Sundar Pichai Responds to Gemini AI Controversy: ‘Completely Unacceptable

Sundar Pichai Responds to Gemini AI Controversy: ‘Completely Unacceptable

Google CEO Sundar Pichai addressed the controversy surrounding its Gemini AI service, which has been generating misleading and historically inaccurate images. In an internal note on Tuesday, Pichai stated that the issue was “completely unacceptable,” acknowledging that some of Gemini’s responses had offended users and shown bias.

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He emphasized that this was not in line with Google’s commitment to providing helpful, accurate, and unbiased information in its products.

Pichai assured that teams were working tirelessly to address these issues and that the company had already seen a substantial improvement. He outlined a series of actions to resolve the problem, including structural changes, refreshed product guidelines, technical recommendations, better evaluations, and red-teaming (a process of simulating harmful behavior to spot vulnerabilities).

Despite the controversy, Pichai indicated that Google would continue with its AI roadmap and build on the product and technical announcements made in recent weeks. He stressed the importance of maintaining trust in Google’s products, including its emerging AI products.

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The controversy around Gemini’s image generation tool arose after users discovered that it could produce historically inaccurate images, such as Black Vikings, racially diverse Nazi soldiers, and a female pope. Billionaire Elon Musk, who is developing a competing AI, criticized Google’s service as “woke” and “racist.” Other outlets, like the Verge, pointed out Gemini’s inaccuracies, such as generating images of a Black woman when prompted for a “US senator from the 1800s,” despite the first Black woman being elected to the U.S. Senate in 1992.

In response to the backlash, Google paused Gemini’s ability to generate images of people and pledged to “further tune” the service to provide more accurate historical contexts. The controversy has had a significant impact on Google’s stock value, which fell by 3.58% since the end of last week, resulting in a $90 billion decrease in market cap.

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