As the General Counsel of G2, my role is to contribute to the growth and protection of the company. This includes being mindful of the opportunities and risks presented by generative AI, a topic of concern for lawyers across various industries. While AI offers significant potential for organizations, it also poses certain risks that should be acknowledged by all business leaders, not just legal departments.
Given the abundance of information available, I understand that navigating the complexities surrounding AI can be challenging. To address these concerns and provide guidance to business leaders, I recently participated in a round-table discussion with leading experts in the AI field in San Francisco. During our discussion, we explored the evolving landscape of generative AI, the relevant laws, and the implications for business operations.
We collectively agreed that generative AI tools are transforming the way we live and work. However, we also recognized the importance of considering several legal factors when integrating AI into our companies. Based on our discussion, I have compiled a list of seven key considerations for business leaders embarking on their generative AI journeys.
1. Understand the distinction between AI companies and companies that utilize AI. It is crucial to identify whether you are working with a company that specializes in developing and selling AI technologies or a company that incorporates AI into its operations or products. This distinction determines the legal terrain you need to navigate and the applicable laws.
4. Strike the right balance between copyright and intellectual property (IP) in relation to AI-generated outputs. The ability of AI to create unique outputs raises questions about copyright ownership. Jurisdictions have varying views on this matter, emphasizing the importance of developing a proactive IP strategy when dealing with AI. It is crucial to consider whether enforcing IP ownership of AI-generated outputs aligns with your business goals.
5. Ensure data privacy compliance by understanding where data is stored, how it is used, and the data protection laws in effect. Establish early on whether your data is anonymized and used to improve AI models or if it is protected adequately. Privacy laws require companies to provide notices, obtain consent, and allow individuals to access, delete, or correct personal data. However, AI’s technical nature makes it challenging to fully comply with these laws, which are subject to change.
6. Comply with local regulations, particularly if your company operates in the European Union. The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) imposes strict regulations on AI, focusing on transparency, data minimization, and user consent. Non-compliance can result in significant fines. Additionally, be aware of the proposed Artificial Intelligence Act (AIA) in the EU, which aims to regulate AI systems based on their risk levels.
By considering these seven factors, business leaders can make informed decisions when integrating AI into their companies and mitigate potential legal risks. It is essential to stay updated on the evolving AI landscape and consult with legal professionals to ensure compliance with applicable laws and regulations.