Senator Marsha Blackburn, R-Tenn., is urging Congress to pass a privacy standard for internet users as the first step in ensuring Americans are informed and their data safe as artificial intelligence (AI) technology advances at a rapid pace .
Blackburn is one of four Republicans on the Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on Intellectual Property (IP). The panel is holding a hearing entitled “Artificial Intelligence and Intellectual Property – Part I: Patents, Innovation and Competition” on Wednesday afternoon.
“We’re going to look at it from an IP perspective, because when you look at what China is doing and how it’s pushing people from all over the world to come to China and file their patents with AI, there are different applications and uses. And they.” “We submitted around 1.6 million applications. That’s more than double the number that was filed in the US … on AI applications,” she said. “We should not ignore this issue without further addressing the threat it will pose to our US innovators.”
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The senator was referring to statistics from the world Intellectual property The organization (WIPO) shows that China has filed more patents than the US and Europe in 2021, namely more than 1.5 million. China has also filed nearly 75% of the world total of AI patents over the past decade.
However, the ruling Chinese Communist Party has been accused for years of stealing intellectual property from Americans – an attempt that Blackburn says will only accelerate with AI.
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“I know it’s a source of irritation for a lot of our innovators — whether they’re in the consumables market, or after-market auto parts, or you know, component parts for electric vehicles or music,” Blackburn said. “The thing is, a lot of people don’t know it’s pirated until someone sends something in for repairs and they realize they didn’t do it… It’s something that’s a patent or copyright infringement .”
When asked what steps Congress could take to protect Americans’ intellectual property, especially as China’s AI capabilities become more advanced, Blackburn suggested that lawmakers should start making sure user data is safe online .
“I think the first thing we need to do is adopt a standard to protect the privacy of online consumers. This law needs to be passed,” she said. “You must give individuals the right to protect their information online and keep it out of this open source, and be able to firewall their information and its use in virtual space.”
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“Secondly, there will need to be a discussion and we will do more about how you deal with the patent copyright issue. Because our law does not cover those created by technology. They cover those signed up by people. So we need to figure out that component,” Blackburn added.
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The hearing on AI and intellectual property is scheduled for 3 p.m. this afternoon. The senators are scheduled to hear technology policy experts, as well as executives from Google and Novartis.