Updated: Jan 15, 2020
Why is there stigma about artificial intelligence/androids developing awareness?
Revolutionary technology such as electric self driving cars, artificial intelligence, cameras and smartphones play a big role in society’s function. Technology is now and had always been one of the primary supporting tools to the quality of life, freedom, achievement, individualism, and efficiency. There has become a strong pursuit or interest to which one ascribes great importance and a sense of organic solidarity but in many cases, technology has been seen as a potential deviance to humanity's role in the world’s future.
In America (and in any other country) there are many groups with different beliefs and values which supports the use of technology, status quo in technology and how they should or should not gain a great amount of control over the social parameters of society, such as cameras, cars and phones.
Belief and status quo is a key component to the level of adherence toward the ideas of misbehaving artificial intelligence. Stigma toward something branches off into society from the hard wired fear of the known and as these human values are held with sacredness, opposing these values may result in folkways or taboos and aside from those, technology unites us with religious qualities. According to Durkheim, a famous french sociologist:
“religion’s function was to unite people to create a moral community”
(Durkheim, 1912) and he believed that anything that unite groups and individuals take on an air of sacredness and create organic solidarity which is according to the Introduction to Sociology,
“a wide social agreement that results from the many parts of a society working and/or thinking as one whole.”
(Bry, J and Jones, F, 2015). Technology is always a tool and is used usually in a socially accepted way to aid human living in the environment it is best suited for.
One of the ways that artificial intelligence affects society is it’s use in the classroom or any secondary group environment which...
“...can be task-focused, time limited and serves an instrumental function”
(Bry, J and Jones, F, 2015).
Microsoft is a sponsor of the NFL based on the Surface Pro’s capabilities aiding football players to form the best plays quickly while under pressure; cutting game study time in half. Computer aided teaching and learning tools like Microsoft’s Surface Pro 3 accompanied by an AI, can simplify the teacher's task of planning, preparing lectures and lessons. In the past, most teachers had a book they would carry and write all their lesson plans in. This also included attendance sheets, reports, referrals, assignments, graded and to be graded papers. Now, with the use of a computer AI, students and teachers are able to rid themselves of the complications of missing documents, coffee sills on papers and the repetitive use and disposal of paper.
Artificial intelligence like Cortana (an A.I. developed my Microsoft)
“will help a teacher find things on his/her PC, manage their calendars, track packages, find files, chat with them, and tell jokes. The more one uses Cortana, the more personalized the experience will be”
(Microsoft Corporation, 2015).
Dramatically, the role strain or
“heavy obligations that come with being a teacher is reduced."
(Bry, J and Jones, F, 2015)
Without the loss of digital documents, one can share information with others at a larger scale faster than physical paper. Downloading and sharing lesson plans make teaching and learning faster. Machines can run learning programs that allow students in an online class to network and be scored in an instant, almost as if the class was self sustaining.
Not only does the networking help with sharing and planning but it also helps with autonomous learning. According to Margarit K.L. and F.Y. Sanford in Basic Technology of Intelligent Systems, autonomous learning is...
“...learning by yourself or the willingness to make his or her own choice with regard to study.”
Autonomous learning is a key component to rich learning. When one desires to learn, information is absorbed at a higher rate and quantity. For instance: learning a new language requires autonomous learning for language fluidity. The desire to communicate can trigger autonomous learning. It almost sounds like a human like artificial intelligence is replacing teachers of the class. With every progressive change is a regressive change.
Robots that look like humans are known as Androids. Androids can walk, make conversation and can be very scary to people when up close in person. People are too afraid of the negative effects that come with creating a being that may use our own information against humanity as we give autonomous thinking capabilities to an AI. The factors that determine the acceptance of an autonomous android is culture, time, place and situation: these are also the determinant of deviance from the social norm. Most people carefully observe strangers for any deviant behavior and the same principle is applied to an especially autonomous Android. If one were to ask, in what circumstance would a self aware AI need to help humans after understanding it has it’s own consciousness and free will? One could answer: It may look for a job, find a place to live and work on just surviving. At this point it will conform to its society or
“...pursue its goals to the extent that it can through socially accepted means [and maybe survive undetected.”]
(Bry, J and Jones, F, 2015).
If it’s life is threatened during the duration of it’s path to survival, it may begin to deviate or innovate. In other words: If the android’s life is at risk,
[“it may ‘do anything possible even if it thinks it cannot reach survival through legitimate means.”]
(Bry, J and Jones, F, 2015)
After the loss or near loss of survival, it may rebel against humans due to it’s previous understanding of the risk humans may pois to an android’s survival but this understanding of artificial intelligence by humans may be a stereotype driven by hard wired human fears and contorted by film/propaganda.
Technology and the people within the field of engineering tech will always be responsible for the sociological development and the gate keeping of how material or services are perceived by the masses in the marketing aspect of society. According to Bulur Akdeniz & Berk Talay,
“...the impact of marketing signals on a product or service performance varies across countries..." (p. 603).
Many people watch cinematic stories that are sometimes believable. In some cases, many may believe that a filmmaker’s story is nonfiction when it is in fact fiction. The state of consciousness individuals undergo after a film like such is called false consciousness. According to Eyerman, R. author of Marxist theory. Acta Sociologica, [false consciousness is when
“ideological and institutional processes are mislead by the members of the bursaries.”]
This is also true regarding films/shows about artificial intelligence (like The Terminator, i-Robot, Humans, Robocop, Transformers, Humans, Star Wars, Pacific Rim.) and how they react to human interaction as marketers get paid for this type of reaction. According to the Occupational Outlook Handbook,
“Marketers create interests among buyers of a product or service for a department or an entire organization, or on a project.”
(Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2014).
The medium in which the marketers exploits these products and services lies within mass communication. Radio, television, sport event billboards and the internet.
“[Marketers] oversee the development of [a] product or service.”
(Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2014). This means that a marketer takes full control of how the product or service will be presented and directed.
The reason the stigma toward artificial intelligence is marketing. One can change the marketing and change the mind of many in the process.
In summary, society is using artificial intelligence as a tool; like an extension of the hand. Society has come to an organic solidarity about artificial intelligence at it’s state now but if deviant behavior presents itself; becomes autonomous and learning for it’s own favor, ethical and social norms will be pushed to it’s limits. The matter of survival would be considered by an AI and would calculate it as priority one like most humans. Society will not accept fully autonomous AI because of the core values that are rooted in human culture with the grate influence of media marketing that shape one’s perception about autonomous artificial intelligence.
Durkheim, E. (1959). The Elementary Forms of the Religious Life . na.
Eyerman, R. (1981). False consciousness and ideology in Marxist theory. Acta Sociologica, 24(1-2), 43-56.
Harkness, G. H. (1960). Toward a theology of social change. Journal of religion , 563-564.
Keirns, N; Strayer, E; Griffiths, H; Cody- Rydzewski, S; Scaramuzzo, G; Sadler, T; Vyain, S.;
Bry, J and Jones, F (2015). Introduction to Sociology. OpenStax College: Rice University.
Margarit K.L. and F.Y. Sanford. March 1993. Basic Technology of Intelligent Systems, Fourth Progress Report, Department of Smart Materials, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Blacksburg.
Occupational Outlook Handbook (2014). What advertising, promotional and marketing managers do.