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Roger Clarke's 'Evaluation of EC's AI Regulation'

Would the European Commission's Proposed Artificial Intelligence Act
Deliver the Necessary Protections?

Annex 3: All Other AI Systems, and The 50 Principles

It is an Annex to the article of the above name

Version of 31 August 2021

Roger Clarke **

© Xamax Consultancy Pty Ltd, 2021

Available under an AEShareNet Free
for Education licence or a Creative Commons 'Some
Rights Reserved' licence.

This document is at http://www.rogerclarke.com/DV/EC21-Ann3.html


This Annex provides extracts from (EC 2021), interpretive comment, and [ cross-references to the corresponding elements of The 50 Principles inside square-brackets ]

Note that this even these empty provisions may not apply to those Other AI Systems that enjoy an exemption, including by virtue of any of Arts. 2.1(a), 2.1(b), 2.3 and 2.4

The very last Article in the EC Proposal, and hence probably an afterthought, is a requirement of the EC and EU member states to "encourage and facilitate the drawing up of codes of conduct intended to foster the voluntary application to AI systems other than high-risk AI systems of the requirements set out in Title III, Chapter 2" (Art. 69.1).

Very limited public benefit is likely to accrue from the anaemic set of requirements even in respect of that sub-set of 'high-risk AI systems' as are subject to the provisions, or to some of them. It appears unlikely that any value at all would arise from the publication of 'codes' by corporations and industry associations that are voluntary and unenforceable.

It is particularly noteworthy that the EC did not even see fit to draw attention to its own 'Ethics Guidelines for Trustworthy AI' (EC 2019). These were ostensibly developed and published with the declared purpose of being "to promote Trustworthy AI" (p.2) and "articulate a framework for achieving Trustworthy AI based on fundamental rights" (p.6); yet in a mere 2 years they appear to have been relegated to history. The reasonable supposition is that corporate lobbying successfully achieved the massive dilution apparent in the EC Proposal, and this was carried over even as a basis for voluntary, unenforceable and inherently ineffective self-regulation.

This Article is very difficult to interpret as anything other than the cheapest possible form of window-dressing.


Author Affiliations

Roger Clarke is Principal of Xamax Consultancy Pty Ltd, Canberra. He is also a Visiting Professor in Cyberspace Law & Policy at the University of N.S.W., and a Visiting Professor in the Research School of Computer Science at the Australian National University.



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Created: 14 July 2021 - Last Amended: 31 August 2021 by Roger Clarke - Site Last Verified: 15 February 2009
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