If the age of large tech companies regulating themselves (opens in new tab) ever existed, it’s now over. At least, that’s what Microsoft’s president believes, as he made the remarks during the recent promotion of his new book ‘Tools and Weapons’.
According to the PA news agency, which attended the promotion, Brad Smith said that tech organisations can no longer regulate themselves (opens in new tab), but also stressed out that the government needs to be careful not to exempt too much pressure and, in the process, curb innovation and progress.
“I do believe that the age of self-regulation (opens in new tab) is over. I might argue that it never really started because that would suggest that everybody really seized the opportunity and I don’t think that happened,” he told PA. “But I think even more broadly than that, no technology in the history of technology has gone as unregulated for as long as digital technology as gone unregulated.
He stressed the importance of proper regulation, over any regulation.
“Now, at the same time to say there needs to be regulation doesn’t mean that any form of regulation will be good. There needs to be thought, there needs to be a balance.”
“We want innovation to continue. I think more than anything we need these conversations to begin by asking what problems we want to solve, and then using that knowledge to focus regulation in the right areas.”
With issues such as facial recognition, data management and privacy, there has never been more pressure on the tech industry.