Today’s Cache | Game over for Google in Epic’s antitrust lawsuit; EU focuses on details in first AI Act; Grok accused of plagiarism

Updated - December 12, 2023 05:49 pm IST

Published - December 12, 2023 01:49 pm IST

Today’s Cache | Game over for Google in Epic’s antitrust lawsuit

Today’s Cache | Game over for Google in Epic’s antitrust lawsuit | Photo Credit: REUTERS

(This article is part of Today’s Cache, The Hindu’s newsletter on emerging themes at the intersection of technology, innovation and policy. To get it in your inbox, subscribe here.)

Game over for Google in Epic’s antitrust lawsuit

Epic Games’ three-year-old lawsuit against Google and its app store commissions arrived at its conclusion as a federal court jury came to the decision that the internet giant’s app marketplace, Play Store, had stifled competition and hurt both smartphone users and software developers. Google plans to appeal the decision, claiming that it offers more options than its competitors, but Epic Games’ CEO Tim Sweeney was all smiles as the verdict came to be known. He pitched it as a victory for game lovers and creators trying to thrive in a challenging sector.

Google CEO Sundar Pichai was one of the witnesses in the trial, as Google defended its approach to charging commissions and said that it could only prosper if developers did too. However, with the verdict in hand, regulators will likely try to take aim at Google’s dominance in other areas, such as search and online advertising.

EU focuses on details in first AI Act

Though EU countries have come to a tentative agreement to regulate artificial intelligence (AI), legislators are working on the finer details that apply to AI in real life use cases, according to sources. These include how AI can be used for biometric surveillance and how large language models treat copyrighted media.

Negotiations took place over three days to produce the first agreement. However, after further discussions, the act will be formally edited and published in the official journal so that EU member countries can analyse it. The AI Act may come into force in 2026.

Grok accused of plagiarism

Elon Musk-backed AI startup xAI’s chatbot Grok has been accused of being trained on OpenAI’s code, after Grok generated results which referenced “OpenAI’s use case policy” when explaining why it couldn’t answer a question. Musk and xAI researcher Igor Babushkin denied these allegations.

While Musk claimed that OpenAI’s chatbot ChatGPT had been trained on Twitter data, Babushkin said that no OpenAI code had been used to train Grok. xAI’s chatbot is currently accessible to X’s paying users, as Musk tries to integrate Grok with the social media platform. However, experts have pointed to the emergence of AI-generated content on the internet, which may again be harvested by AI models to produce more machine-generated data and even hallucinated responses.

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