Independent Media Agencies of Australia (IMAA) released its AI Guiding Principles to codify its use of AI and its role in helping members address the ever-evolving landscape.

The 10 principles, developed in collaboration with members and AI agency AirStack, are designed to guide independent media agencies as a starting point for strategic approaches to ethics, processes and client relations around AI. The IMAA AI Guiding Principles are:

  1. Set a strong ethical foundation: AI solutions should uphold standards of fairness, inclusivity and transparency and respect national human rights and cultural values.
  2. Aim for human-centric amplification: AI should be approached as a tool to augment and enhance human potential, not replace it. AI should be harnessed to improve human creativity, agility, capacity and capabilities.
  3. Maintain transparent processes: agencies need to be transparent with clients and customers about their AI processes.
  4. Provide continuous learning and collaboration: agencies are encouraged to regularly share insights, challenges and solutions and leverage the collective intelligence of the IMAA to stay abreast of AI advancements and best practices.
  5. Ensure equal opportunities: the approach to AI should focus on creating a level playing field for all Australian independent media agencies, regardless of their size and resources.
  6. Provide safety, reliability and confidence: an agency’s AI tools should be rigorously tested and secured to safeguard from potential vulnerabilities.
  7. Ensure strong data privacy and protection measures: agencies should prioritise data privacy and protection by adhering to national regulations and establishing internal guidelines, while also training their teams on best practices for handling data.
  8. Align actions to Australian values and net social outcomes: agencies should ensure their AI-driven operations support the Australian economy & are tailored to resonate with the nation’s unique media landscape.
  9. Ensure client collaboration and responsiveness to feedback: agencies should set opportunities for open dialogue and respond to feedback and guidance from stakeholders.
  10. Take proactive stances on regulation and policy: agencies should stay informed on wider policy discussions, and regularly seek to update and implement new processes.

The principles also outline the industry body’s vision for AI, particularly its focus on empowering members via collaboration, alignment and tools. The principles also include a commitment by the association to provide opportunities for members to learn more about AI through forums, engaging with industry experts, and delivering resources to upskill staff.

Sam Buchanan, IMAA CEO, said the principles aims to guide and empower the independent media sector in their AI journey, while ensuring responsible and ethical practices. AI has already made impactful changes to the media landscape and is predicted to deliver nearly $6.6 trillion in productivity by 2030, while breakthroughs in generative AI have the potential to drive a 7% increase in global GDP.

“Given AI’s rapid evolution, we believe it is crucial that we collaborate and unite to face the emerging opportunities, and the challenges, presented by AI. By aligning on the principles that will help govern AI use, particularly our commitment to ethics, trustworthiness and transparency, we’re promoting our members and protecting their reputation.

Buchanan said that as an organisation, the IMAA’s focus is on collaborating and working together to embrace AI in a way that enhances the organisation’s strengths and values and levels the playing field to ensure indies are treated equally and offered the same opportunities around AI and innovation.
“We now hope to provide opportunities for members to share their learnings and challenges, while delivering AI-related education to upskill staff, providing education, knowledge and insights to keep them ahead of the changes,” Buchanan added.

Article originally published on Mediaweek on the 16th January 2024.


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