The growing power and availability of emerging technology, such as artificial intelligence, make the risks of these technologies too big to ignore, according to a May 2023 slide deck, titled “The Four Addictions,” from Bruce Mehlman, who co-founded the Internet Innovation Alliance in 2004 after serving as Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Tech Policy. Mehlman’s research and policy analysis focuses on overcoming unsustainable dependencies in the 21st century, including China, digital, easy money and debt.

On digital, Mehlman highlights several interesting trends:

Both the number of global internet users and Americans’ daily hours online continue their steep climbs.

In tandem, the Digital Revolution is driving our world to become better, smarter and faster. Benefits that Mehlman cites include:

  • Faster innovation
  • Higher productivity
  • Greater access to knowledge
  • More efficient operations
  • Lower costs / less inflation
  • New voices heard
  • New products & services

And just like everyone is online everywhere, all the time, so is the push to regulate (it’s everywhere, all the time). While different entities are approaching consumer protection, competition policy, national security and the social compact with different degrees of urgency, governments across the board are expanding in their efforts to regulate tech.

For more expert insight on how world leaders are approaching the digital world, see Mehlman’s full report.