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Don Tapscott: We Need a New Social Contract for the Digital Age

The Toronto Star | Don Tapscott | May 20, 2023

Robot on keyboard - Don Tapscott:  We Need a New Social Contract for the Digital Age

The possibilities of artificial intelligence on our economies and culture are spectacular, and its dark side is equally breathtaking.  We need a new social contract.

  • The Power and Peril of Generative AI:
    • Don Tapscott's experience with ChatGPT, a generative AI, reveals the impressive capabilities of the technology - creating high-quality content in a matter of seconds, translating text into multiple languages, and adopting various stylistic approaches.
    • However, he underscores the dangers, such as AI's potential misuse for spreading false information or its impact on jobs and labor markets.
    • As AI generates content, it raises serious questions about copyright ownership and the authenticity of created works.
      • Who owns the AI-generated content - the AI model creator, the AI user, or the AI itself?
      • How can teachers or music labels differentiate between original works and AI-generated pieces?

See:  NFX: Hot List of 75 Emerging AI Startups (Seed, Series A)

  • New Social Contract:
    • The rise of generative AI, along with other technological advancements like IoT and Web3, marks the beginning of the Second Era of the Digital Age, which requires new institutions, laws, education, and behaviors to responsibly harness these technologies.
    • Tapscott emphasizes the need for a new social contract that takes our new-found capabilities into account and echoes the sentiment by saying:

"It’s my belief that our newer technologies have pushed us to a tipping point and that we need to begin developing the blueprint for a new social contract that takes our new-found capabilities into account."

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