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DMU expert calls for ban on robots that can be used for sex

A campaign has been launched by a De Montfort University researcher calling for a ban on the development of robots that can be used for sex, calling the trend “very disturbing indeed”.

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Campaign leader Dr Kathleen Richardson, a senior research fellow in the ethics of robotics at DMU, told the BBC today that such a use of the technology is unnecessary and undesirable.

Dr Richardson, who is based at the Centre for Computing and Social Responsibility at DMU, says they reinforce traditional stereotypes of women and the view that a relationship need be nothing more than physical.

Sex dolls already on the market are becoming more sophisticated and some companies are now hoping to build artificial intelligence into their products.

Those working in the field say that there is a need for such robots.

Dr Richardson says she wants to raise awareness of the issue and persuade those developing sex robots to rethink how their technology is used.

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"Sex robots seem to be a growing focus in the robotics industry and the models that they draw on - how they will look, what roles they would play - are very disturbing indeed," she told the BBC.

"We think that the creation of such robots will contribute to detrimental relationships between men and women, adults and children, men and men and women and women," she said.

The interview comes as the BBC runs a news series called Intelligent Machines which looks at the world of Artificial Intelligence, known as AI, and robotics. It asks the question “Will Artificial Intelligence ever match humans”.

You can read more about the Artificial Machines series on the BBC website by clicking here

Visit the campaign website here

 

Posted on Tuesday 15th September 2015

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