Should artificial intelligence be more strictly regulated?

From phones to cars to weapons, the use of artificial intelligence technology is quickly growing and expanding to new territories, leaving many to wonder whether the United States shouldn’t follow the European Union in starting to impose stricter regulations on artificial intelligence development and use.

Should artificial intelligence be more strictly regulated?

From face and voice recognition on smartphones to self-driving cars, artificial intelligence (AI)  technology can achieve decision-making tasks, mimic human language, or be partially or fully autonomous. The field continues to innovate and broaden its applications, and AI is becoming increasingly present in our everyday life. Yet some are left wondering if it shouldn’t be more strictly regulated. Although regulation could curb innovation and economic growth, prominent tech figures such as Elon Musk and Bill Gates have said that the risks associated with unregulated AI are too great to leave the field uncontrolled.

Proponents argue that it is necessary to implement more rigorous regulation to protect the population from the misuse and threats of AI, i.e. prioritizing the rights and trust of the individual over unchecked innovation. Opponents say that stricter regulations would constrain innovation and would create additional costs, and consequently hinder economic growth.

Issue Timeline


First Physical Robot Appears at World’s Fair

This robot could interpret human commands to perform tasks such as walking or blowing up balloons.


Isaac Asimov Creates The Three Laws of Robotics

The rules – widely accepted by other writers – dictate the ways in which robots can act in relation to humans. They cannot harm humans or let them be harmed; they must obey humans unless it conflicts with the first law; and they must protect their own existence unless it conflicts with the previous two laws.


NASA Sends First Robot to Mars

The Sojourner rover was NASA’s first autonomous robotic system sent to Mars to conduct scientific testing.


Apple Releases the Siri App

The AI technology for smartphones that uses voice queries, gesture-based control, and focus-tracking to perform tasks was acquired by Apple shortly thereafter and became an integral part of the company’s products.


Elon Musk Calls for More AI Regulation

Despite increasing regulation from the government, Tesla and SpaceX CEO expresses warnings regarding the threats posed by unregulated AI.


European Commission Proposes First AI Regulation

The European Union’s executive branch presented a proposal – The AI Act – focused on the specific use of artificial intelligence and the associated risks. The EU hopes the framework will set a worldwide example.

Micro Issues


Data Privacy and Cyber Threats

The two sides differ on whether AI technology poses a significant threat to individuals’ privacy and rights that would require additional regulations.



Opponents say more regulation on AI design, development, and application would curb the ability for innovation, yet supporters believe this is a necessary tradeoff.



Supporters of stricter regulation argue that the additional cost of regulation would be justified by reduced risks while opponents state that additional AI regulation would be economically damaging and unnecessary.

Pro Arguments


Unregulated AI could work against humanity.

The possibilities of artificial intelligence developments are endless, and leaving this technology unregulated could lead to the creation of a sentient being more intelligent than humans – which might potentially threaten humanity.


Private data could be stolen.

AI technology opens the door to collecting a large amount of data that could be stolen and create dangerous situations for the users.


Over-reliance on artificial intelligence can lead to discrimination.

AI systems such as facial recognition software can contain biases that could lead to different forms of discrimination.


Human intervention can be preferable for certain applications.

Solely using artificial intelligence in medical or military settings creates moral and ethical issues.


Regulation instills a sense of trust in AI development and technology.

Laws can help ensure human rights are protected and safeguards are put in place which would reinforce the trust of AI users.

Con Arguments


Regulation curbs innovation.

Stricter rules make it more difficult to continue to innovate and develop new and improved technologies.


Artificial intelligence is too broad to regulate.

The spectrum of what constitutes AI ranges so wide that it would be impossible to regulate it all under one common denominator.


Regulating artificial intelligence impacts the economy.

The broad range of applications for AI are a driving factor behind economic growth, which could be slowed down by regulations.


Regulations create more bureaucracy.

With regulations and compliance comes administrative responsibilities that cost time and money.


Regulations cost money to AI providers.

Designers and developers of artificial intelligence technology would have to spend more money in order to comply with regulations.