The 2024 Republican Party Platform Would Roll Back Tech Regulations on Artificial Intelligence and Cryptocurrencies

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Below: Meta will remove more posts about “Zionists.” First:

The Republican Party’s 2024 platform aims to promote cryptocurrencies, artificial intelligence, and Elon Musk.

For a party whose leaders, including the former president Donald Trumpoften opposed to Big Tech, the new Republican platform has relatively little to say about regulating technology. And what it does say suggests a laissez-faire, if not downright cozy, approach to emerging sectors that have caught the attention of the Biden administration.

The 16-page platform, proposed by Trump and adopted by GOP delegates on Monday ahead of next week’s Republican National Convention, calls for empowering, not restricting, cryptocurrency and artificial intelligence. “Republicans will pave the way for future economic greatness by leading the world in emerging industries,” it promises.

Critics say the platform’s policies could harm consumers while propping up the worst performers in emerging industries at the expense of true innovation.

According to the document, the Republican Party’s top technology priority appears to be promoting cryptocurrencies.

“Republicans will end the Democrats’ unlawful and un-American crackdown on cryptocurrencies and oppose the creation of a central bank digital currency,” the platform said. “We will defend the right to mine bitcoin and ensure that every American has the right to independently hold and transact their digital assets without government oversight or control.”

Trump’s Posing as Pro-Crypto Candidate Could Be Smart Move, Says Chris MacKenziesenior communications director for the Chamber of Progress, a left-leaning trade group that receives funding from tech companies. In an open letter Tuesday, his group called President Biden to support bipartisan cryptocurrency legislation widely seen as industry-friendly, noting that 18 million Americans own or trade cryptocurrencies.

“We see this as an opportunity for him to… take back Trump as the crypto candidate who worked really hard to make this part of his campaign,” MacKenzie said.

Some consumer advocates say this would be wrong.

Supporting cryptocurrency is a strange idea for a major party, given the relatively small role it plays in the broader economy, he said. Robert Weissmanpresident of the consumer group Public Citizen. He said its prominent place on the Republican agenda likely reflects intense lobbying by cryptocurrency interests, which he said “obviously influences politicians of both parties.”

“The current enforcement standards that Republicans are proposing to repeal or roll back are designed to protect Americans from the scams, frauds, and frauds that are rampant in the cryptocurrency industry,” Weissman said. “In practice, that should be understood as, ‘Our goal is to promote more fraud to everyday Americans.’”

The Republican Party is also calling for the repeal of Biden’s executive order on artificial intelligence.

“We will repeal Joe Biden’s dangerous executive order that stifles AI innovation and imposes radical leftist ideas on AI development,” the platform reads. “Instead, Republicans support AI development rooted in free speech and human flourishing.”

The sweeping executive order, which Biden signed in October 2023, imposed new security obligations on AI developers and called on federal agencies to mitigate the technology’s risks while spurring its responsible development. My Colleagues Elizabeth Dwoskin, Drew Harwell AND Cat Zakrzewski In May, it was reported that an influential technology lobbying group was preparing the ground for the Trump administration to possibly scrap those regulations and instead allocate the funds to artificial intelligence grants and contracts.

However, it is unclear how many AI companies actually want the regulation to be repealed.

“For American companies to continue to thrive and lead innovation at home and around the world, American policymakers must help set global norms for AI,” he said. Julia Massiminoexecutive vice president of government affairs at the Information Technology Industry Council, a global technology trade association, in an emailed statement. She said the group is calling on policymakers to prioritize policies that “build trust in technology” while supporting its beneficial uses.

Suresh VenkatasubramanianBrown University computer science professor who helped the Biden administration develop thinking on AI told Tech Brief that a hands-off approach to AI development “may have made sense” during the technology’s formative years. But he said “we’re well beyond that point today.”

“We have a wealth of evidence about why and how we need to govern AI systems that impact people’s rights, opportunities and access to essential services,” Venkatasubramanian said.

The Republican Party’s agenda includes another technology-related priority: supporting commercial space exploration.

“Under Republican leadership, the United States will build a robust manufacturing industry in orbit around Earth, send American astronauts back to the Moon and beyond to Mars, and strengthen our partnerships with the rapidly expanding space sector to revolutionize our ability to access, live in, and develop the resources of space,” the document reads.

The main beneficiary of government investment in commercial space exploration is likely to be Elon Muskbillionaire who controls SpaceX, Tesla and X. Musk has increasingly voiced his conservative views in recent years, and in 2022 he urged his massive X supporters to vote Republican in the midterm elections. He has not endorsed any presidential candidate, though he said after an impromptu meeting with Trump in March that he was “stepping away from Biden.”

The platform did not mention Section 230, the tech industry liability protections that Trump sought to repeal as president, or the antitrust enforcement against tech giants that intensified under the Trump administration before the Biden administration took an even tougher line.

Meta to Remove More ‘Zionist’ Posts as Part of Anti-Semitism Fight

Meta is more aggressively removing some social media posts that include the word “Zionist” when it appears to be synonymous with the word Jew — an effort to counter a surge in online anti-Semitism following the start of Israel’s war on Gaza, our colleague said Naomi Nix reports for Tech Brief.

Meta announced Tuesday that it is expanding its hate speech policy to remove more content that attacks “Zionists,” which does not criticize the political movement but is likely to spread anti-Semitic stereotypes or call for harm to Jews or Israelis “under the guise of attacking Zionists,” the company said in a blog post.

The social media giant currently bans any attacks on people based on race, religion, nationality, or sexual orientation, including posts that spread “harmful stereotypes” or dehumanize people. Under the policy, Meta treats the word Zionist as equivalent to Jew or Israeli in limited circumstances, such as comparing them to rats — a known anti-Semitic trope.

Meta will now be removing more content containing the word “Zionist,” such as posts claiming Zionists rule the world or control the media, and posts comparing Zionists to pigs, filth, and vermin.

Meta has been discussing the potential policy change with civil society groups for months. And while the change has already won the company support from some Jewish groups, it is likely to face criticism from some digital rights activists and pro-Palestinian groups who say the new approach will stifle legitimate criticism of the Israeli government and Zionism in the midst of a catastrophic war.

US, Allies Dismantle Russian AI-Powered ‘Bot Farm’ (Joseph Menn)

First, federal regulators have banned messaging apps from sharing content with minors (Cristiano Lima)

The United States plans to allocate up to $1.6 billion to fund chip packaging (New York Times)

Microsoft raises price of Xbox Game Pass Ultimate, introduces new ‘Standard’ tier (The Verge)

Google No Longer Claims Carbon Neutral (Bloomberg)

Amazon says it hit climate goal seven years early (New York Times)

Microsoft, Apple abandon OpenAI amid antitrust scrutiny (Financial Times)

Google Maps Speedometer Finally Available on iOS and CarPlay (Engadget)

Kamala D. Harris’ Awkward Quotes Become Internet Memes (Taylor Lorenz)

Your partner wants your online passwords. Say no. (Tatum Hunter)

Tesla Mystery: Elon Musk’s Car Gets VIP Treatment for Autonomous AI (Business Insider)

Victor Pengpresident of Santa Clara, Calif.-based semiconductor company Advanced Micro Devices, has been elected to the Steering Committee of the National Semiconductor Technology Center Consortium, where he will represent the private sector as a volunteer.

  • The Federalist Society is hosting a chat with the FTC’s Melissa Holyoak at noon Wednesday.
  • Senate Commerce Committee to hold hearing on “The Need to Protect Americans’ Privacy and the AI ​​Accelerator” on Thursday at 10 a.m.
  • The Congressional Internet Academy Caucus is hosting an event titled “Technology Platforms and the First Amendment: The Impact of Supreme Court Decisions” at noon Friday.

That’s all for today – thanks a lot for joining us! Remember to tell others to subscribe to Tech Brief. Contact Cristiano (via email or social media) and Will (via email or social media) for tips, opinions or greetings!