Mark Coeckelbergh

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Should we grant rights to artificially intelligent robots? Most current and near-future robots do not meet the hard criteria set by deontological and utilitarian theory. Virtue ethics can avoid this problem with its indirect approach. However, both direct and indirect arguments for moral consideration rest on ontological features of entities, an approach(More)
The development of pet robots, toy robots, and sex robots suggests a near-future scenario of habitual living with ‘personal’ robots. How should we evaluate their potential impact on the quality of our lives and existence? In this paper, I argue for an approach to ethics of personal robots that advocates a methodological turn from robots to humans, from mind(More)
This paper argues that our understanding of many human-robot relations can be enhanced by comparisons with human-animal relations and by a phenomenological approach which highlights the significance of how robots appear to humans. Some potential gains of this approach are explored by discussing the concept of alterity, diversity and change in human-robot(More)
Can we build ‘moral robots’? If morality depends on emotions, the answer seems negative. Current robots do not meet standard necessary conditions for having emotions: they lack consciousness, mental states, and feelings. Moreover, it is not even clear how we might ever establish whether robots satisfy these conditions. Thus, at most, robots could be(More)
Contemporary health care relies on electronic devices. These technologies are not ethically neutral but change the practice of care. In light of Sennett's work and that of other thinkers (Dewey, Dreyfus, Borgmann) one worry is that "e-care"--care by means of new information and communication technologies--does not promote skilful and careful engagement with(More)
Many philosophical and public discussions of the ethical aspects of violent computer games typically centre on the relation between playing violent videogames and its supposed direct consequences on violent behaviour. But such an approach rests on a controversial empirical claim, is often one-sided in the range of moral theories used, and remains on a(More)
Can we trust robots? Responding to the literature on trust and e-trust, this paper asks if the question of trust is applicable to robots, discusses different approaches to trust, and analyses some preconditions for trust. In the course of the paper a phenomenological-social approach to trust is articulated, which provides a way of thinking about trust that(More)
Contemporary technology creates a proliferation of nonhuman artificial entities such as robots and intelligent information systems. Sometimes they are called ‘artificial agents’. But are they agents at all? And if so, should they be considered as moral agents and be held morally responsible? They do things to us in various ways, and what happens can be and(More)
How should we make sense of ‘personal’ human-robot relations, given that many people view robots as ‘mere machines’? This paper proposes that we understand human-robot relations from a phenomenological view as social relations in which robots are constructed as quasi-others. It is argued that language mediates in this construction. Responding to research by(More)