Jon Stewart Confirms Apple Wouldn't Let Him Do Show on AI With FTC Chair

Jon Stewart interviewed Federal Trade Commission Chair Lina Khan on Monday night’s episode of The Daily Show, alongside a segment on how artificial intelligence is taking jobs. Stewart says Apple wouldn’t let him do either on his Apple TV show The Problem with Jon Stewart, which was canceled roughly six months ago.

“I wanted to have you on a podcast, and Apple asked us not to do it, to have you. They literally said, ‘Please, don’t talk to her,’” Stewart said in an interview with Khan. “They wouldn’t let us even do that dumb thing we did in the first act on AI. What is that sensitivity? Why are they so afraid to even have these conversations out in the public sphere?”

Lina Khan – FTC Chair on Amazon Antitrust Lawsuit & AI Oversight | The Daily Show

Stewart came down, unsurprisingly, as critical of artificial intelligence in an earlier segment of the episode. He focused on how AI is taking jobs and tore down Big Tech’s all-too-familiar claims that people will simply be retrained into new jobs such as “prompt engineers.” Stewart drew comparisons to similar claims made around the fall of the coal industry, where politicians and industry leaders claimed miners would simply be retrained as electricians and programmers. A quick visit to coal mining towns across America shows that transition never happened, and Stewart is skeptical of this AI transition as well.

The Problem with Jon Stewart was canceled in October of last year, reportedly due to the veteran TV host’s views on AI and China, according to The New York Times. Apple reportedly informed him that Stewart needed to be “aligned” with their values, a proposition that the seasoned host balked at.

Apple has been silent over Jon Stewart’s canceled show. They did not immediately respond to Gizmodo’s request for comment on Tuesday.


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