The Hands-Off Tech Era Is Over

It is clearer than ever that governments will not leave technology alone.

Europe has promised standard phone chargers for portable electronics, while Texas has passed a controversial law on online speech control by social media companies. There may be more changes like technology companies as government officials look at how they do business and how we use products.

This probably means that new technologies, such as driverless cars and face recognition systems, will take more time to spread around the world. For many in favor of technology, more reflection and oversight will slow down the invention. For others, that’s the decent thing to do, and it should end there.

I wanted to summarize it in today’s bulletin because it’s easy to overwhelm (or erase) all attempts at government regulation. In recent weeks, journalists have written about congressional bills on data privacy and anti-technology trust; Job rankings of companies like Uber; several countries set rules for how data can move around the world and how it can move; The Netherlands is forcing Apple to review payment options for dating applications; and two state laws on social media speech.

All of this is the result of a still-evolving rethink that has been a relatively laissez-faire approach to technology since the 1990s. With few exceptions, the prevailing attitude was that new Internet technologies, including digital advertising, e-commerce, social media, and “concerted” employment through apps, were too new, too marginal, and too useful for governments to limit by many rules.

When television and radio made these new media new, many technology companies pushed for smooth regulation, saying they were bringing changes for the better, the elected officials were too stubborn and clueless to intervene effectively and the government would lose progress.

Just one example: A decade ago, Facebook said that U.S. rules that require television and radio to pay attention to election-related ads should not apply to that company. The U.S. election agency “should not interfere with innovation.” said a Facebook lawyer at the time.

These ads are not always effective, but after Russian-backed propagandists spread social media ads and free messages to spark political divisions in the U.S. in 2016, Facebook voluntarily began providing more transparency about political ads.

Better laws or advertisements would probably not prevent foreign actors from abusing Facebook in wars in the U.S. or other countries. But he believed that the usual wisdom without empty hands should probably be left alone to do what the tech maker wanted.

“We realized that we had unleashed these powerful forces and had not created the right protections,” said Jeff Chester, executive director of the Center for Digital Democracy, for the defense of nonprofit consumers. “We can say at the outset that all technologies need to be regulated in a common sense.”

Now the regulators feel strengthened. Lawmakers have stepped in to make rules for the use of technology to know the face of law enforcement. There will be more laws like Texas to remove the power of a few technology directors who set the rules for free speech to billions of people. More countries will be forced to rebuild the economy of Apple and Google applications. More regulations are already changing the way children use technology.

Again, all this is not going to be a good government intervention. But there are also more signs that people who create technology want more government oversight, or at least pay word of mouth. Any emerging technology discussions, including Dall-E artificial intelligence illustration software and cryptocurrency, discuss potential harm and how it can minimize regulation.

This is not to say that people do not agree with the government’s oversight. But the answer is almost never government intervention. And that’s different.

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  • Over the course of 10 months, nearly 400 car accidents in the U.S. were advanced driver assistance technologies, According to federal data reported by my colleagues Neal Boudette and Cade Metz. As I wrote above, federal regulators are trying to better understand the real-world security of technologies like Tesla’s Autopilot as they become more common.

  • What was lost in the discussion about AI and the human mind: Fearing that he was aware of a piece of artificial intelligence software by a Google employee was a distraction from his serious concerns about AI, including all the humans needed for technology and supposedly automated systems, Bloomberg News wrote. (Subscription may be required.)

  • Sports streaming: Apple has paid $ 2.5 billion for the right to broadcast Major League Soccer games on a television app for Apple devices, Athletic reported. In India, the two companies will pay $ 3 billion to play cricket matches. These agreements are another sign that companies are committed to the sport to pay for video streaming services.

I will watch all the videos of a cat playing poker, like this one.

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