The tech industry needs to compromise with regulators and take the concerns of governments and citizens seriously, Microsoft President Brad Smith said in an interview on Wednesday.
“The technology is going to have to lean … with real, concrete ideas … even make concessions, so that we can all compromise and build a common platform that better protects people than … the Internet in its own right. together recently made it past, ”Smith told Reuters.
On the sidelines of the Lisbon Web Summit, Smith said he’s not sure the tech industry will push to address these issues as much as is likely to be needed over the next decade.
Tech companies need to do more than pretend to comply with regulations while opposing all government action, Smith warned.
“The government (is) going to see through this, and that doesn’t bode well for the industry… We kind of have to get real.”
Smith did not mention Apple’s recent campaign against a provision in EU digital markets law that would require the iPhone maker to allow customers to install software outside of its App Store, a practice called sideloading. .
In the wake of Facebook’s rebranding to Meta last week and a day after Microsoft touted its metaverse-related plans in a blog post, Smith tempered the “hype” around the metaverse, a concept spanning worlds. digital and physical.
“We all talk about the metaverse like we’re stepping into a new dimension. It’s not like dying and going to heaven. We’re all going to be living in the real world with people,” Smith observed, before calling for it. collaboration and interoperability in the development of the metaverse.
Facebook, used by nearly 3 billion people, changed its name to Meta amid fierce criticism of its business practices to focus on building the “metaverse,” a shared virtual environment that will succeed the mobile internet.
“I think (the Metaverse) will be really big… and pretty big,” Smith said. “We have to make sure it protects privacy, digital security and protects against misinformation, manipulation. We have a lot to clean up.”
Reflecting on the explosion of interest in a tech vision that has been around for years, Smith noted that it was important not to let the “hype” obscure long-term tech trends.
Although early users of the virtual worlds known as the Metaverse criticized Facebook’s rebranding as an attempt to capitalize on a concept it didn’t create to deflect criticism, Smith said the Big actors Techs like Facebook, Microsoft, Google, and Apple would likely each develop their own versions.
“Everyone will go in there.”
© Thomson Reuters 2021