[NetBehaviour] Android rights.

marc marc.garrett at furtherfield.org
Thu Jan 4 17:18:39 CET 2007

Android rights.

The label 'animal rights activist' is one we all understand. Perhaps in 
the future we will be just as familiar with 'android rights activists'.

Two recent and respectable predictions of tussles over robot rights 
suggest we might. Reports looking 50 years into the future commissioned 
by the UK government predicted that advanced, conscious robots would 
want rights like those we enjoy. With such rights responsibilities might 
also come, like voting, taxes and military service, the report said.

It sounds reasonable, if distant. I think an academic paper in a special 
issue of the journal Connection Science makes a better point. David 
Calverley, a lawyer from Arizona State University suggests an analogy 
between robot and animal rights. It's an issue we'll have to deal with a 
lot sooner than whether robots should pay tax.


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