The South Korean government held a ministerial meeting on February 16, presided over by Acting President Hwang Kyo-Ahn. There, Minister of Science, ICT & Future Planning Choi Yang-hee announced that multiple South Korean ministries and government agencies would come up with new legal standards within this year to define the legal statuses, responsibilities and ethical standards of new industries based on artificial intelligence (AI), self-driving cars and so on so that South Korean society as a whole can be prepared for a change to be triggered by the fourth industrial revolution.
As the first measure for the preparations, the government is to revise the Framework Act on National Informatization to the Framework Act on Intelligence Information Society before the end of this year. The purpose of the revision is to define the concepts of intelligent information technology and society, guide the adoption of intelligent information technology on a national level and make systematic preparations to that end. The new framework act is to cover the way of determination of those to be held accountable in the case of AI-related accidents and incidents and ethical standards to be applied to the development of AI technology. Similar standards and guidelines were proposed by the United States earlier this year. Major European countries are working on the same now, too.
The South Korean government is also going to prepare tools for the evaluation of the stability of intelligent information technology so that concerns over the safety and security of AI and self-driving cars can be addressed. In addition, ethical guidelines related to the development and utilization of AI systems and self-driving cars are to be prepared. In this context, the Ministry of Science, ICT & Future Planning conducts studies this year on references and procedures regarding data collection and algorithm development.
The government conducts research on how to acknowledge and utilize the value of big data in relation to property rights as well so that movies, pictures and the like created by AI can be legally protected. According to the current Copyright Act, copyright owners are limited to human beings. An expansion of the scope is to be discussed during the course of this year.