This week, the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) released “Blueprint for an AI Bill of Rights,” a collection of principles and practices to ensure AI systems align with democratic values and civil rights.
The Blueprint highlights exactly what we need more of online: more data privacy, more AI transparency, more protections from automated discrimination. And Mozilla is proud to have played a part in shaping the Blueprint, by collaborating in discussions alongside the OSTP and a range of civil society organizations.
At the core of the Blueprint are five protections for Americans: safe and effective systems; algorithmic discrimination protection; data privacy; notice and explanation; and human alternatives, consideration, and fallback.
A lot of software makers in the U.S. will agree with these protections in theory — but struggle mightily to put them into action. As we’ve learned over the past several years, the AI systems that permeate our lives are often built in ways that directly conflict with these protections. They’re built to collect personal data, to be intentionally opaque, and to learn from existing, frequently biased data sets.
A lot of software makers in the U.S. will agree with these protections in theory — but struggle mightily to put them into action.
J. Bob Alotta, VP Global Programs, Mozilla
But for some software makers — like Mozilla, a nonprofit — this Blueprint doesn’t present a struggle. It presents validation. Software makers that put human dignity ahead of revenue have been building and advocating for AI protections like this for years, and the White House’s endorsement is a welcome stride forward. We know that trustworthy AI and innovation aren’t mutually exclusive.
But the Blueprint is a starting point, not an end point. The next step? We urge the federal government to expand this Blueprint into something formal and enforceable, and that can be ingrained in the software and product processes of AI builders.