An Ethical Trend?

Author: RoderickSpode ,

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  • RoderickSpode
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    RoderickSpode
    Here's a video addressing the currently controversial issue of robots produced for the purpose of sexual intimacy and companionship. You will have t sign in to confirm your age.


    Towards the end of the video, there's some interesting comments made by a woman named Kathleen Richardson, professor of Ethics and Culture of Robots and AI at De Montfort University in Leicester, England. She is an opponent of AI sex and companionship. She describes herself as a feminist humanist, so she's probably not religious. At least certainly not an evangelical Christian.


    Of course her main focus is on the objectification of women, although the production of love or sex robots include male figures.

    The interesting part is that Ms. Richardson is giving an argument that an evangelical Christian would. Thus the trend I'm referring to. In the past, there have been a number of ethical issues like abortion that were simply ethical in nature as opposed to religious. So when say, abortion became a public issue, it's morality was based not on religion but from just a simple general (or secular) standpoint. Basically, is it murder? Eventually, as the viewpoint
    gravitated towards the right for the woman to choose, abortion became a religious issue. Not all proponents of anti-abortion are religious, but for the most part it's considered a battle between the religious right, and the liberal left who allegedly sympathizes with the free-will of a woman.

    Moving forward into the future, let's view a very possible scenario where the sympathy is now gravitating towards lonely men (or women) who just cannot find love with a fellow human being. The (for lack of a better term) liberal left begins to argue that a lonely man or woman can genuinely love a robot, and the robot is not actually human, thus not a slave, and robots purchased as mates should be completely accepted. Even feminist activists sympathize with the lonely man or woman who simply want love, but not able to obtain it from a fellow human. Now many of the voices against robot sex that have replaced Ms. Richardson are evangelical Christians. Now, it's a religious, or secular vs. religious issue. As of right now, it doesn't seem to be a religious issue. Possibly because of it being in it's infancy stages. An issue not yet on the forefront.

    Anyone see a trend here?





  • Dr.Franklin
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    it's a symptom of a dying society
  • zedvictor4
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    --> @Dr.Franklin @RoderickSpode
    It's an evolutionary trend and therefore a symptom of a changing society.

    Nonetheless, ever since humans started to place sexual taboos in the way of sexual reality then methodology started to adapt also.

    It's very short sighted to assume that what one might consider to be normal and therefore righteous, has always been so and always will be so in the future. In other words there has and always will be a trend
    <br>

    How long before implants allow people to achieve effortless sexual fulfilment?

    Or perhaps better still, how about an implant that stops people worrying about the whole messy business of sex altogether.


  • RoderickSpode
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    --> @zedvictor4
    I think you're thinking of the evolution of modern convenience in relation to sex. Like the movie from the 60's called Barbarella starring Jane Fonda set in the cosmic future where a method was developed removing the need for physical contact in achieving sexual gratification. I think each partner took a pill and then faced each other in a patty-cake position where they only touched the palms of each other's hands. Of course the underlying message behind that was how silly of an idea that would be. Removing the pleasure of intimacy of physical contact for a contemporary convenience. That's not really what I'm talking about. The opponents of robotic sex are not making an argument against convenience. They're equating it to rape. And the major voice against robotic sex are not religious. There may be some Christians addressing it, but just a quick google search shows that it's humanists that are the main opponent at this point.

    Are you saying there really is no genuine ethics or morality when it comes to sex? It just evolves without rhyme or reason, and whatever becomes accepted is acceptable?
  • zedvictor4
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    --> @RoderickSpode
    Well.....Trends evolve.

    And I would argue that evolution is it's own logical explanation.
    We appear to have accepted the evolution of I.T. and mobile devices readily enough, with little moral and ethical consideration.

    As I stated previously sexual methodology has always been variable and never really held back by taboo or assumed ethics and morality.

    Anything other than consensual sex is rape regardless of methodology. So the rape argument seems somewhat misplaced.

    Sex is as sex does and sex is a base function and base requirement, not to be confused with all the socio-conceptual moral and ethical window dressing we apply to procreation.
    So if the needs of base function and requirement can be met robotically, then realistically there should be no moral or ethical dilemma.



  • ludofl3x
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    GOod to see you back Rod.

    What's the difference between a lonely woman using a sex robot for pleasure, and a woman using a vibrator for pleasure? 

    The ethics of the thing depend on if the robot is sentient in my view.
  • Salixes
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    --> @ludofl3x
    The ethics of the thing depend on if the robot is sentient in my view.
    If the robot were to be a male it would not make any difference whether it was sentient or not.

    On the other hand, if the robot were to be a lesbian, they would be both bitching about the ethics of it for hours afterward.
  • Greyparrot
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    --> @RoderickSpode
    Is it also rape if you substitute human companionship and human interactions with an iPhone?

    We are talking about a substitution here, people for technology, not indoctrination.

    If anything, sex robots will likely produce the same societal effect as iPhones currently do. A total sense of apathy toward actual people around them. That's very far from rape where the goal is to dominate an actual person with violence.

    And you have to wonder if these people wouldn't choose to be apathetic to others anyway without technological substitution as well. We used to just call those people hermits or monks. These people are also far from "rape culture."
  • Deb-8-a-bull
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    Deb-8-a-bull
    What if these robots had like a 7 year old boy and girl model. 

  • Greyparrot
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    --> @Deb-8-a-bull
    What if you drew neoteny drawings on your masturbation hand?
  • fauxlaw
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    --> @RoderickSpode @zedvictor4
    That the ability to make tools is evolutionary, specific types of tools for specific uses is not evolutionary; it's revolutionary.
    That said, the construct of the type of tools used in this string does not matter if they are evo-, or revo-; they are, in the end, a morality tale. Rather, ethical, perhaps. 
    In either instance, these tools represent a counterfeit of the fulfillment of human sexual activity, whether it is strictly for entertainment value, or something more personal, more satisfying, and more intimate: an expression of love for one another. Can a person have entertainment from a tool? Yes. There are a plethora of tools we use daily for entertainment, and they function very well as far as the desire to be entertained goes. In fact, it is difficult to take the entertainment value out of these tools; we even can invent new uses for these tools not intended by the original designer's intent.
    However, can a person experience shared love with such tools? For that matter, a shared emotion of any description? That we can invent, and produce tools that offer a simulation of emotional attachment, the "emotion" is generated by a series of code, and not by the honest, fresh, and naturally occurring inventive root of a living, natural being. Yeah, I'm even talking about the attachment that we can form with other animals [although that is out of the realm of the subject at hand, I contend: sexual fulfillment].
  • Dr.Franklin
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    --> @zedvictor4
    it's not evolutionary, values are dead and this is why these exist,m if you buy this, you throw away all of your sanity