Maybe There’s More Than Meets The Eye In AI’s “Oppenheimer Moment”?

John Battelle
5 min readMay 31, 2023
Scary shit!

(original post)

Well that was something. Yesterday the Center for AI Safety, which didn’t exist last year, released a powerful 22-word statement that sent the world’s journalists into a predictable paroxysm of hand-wringing:

“Mitigating the risk of extinction from A.I. should be a global priority alongside other societal-scale risks, such as pandemics and nuclear war.”

Oh my. I mean, NUCLEAR WAR folks. I mean, the END OF THE WORLD! And thank God, I mean, really, thank the ever-loving LORD that tech’s new crop of genius Great Men — leaders from Microsoft, Google, OpenAI and the like — have all come together to proclaim that indeed, this is a VERY BIG PROBLEM and not to worry, they all very much WANT TO BE REGULATED, as soon as humanly possible, please.

The image at top is how CNN responded in its widely read “Reliable Sources” media industry newsletter, which is as good a barometer of media groupthink as the front page of The New York Times, which also prominently featured the story (along with a requisite “the cool kids are now doing AI in a rented mansion” fluff piece. Same ice cream, different flavor).

--

--

John Battelle

A Founder of The Recount, NewCo, Federated Media, sovrn Holdings, Web 2 Summit, Wired, Industry Standard; writer on Media, Technology, Culture, Business