A Defense of the Rights of Artificial Intelligences

Tuesday, Oct 25, 2016 - 3:00pm to 4:30pm

The Jacob Marschak Interdisciplinary Colloquium on Mathematics in the Behavioral Sciences at UCLA

There are possible artificially intelligent beings who do not differ in any morally relevant respect from human beings.  Such possible beings would deserve moral consideration similar to that of human beings.  Our duties to them would not be appreciably reduced by the fact that they are non-human, nor by the fact that they owe their existence to us.  Indeed, if they owe their existence to us, we would likely have additional moral obligations to them that we don’t ordinarily owe to human strangers – obligations similar to those of parent to child or god to creature. 

Eric Schwitzgebel and Mara Garza from UC Riverside will explore the belief that, given our moral obligations to such AIs, two principles for ethical AI design recommend themselves: design AIs that tend to provoke reactions from users that accurately reflect the AIs’ real moral status, and avoid designing AIs the moral status of which is unclear.  Since human moral intuition and moral theory evolved and developed in contexts without AI, those intuitions and theories might break down or become destabilized when confronted with the wide range of weird minds that AI design might make possible.

Light refreshments will be served. Please RSVP as seating is limited.

Schwitzgebel is a professor of philosophy, and Garza is a doctoral candidate in philosopy, both at UC Riverside.