ChatGPT has been banned in Italy.
Italy is the first Western country to ban ChatGPT, the LLM AI chatbot. Could this be the thin end of the wedge for artificial intelligence?
Microsoft is a big investor in the ChatGPT AI Chatbot and plans to embed AI chat into its Office apps, including Word, Excel, PowerPoint and Outlook. If ChatGPT is banned in Italy, the new versions of the flagship MS Office products will either be unreleased in Italy or a seriously nerfed version will exist for Italian users.
This is The Italian data-protection authority getting upset and threatening AI companies with GDPR - General Data Protection Regulation will drive innovation away from Italy. The GDPR is Europen Union red tape that brings users silly cookie pop-ups and is used to make the internet more difficult to use.
Italy has struggled in the past with being on the wrong side, and it looks like they have just put themselves on the wrong side again. Blocking apps on the internet is not the job of a government, and politicians getting involved with the net only brings a poorer internet experience for the population.
Banning anything on the web will always create a void often filled by a proxy; remember the pirate bay? They tried to block that, but the proxies appeared like mushrooms at night.
A UK Information Commissioner's Office representative said that while the government will "support" developments in AI, it was also ready to "challenge non-compliance" with data protection laws.
Let's hope the crazies don't go too far to threaten the development of LLM-based AI ChatBots, as that would be a real loss to the future of the internet.