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The three laws of robotics were formulated by the writer Isaac Asimov in the story entitled “Vicious Circle“, published in 1942. These three laws read as follows:

1. A robot will not harm a human being or, through inaction, allow a human being to suffer damage.

2. A robot must make or carry out the orders given by human beings, unless these orders conflict with the 1st law.

3. A robot must protect its own existence to the extent that this protection does not conflict with the 1st or 2nd law.

In the universe of Asimov the laws are “mathematical formulations printed on the positronic paths of the brain” of robots, that is, a kind of source code that prevents artificial intelligence from rebelling against the human being. More than a science fiction writer, the three laws seem to be the work of a philosopher and their greatest merit is their simplicity.

The communicators are not worried about the effects of robotization on our profession, according to the 2017 edition of the European Communication Monitor. Many are not even busy exploring the paths that open with artificial intelligence and big data. Even half of the respondents to this study perceive robotization as a threat to their work.

Spurred by the curiosity of a phenomenon that brings us closer to technological uniqueness (the moment when an artificial intelligence, endowed with a greater computing capacity than a human brain, reaches such speed that no human being will be able to understand it or predict its behavior ), communicators have to put robots at the service of our function. For this it might be interesting to reformulate the three laws of Asimov in the key of communication. They would be like this:

1. A robot will not hurt the truth or, by inaction, allow a human being to be manipulated by biased or insufficient information.

2. A robot must transmit the facts, without emotions, that the communicator orders and provide the necessary sources and resources so that the receiver can compare and contrast them.

3. A robot must protect reciprocity in dialogue processes, so that the sender and receiver have the same opportunities to present their points of view.

The application of these three laws would banish post-truth, hinder malicious propaganda, uncover the lies and make truth the basic law of communication processes. Robots can bring rigor, equanimity and depth to a function that is seriously threatened by inaccuracy, primacy of emotions and frivolity. In fact, our main concern regarding robotization should be to investigate how machines can help us humanize and make communication processes more efficient. Because there is nothing that dehumanizes more than lies.


 Article published in number 136 of the AEDEMO magazine

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