China doesn't want local big tech companies to offer ChatGPT products or services
China officials tell big tech that ChatGPT is not allowed.
What you need to know
- A new report claims China is blocking big tech companies from utilizing ChatGPT technology.
- Tencent, Ant Group, and others have been told not to offer any products powered by this AI.
- Any company that wishes to launch AI powered products must report to regulators first.
A new report from Nikkei claims that Chinese regulators have instructed local big tech companies to stop offering products and services that are powered by OpenAI's ChatGPT technology. The request comes as officials grow concerned over the AI's uncensored nature when replying to user queries.
According to the report, Tencent Holdings and Ant Group have been told to not offer any products powered by the new AI technology, directly or via third-party. Any tech company that wishes to offer their own ChatGPT alternative will have to report to regulators first.
ChatGPT is already not officially available in China, though users in the region have been able to access it using VPNs and other redirection methods. Tencent's WeChat app has also seen a handful of third-party copy-cats published by developers, but Tencent has since cracked down on these.
Regulators have become concerned that ChatGPT "could provide a helping hand to the U.S. government in its spread of disinformation and its manipulation of global narratives for its own geopolitical interests." Of course, China has a history of clamping down on western internet services due to its own issues with censorship.
Microsoft just recently launched its own version of ChatGPT that's now integrated with Bing. It's known as Bing Chat, and powered by Microsoft's own "Prometheus" technology. Unsurprisingly, this service is not available in China.
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Zac Bowden is a Senior Editor at Windows Central. Bringing you exclusive coverage into the world of Windows on PCs, tablets, phones, and more. Also an avid collector of rare Microsoft prototype devices! Keep in touch on Twitter: @zacbowden.