Wednesday, December 20, 2006

C3P0 may finally get some respect

6 months ago I was theorizing on the probability of people advocating for "robot rights."

Yesterday, the Financial Times revealed a British government-commissioned report were this very issue was tackled. From the article:

Robots and machines are now classed as inanimate objects without rights or
duties but if artificial intelligence becomes ubiquitous, the report argues,
there may be calls for humans’ rights to be extended to them.

It is also logical that such rights are meted out with citizens’
duties, including voting, paying tax and compulsory military service.

Mr Christensen said: “Would it be acceptable to kick a robotic dog even
though we shouldn’t kick a normal one?

“There will be people who can’t distinguish that so we need to have
ethical rules to make sure we as humans interact with robots in an ethical
manner so we do not move our boundaries of what is acceptable.”

The Horizon Scan report argues that if ‘correctly managed’, this new
world of robots’ rights could lead to increased labour output and greater

“If granted full rights, states will be obligated to provide full
social benefits to them including income support, housing and possibly
robo-healthcare to fix the machines over time,” it says.

Would robo-healthcare be granted regardless of where the robot is built? Will water-proof robots be crossing the Rio Grande to get it? Will they use their laser eyes to tear through the fence?


At 12:51 PM, December 20, 2006, Blogger sliverthetomcat said...

Are you positive that this was not an old review of the movie AI?
I think it just might be.


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