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Technology, Attachment, & Do you feel a personal attachment to any of your technological possessions–computers, cell phones, or otherwise? Would you feel sad or lonely if you were deprived of them for a day?

“I would actually feel pretty liberated; I feel almost compulsively connected. At the same time, I might become a little bored since I wouldn’t have the constant influx of information.”

“No, that’s just weird and dis-­ turbing. Biologically speaking, sex should be for reproduction. Soci-­ etally, it can also be used to form an attachment between two people as a demonstration of love. If neither of these things is being accomplished, it shouldn’t happen.”

“I think it’s fine (people can do whatever they want) but it would be very unfortunate if someone developed an emotion-­ al attachment to said robot.”

“Yes, I love my Sony Vaio laptop, Socrates.”

Do you think it is ethical to have sex with a robot? Why or why not?

“The ethical dilemma arises when the opportunity cost of robot sex is an abandoned partner or even non-­sexual friends. With none of the limitations of a human-­human relationship, it is easy to imagine that someone could become obsessed or addicted to the gratifica-­ tion provided by having a “partner” who requires no care, nurturing, re-­ spect, engagement, etc. “

“My only ethical con-­ cern is that I think it could be harmful in the sense that it would ‘dehumanize’ the ‘sexual partner’ in a way that would impact how individuals (espe-­ cially women) are treated.”

“... if you feel no discomfort at the thought of having sex with a robot, then it’s perfectly ethi-­ cal (provided you aren’t hurting someone else like your signifi-­ cant other in doing so).”


“Sure—but they are replaceable and my attachment is to the connections provided by the technology, not to the specific devices. Deprived of all devices for a day, I would make those connections in person (to the extent possible) and not feel sad or lonely about it. In fact, it would be great to have that “push” to go outside more and enjoy the beautiful beginnings of spring.”

“Would it do the laundry?” “How much would this cost? There is an off-­switch, right?”

“Owning wouldn’t be classy”

Do you think you an emotional at ...a fictional character?

YES: 70.2% NO: 29.8% ‡´<RXGLG127ZDQWWRJHWEH-­ tween me and my Harry Potter books in sixth grade” ‡´3HRSOHFU\LQERRNVDQGPRY-­ ies because they are attached to the characters when something bad happens... [This is] not say-­ ing a true sexual or romantic at-­ tachment.” ‡´1RWKLQJVWURQJHUWKDQWKHDW-­ tachment I feel toward real peo-­ ple, but I definitely get emotion-­ ally attached to book and movie characters.”

Would you ever consider owning a sex robot?

Profile for Encompass Magazine

Encompass Magazine -- Spring 2011  

Ethics in technology

Encompass Magazine -- Spring 2011  

Ethics in technology