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AIs Should Have the Same Ethical Protections as Animals

John Basl and Eric Schwitzgebel: Discussions of ‘AI rights’ or ‘robot rights’ have so far been dominated by questions of what ethical obligations we would have to an AI of humanlike or superior intelligence — such as the android Data from Star Trek or Dolores from Westworld. But to think this way is to start in the wrong place, and it could have grave moral consequences. Before we create an AI with humanlike sophistication deserving humanlike ethical consideration, we will very likely create an AI with less-than-human sophistication, deserving some less-than-human ethical consideration.

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