In Defence of Sex Machines: Why Trying to Ban Sex Robots is Wrong

A recent campaign argues that a ban should be placed on the development of sex robots. While well-intentioned, it’s a shortsighted idea that fails to recognize the ways in which these technologies will help us explore new ideas of inclusivity, legality, and social change. “Ban sex robots!” scream the tech headlines, as if they’re heralding the arrival of the latest artificial intelligence threat to humankind since autonomous killer robots. The campaign, led by academics Kathleen Richardson and Erik Billing, argues that the development of sex robots should be stopped because it reinforces or reproduces existing inequalities. Yes, society has enough problems with gender stereotypes, entrenched sexism and sexual objectification. But actual opposition to developing sexual robots that aims for an outright ban? That seems shortsighted, even—pardon the pun—undesirable. Advertisement Existing…


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