Instigator / Pro
0
1494
rating
11
debates
40.91%
won
Topic
#5281

Uploading your consciousness to the internet is not suicide.

Status
Finished

The debate is finished. The distribution of the voting points and the winner are presented below.

Winner & statistics
Winner
0
0

After not so many votes...

It's a tie!
Parameters
Publication date
Last updated date
Type
Standard
Number of rounds
4
Time for argument
Two days
Max argument characters
3,000
Voting period
One month
Point system
Winner selection
Voting system
Open
Contender / Con
0
1706
rating
562
debates
68.06%
won
Description

Imagine that a tech billionaire finds a way to upload human consciousness to the internet, sort of like in 'The Matrix' (movie).
Uploading your mind to the internet will result in the death of your biological brain, but a copy of your consciousness will live immortally on the internet.
This isn't how it works in the matrix movie, but just bear with me.

I will be arguing that uploading your consciousness to the internet is not suicide.
So to win this debate, you must prove that uploading your consciousness to the internet is suicide.

Round 1
Pro
#1
Merriam Webster's definition of life:
The sequence of physical and mental experiences that make up the existence of an individual.
What happens if you upload your mind to the internet?
In my hypothetical situation, one's consciousness is preserved.
That means that one's life is preserved, according to this definition.
Thus, uploading one's mind to the internet is not suicide.

Merriam Webster's definition of suicide: 
The act or an instance of taking one's own life voluntarily and intentionally.
The keyword here is 'intentionally.'

So now it is your job to prove 1 and 2:
  1. People who decide to upload their mind to the internet have the intent to kill themselves.
  2. People who decide to upload their mind to the internet succeed in killing themselves.

Con
#2
Merriam Webster's definition of suicide: 
The act or an instance of taking one's own life voluntarily and intentionally.
The keyword here is 'intentionally.'
I couldn't agree more.

This leads me wonderfully into my case.

Every second you die. The you right now is alive and yet at the end of this sentence is dead, with the present you being the future self of that. However, that's not suicide, that's something you can't escape because of the structure of time and cell regeneration in our reality making it unintentional.

In the scenario Pro offers us, you are opting in to the uploading of consciousness, which entails the slaughter/termination/murder/ending of your physical body and brain (or maybe only the brain?)

I am unsure if Pro is looking for the technicality that the body lives on with the brain being dead but breathing requires brain function so even if Pro is arguing you're a vegetable that's technically alive on a series of machines forcing oxygenation etc, your brain is permanently dead and thus so is your experience of reality, that's irrefutable as the description says your brain dies during the process.

Really, this boils down to what 'you' are and the intent to kill yourself.

If person A is so mentally deficient/disabled that they rape, kill, steal etc without knowing to, in a legal system we have a concept known as insanity plea but I am unsure if lack of intelligence and awareness is the same as insanity, I assert it isn't and will let Pro make the case. Thus, even if the person uploading is too intellectually deficient to acknowledge and know they're killing themselves, their intentional actions do kill themselves. I would argue that suicidal manslaughter of the self due to intellectual disability and/or ignorance is still a form of suicide even if Pro is arguing it's not premeditated murder.

If your intent is to do something that is killing yourself but you perceive it as not killing yourself, you entirely intended on the actions while being too stupid, confused and/or ignorant to grasp the gravity of what you're doing.

The experience you have in life is often influenced by hormones and physical sensations. The orgasm a cisgender woman experiences is so utterly different to that of a cisgender man, for instance, as well as many other parts of the brain and experience.

I am not arguing this is all to do with the body, I am saying there's an interaction between brain and body that lead to the phenomenon of your consciousness. That 'self' in the computer system can output speech and maybe mimic facial expressions of you but it can never experience how your brain in the physical body did. It can't feel excited or scaredas adrenaline pumps, nor can it react to testosterone and oestrogen how we do. Pain, pleasure and so much more can't properly function as experiences in a non-physical mimickery of the original 'you'. You killed yourself, even if your silly brain doesn't acknowledge this consequence.
Round 2
Pro
#3
You took my definition of life, and you flipped it on its head without offering a counter-definition.

Merriam Webster's definition of life:
The sequence of physical and mental experiences that make up the existence of an individual.
According to this definition, as long as you are experiencing things, you are alive, even if your biological brain has died.
That is an indisputable fact until you offer a counter definition.

My reasoning still stands:
What happens if you upload your mind to the internet?
In my hypothetical situation, one's consciousness is preserved.
That means that one's life is preserved, according to my definition of life.
Thus, uploading one's mind to the internet is not suicide.

You also said this:
If your intent is to do something that is killing yourself but you perceive it as not killing yourself, you entirely intended on the actions while being too stupid, confused and/or ignorant to grasp the gravity of what you're doing.
Yes, you can kill yourself without having the intent to kill yourself.
But you can only commit suicide if you have the intent to commit suicide.
Killing yourself is only considered suicide if suicide is your end goal in mind.`
Con
#4
The sequence of physical and mental experiences that make up the existence of an individual.

The reason Pro is able to pivot around the 'and' in his definition of 'suicide' is because the word and does not allow 'or' cancellation.

So, when the definition of suicide is:
The act or an instance of taking one's own life voluntarily and intentionally.
I cannot solely stick to the voluntary aspect, I am forced to defend against the intent.

This is because Pro knows:

and' provides inclusiveness. by saying "A and B", it means BOTH A and B. you may use 'and' in positive and negative sentences.
'or' provides exclusiveness between choices. by saying "A or B", it means ONLY ONE between A and B can be considered. If you choose A, then it is not B. and vice versa. you may use 'or' in positive and negative sentences.

The physical parts of life are essential to that sequence.

The experience also ends. This wasn't contested by Pro at all. From orgasms through to the sensation of tired brain, dreams and hormones related to anxiety vs excitement... It requires physical hormones and physical brain structure. What is inside that computer is a replica that acts like you, it isn't you. If it is somehow conscious, it's a new you akin to a clone except this is not even close to being a clone as it lacks all the physical hormones and brain structure that led to your quintessential experience of life.

I even argued that you die constantly and can't help it as time passes, this wasn't contested by Pro.

====

Abusive hypothetical contradiction

There is an idea I had between Round 1 and now. I apologise for not raising it in Round 1 but the character limit also restricted me going deep into it anyway.

The hypothetical has an inherently corrupt contradiction that rigs this in favour of Pro, at least in Pro's eyes of how 'intent' works. In this hypothetical, the person is giving consent to the termination of their physical brain yet Pro suggests they are duped or ill-informed about the true consequences of that.

For someone to be so ignorant of the consequences is akin to why a child or Down's syndrome person can't properly consent to things and why the phrase 'informed consent' has the first part of it.

To truly say the person intentionally killed their brain is to say they killed themselves, since I have explained that their experience relies on brain structure and hormones interacting in a combined phrase we call 'brain chemistry'. Once this ends, so does their experience of life, that's a replica in the computer system that I predict only acts like them but even if it is conscious is not them.
Round 3
Pro
#5
You said this:
The physical parts of you are essential to your life.
My definition of life was:
The sequence of physical and mental experiences that make up the existence of an individual.
The 'and' in this sentence is clearly being used as an or operator. No linguist would tell you otherwise.
The reason an 'or' wasn't used in place of the 'and' is because the word 'or' actually means an exclusive or operator.

If the definition of life is "The sequence of physical [and operator] mental experiences that make up the existence of an individual"
  • Then a plant would not be considered living because a plant has no mental experiences.
If the definition of life is "The sequence of physical [or operator] mental experiences that make up the existence of an individual"
  • A plant has no mental experiences, but a plant does have physical experiences, and so it is considered living.
  • A computerized human brain has no physical experiences, but it does have mental experiences, and so it is considered living.
  • Now it all makes sense! 
You also said this:
The hypothetical has an inherently corrupt contradiction that rigs this in favor of Pro, at least in Pro's eyes of how 'intent' works. In this hypothetical, the person is giving consent to the termination of their physical brain yet Pro suggests they are duped or ill-informed about the true consequences of that.
When did I say that that the people were ill-informed about the true consequences of uploading their mind to the internet?
Uploading your mind to the internet will result in the death of your biological brain, but a copy of your consciousness will continue on the internet.
The people are fully aware of this, and they are left to chew on the implications.
You seem to be giving me an argument about informed consent, which is not what we are talking about here.
Anybody who decides to upload their consciousness to the internet does not have the intent to kill themselves.
Therefore, uploading your mind to the internet cannot be considered suicide.

Remember judges, I win this debate if I prove either 1 or 2:
  1. People who decide to upload their mind to the internet do not have the intent to kill themselves. (proved)
  2. People who decide to upload their mind to the internet do not succeed in killing themselves. (proved)

Con
#6
Okay there are only two things actually relevant tot he debate in all Pro said there, which I hadn't already fully replied to.

Pro is going all-in on the angle that a vegetable with no brain is alive. I argue this is abusive moving of the goalposts because Pro's definition never mentions that they're kept alive long term body-wise while their computer version is existing. That also makes you wonder why the fuck they're even doing it if they're body is able to keep going and is healthy.

If that's the level we're going to that they commit brain suicide but despite the description not at all specifying or implying it, their body's kept alive as a mindless vegetable, then you decide as voters if that's abusive goalpost moving or not.

===

The issue of informed consent and 'intent'

The person is informed their brain will completely die. I have established again and again that the replica of their behaviour and thinking patterns inside the computer system is an AI replica. It is not them and even if somehow it has an experience it's nothing like a living brain with hormones and brain structure because literally it can't experience emotions or surges of libido and all of that.
Round 4
Pro
#7
Forfeited
Con
#8
  • The brain definitely dies, they commit suicide in their mind/brain.
  • It is absurd to suggest that resources are wasted ti keep the body alive in vegetable form when this wasn't specified in the description. A person committing suicide in their brain who has a body that can last long term as a vegetable is definitely committing irrational brain-suicide at the very least.
  • The replica of their speech patterns and maybe facial expressions inside ethe computer systems has to be an AI replica completely having zero experience alike the brain that was killed which can experience orgasms through to adrenaline rushes through to tiredness, sleep and dreams. A huge proportion of a brain's experience is physically stimulated with no computer alternative at all.
  • The person is informed of all of this or is not giving informed consent. If they are not giving informed consent then this is murder or manslaughter but even then it's also self induced. If I talk you into killing yourself by lying and gaslighting and prey on your naivety, desperation and/or ignorance I am definitely a manslaughter or even some form of murderer especially if I supply you with he tools to kill your brain. You also are committing suicide even if you believe anything like an afterlife is on the other side.