In a recent survey conducted by Centre for Governance of AI, a part of Oxford University, which surveyed 2000 Americans on their views on Artificial Intelligence, has revealed a growing suspicions about the use of AI by tech companies. The survey reported that Americans believe US Military followed by university researchers more trustworthy for using AI than tech companies.
More than two thirds of the participants said that they don’t have a semblance of confidence in Facebook developing AI. The skepticism showed by public about the deployment of AI technology by companies was more for Facebook than other tech companies. This doesn’t come as a surprise as the Facebook lost public confidence and attracted public outcry following the massive scandal after the infamous disclosure that Russia used the social network to influence 2016 presidential elections. Facebook’s data leaks to political consulting firm Cambridge Analytica has also shook user’s confidence on Facebook’s ability to protect privacy and data.
The survey’s star performers among tech companies includes Microsoft, the company is highly trusted by most American’s with 44% of participants expressing a great deal of confidence on its ability to safely explore AI’s potential without posing a serious security and privacy risk. US military was the most trusted as 17% and 32% of participants giving it the highest and second highest confidence score.
57% of young college graduates preferred development of AI while the people with high school or lesser education showed a disinclination towards AI wit 71% of participants expressing distrust. A recent report by Sutton test research has said that AI will be the major contributor to social and inequality in coming decades. In UK only, 350,000 paralegals may lose jobs if AI applications could provide alternative solutions, the report suggested.
Although the survey’s results were more or less divided about most questionnaires, but a majority of respondents strongly agreeing to the dictum that Artificial intelligence and robotic technologies need careful management. The survey participants ranked data privacy as their topmost concern followed by cyberattacks and autonomous weaponry.
Although no specific company was given utmost preference for trust in cutting edge research in AI, but Microsoft came near to the most trusted tag. The trust in US military came as a surprise in the industry as Silicon Valley companies have been at the receiving end of public outrage in the past for its alleged cooperation with US military. Thousands of Google employees in April 2018, raised protesting voices against the company joining hands with pentagon to use its computer vision technology for identifying objects in drone video footage. This forced Google to announce that it will not renew its contract for collaboration with the intelligence agency.