Ottawa launches voluntary code of conduct for generative AI systems

The set of 18 measures is a 'critical bridge' until the government approves formal legislation through Bill C-27

Canadian tech companies Cohere and OpenText are among the first organizations to sign onto Canada’s new voluntary code of conduct for generative AI.

The guidelines focus on responsible AI use and will be utilized until Ottawa approves formal legislation from the Artificial Intelligence and Data Act (AIDA) through Bill C-27. The government introduced the bill in June 2022, but it could be years before it becomes law.

The voluntary code focuses on 18 measures within six principles: accountability, safety, fairness and equity transparency, human oversight and monitoring, and validity and robustness.

Innovation, Science and Economic Development (ISED) Canada says the code is partially based on a consultation process the government launched in August.

The U.S. launched similar measures over the summer. Google, Meta, and Microsoft were among the companies to sign on.

“We are very pleased to see the Canadian government taking a strong leadership role in building a regulatory framework that will help society maximize the benefits of AI, while addressing the many legitimate concerns that exist,” Aidan Gomez, Cohere’s CEO, said in a press release.

“It is essential that we, as an industry, address key issues like bias and ensure that humans maintain a clear role in oversight and monitoring of this incredibly exciting technology.”

However, not all Canadian companies appear to support the move. Tobi Lutke, the CEO of Shopify, said “he won’t support the measures.”

Image credit: Shutterstock

Source: ISED