During a recent interview with the BBC, Kim Simmonds, the CEO and Founder of Cloud Contracts 365, shared valuable insights on the ever-changing AI landscape and its profound effects on businesses.

Source: bbc.co.uk © copyright 2023 BBC

BBC AI Regulation Interview

Kim stressed the significance of the gathering of tech leaders and policymakers, recognising it as a crucial platform for discussing AI innovation and ensuring responsible usage through regulatory policies.

Despite the lack of clarity around AI regulation, Kim expressed confidence in the ability of Cloud Contracts 365 to adapt to evolving regulations.

Regulation and Agencies

Regarding the idea of a single agency overseeing AI technology and issuing licenses, Kim raised concerns about potential biases and suggested that a multifaceted approach with checks and balances might be more effective.

AI and the world

In the context of the global nature of AI, she stressed the importance of involving China in AI regulation discussions, underlining that responsible regulation is essential in democratic societies to address security and human rights issues.

Interview transcript

Christian Fraser: The titans of big tech are on Capitol Hill today to talk artificial intelligence. It's the first meeting of its kind in which the senators will hear from the likes of Mark Zuckerberg, Elon Musk, you can see there Bill Gates and Sam Altman, among others. They're brainstorming, the lawmakers evermore conscious they're falling behind in their efforts to regulate this fast moving technology. Cameras were allowed in before the meeting. But were not privy to the conversation, a move that was opposed by Senator Elizabeth Warren, "These tech billionaires want to lobby Congress behind closed doors with no questions asked" she said, "that is plain wrong". Let's hear then from Kim Simmonds. She's a lawyer, AI and tech specialist. Kim, good to see you. Is Elizabeth Warren right? Shouldn't we hear open debate about the threats and opportunities from AI?

Kim Simmonds: Well, I think there's a few things here. I mean, the meeting provides, at the moment, an essential platform for tech leaders and policy makers to come together. It's critical that they are engaging to ascertain exactly how to support innovation, whilst protecting the use of AI through policies and regulation. It is a closed meeting for now, but I think the key components need to be talked about with these tech leaders and policy makers in a closed forum for now.

Christian Fraser: The Prime Minister here is calling a World Summit on this in November. Do you see what's happening today as part of that conversation? Do you think governments are going to swap ideas, help each other, or are they moving into their own spheres and one government wants to get ahead of another

Kim Simmonds: Yeah, it's an interesting one, because I do think whatever comes out of this particular meeting is going to, I think start leading the way for a lot of the other countries and certainly for the UK, we do tend to follow suit. So it will be really interesting to see how the conversations materialise and lots of the other countries coming around.

Christian Fraser: Is this not a danger, though, given that these are mostly on the whole American tech giants that their policy and their regulation lends itself to those companies, perhaps it would be stiffer regulation, if it was here in Europe?

Kim Simmonds: Well, in terms of whether it's stiffer or not, I think the importance is that AI tends to be more global than it is in one particular country. And this is something we have to remember, technology transgresses all of these sort of boundaries there. So you know, I think that America do have a lead position with AI businesses, they are going to have a vested interest in that. But you know, ultimately, you know, we are going to be catching up, this is going to be impacting the importance of AI businesses globally. So it is something to bear in mind.

Christian Fraser: Do you watch this from a personal perspective? I mean, could this impact you. Because I know you're a qualified lawyer, you advise the tech industry, I think you've also developed a legal services business using AI technology. If regulation is retrospective, could it damage your interests?

Kim Simmonds: Yeah, so my business Law 365 is a law firm, and that's developed a self serve AI platform for tech businesses to create their own contracts, review their contracts, issues, manage the contract process. So it's an all in one self serve platform. It's called Cloud Contracts 365. Now, this will impact obviously, that the UK regulations, it will impact AI businesses such as my own, I, you know, believe that, you know, hopefully the AI and machine learning product that we are deploying is ahead of curve with all the regulations, but we don't know yet what's going to come out of all of this.

Christian Fraser: Yeah, one of the ideas that I did see which which caught my interest was that they want to in America set up a committee that would oversee all of the AI technology and give licences on an individual basis. Does that sound like a decent idea to you, a step forward?

Kim Simmonds: I think there is danger sometimes of having one single agency be the sort of the point of contact for this kind of stuff. I mean, you know, if that agency has a particular viewpoint, and it hasn't got the checks and balances, it probably needs having several different agencies being able to deploy this. So it's really it's going to be an interesting next few months I think.

Christian Fraser: We exist on a world wide web. If China isn't part of this conversation, what's the point in having regulation in the West when they're doing their own thing that might be contrary to that regulation?

Kim Simmonds: Yeah, so I mean, having regulation is critical, right, when we're doing anything that requires input from a human being requires a human reliance on things, you know, when you're looking at security issues when you're looking at things like human rights we absolutely need regulation. This isn't something that we should just be tampering with and just hoping for the best and fingers crossed. So, we're the West, we're a democratic society, and we need to adhere to those principles quite carefully.

Christian Fraser: Kim Simmonds, good to talk to you. Thank you very much indeed for that. All 100 senators sitting in on that conversation today with Elon Musk and Mark Zuckerberg and the others.

On this page

Ready to get started?