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Thursday, February 16, 2017

Whatever happened to the DeepMind AI ethics board Google promised?

Alex Hurn
The Guardian
Originally posted January 26, 2017

Three years ago, artificial intelligence research firm DeepMind was acquired by Google for a reported £400m. As part of the acquisition, Google agreed to set up an ethics and safety board to ensure that its AI technology is not abused.

The existence of the ethics board wasn’t confirmed at the time of the acquisition announcement, and the public only became aware of it through a leak to industry news site The Information. But in the years since, senior members of DeepMind have publicly confirmed the board’s existence, arguing that it is one of the ways that the company is trying to “lead the way” on ethical issues in AI.

But in all that time DeepMind has consistently refused to say who is on the board, what it discusses, or publicly confirm whether or not it has even officially met. The Guardian has asked DeepMind and Google multiple times since the acquisition on 26 January 2014 for transparency around the board, and received just one answer on the record.

The article is here.