Sam Altman and Hillary Clinton share visions for teens using AI, child well-being

Stephanie Sierra Image
Tuesday, January 30, 2024
SF national summit looks to solve how politicians can best serve kids
At a San Francisco summit, Open AI CEO Sam Altman and Hillary Clinton discussed key challenges facing kids after a national survey found the majority of teens believe politicians are failing them.

SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- A national survey found the majority of teens and children believe politicians are making decisions that are not reflective of their needs, according to a poll published Monday by Common Sense Media.

The group hosted its inaugural summit at San Francisco's Pier 27 bringing together advocates, researchers, youth leaders, policymakers, and business leaders - including OpenAI CEO Sam Altman and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton -- to discuss key challenges facing kids and young families.

Altman discussed his vision for the future of AI.

"AI tools are going to be part of the world, but it won't be that we're lazy," said Altman. "It's that we get to operate at a higher rate of abstraction.

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Altman says he envisions every teen and adult having their own personalized AI experience to make life easier and more efficient.

"AI will be a new way to use the internet... AI will be a new way to do work more productively... AI will be a new way to discover science...A new way to get better healthcare," he said.

The CEO added kindergarteners will be operating at a more sophisticated level than ever before by the time they're done with 12th grade. This is an ambitious goal that comes amid concerns over the future of internet safety.

"I would really want my 14-year-old to use these tools," Altman said. "So we got to find a way to make it so that we as a society, we as individual educators are very comfortable with teens using these tools."

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Attendees shared their vision for what an ideal, safe internet would look like including messages urging for parental control, while others supported the need for kids' creativity.

"Statistics around children's wellbeing, poverty, education, health, continue to haunt our nation," said former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

According to a Common Sense Media poll that surveyed 12 to 17-year-olds, 60 percent of the teens actually believe politicians aren't making decisions that are reflective of their needs. The survey also found a majority of respondents believed being a parent is financially more challenging than it ever has been before.

"Politicians are failing America's young people - the majority of teens and children," said Natalia Garcia, with Common Sense Media.

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The results are the latest measure of the deep learning setbacks incurred during the pandemic.

The survey found a majority of people stressed the demand for access to mental health resources through our education system and the need for child tax credit, which is a tax break for qualifying children.

"You know we are now having debates in our congress and in states as to whether we're going to provide free lunch to kids in school, something I thought was resolved decades ago," Clinton said.

Clinton said her message to policymakers is "you just can never rest."

As far as transformations with AI, Altman added there will be much more to come.

"AI has already been a transformative, positive thing for education and it's just the very first glimpse," he said.

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