Segments in this Video

Introduction: Don't Trust the Promise of Artificial Intelligence (05:18)


Moderator John Donvan introduces Bob Rosenkranz and Dr. Gail Salt who frame the debate about artificial intelligence and social good.

Debate "Housekeeping" (07:37)

Donvan considers the Hollywood version of robots, introduces the panelists, and explains the debate format. Audience members record their preliminary votes.

For the Motion: Jaron Lanier (07:16)

Computer scientist, composer, and author, Lanier recalls his mentor Marvin Minsky and states that ideas about artificial intelligence (AI) evolved into orthodoxy. The engineering and science behind AI and the fantasy narrative are two distinct things. In engineering, defining a measurable baseline is crucial or it "goes off the rails."

Against the Motion: Martine Rothblatt (07:19)

United Therapeutics CEO and author Rothblatt, states the promise of AI revolves around replication, application, and fascination. The promise of AI is a replication of consciousness that will be useful; we will love the friendly AI.

For the Motion: Andrew Keen (07:59)

FutureCast Executive Director and author Keen, states that it is not outrageous to believe we can replicate the human mind but we need to separate science from belief. How can you moralize AI without humanizing it? The promise of AI technology is moving faster than humanity.

Against the Motion: James Hughes (06:03)

Institute for Ethics and Emerging Technologies Executive Director and author, Hughes states that AI is an extension of human capacity— a codification of how we do things together. Focusing on AI as a panacea or a cause of social ills is a distraction.

We Will Love Artificial Intelligence (05:51)

Donvan summarizes the panelists' opening statements. Lanier states that if you take AI too seriously, you make the computer seem smarter and a unified backlash to the arrogance of technology can occur. Rothblatt states we will love AI like we love our pets.

Worrying about AI (04:36)

Keen challenges Rothblatt's example of the printing press and states that open source technology has had no success in the digital world. Hughes believes in the inevitability of technological unemployment, but it may be a good idea; creative jobs are immune.

Freestanding AI? (03:22)

Lanier explains premature mystery reduction; most AI depends on using what people do. Rothblatt argues that technological innovation will not result in mass unemployment.

AI and Jobs (03:24)

Keen identifies a contradiction in the opponents' arguments about jobs. Keen and Rothblatt debate the validity of economists' perspective on AI. Lanier states the danger is that we will pretend people are obsolete.

Replicating Humans (03:55)

Hughes believes a significant amount of anthropomorphic projection surrounds the future of AI; we do not know what artificial minds will be like. Keen uses Google as an example of aggregated intelligence. Rothblatt argues Google will become irrelevant.

Promise of the Collective (02:58)

Lanier states that "we can only know our own consciousness." He describes technology companies as de facto governments. Hughes states that we have to determine what a person is.

QA: Computers Smarter than Humans (01:45)

Rothblatt states that for AI to be intelligent, it needs to be as human as we are to maintain a continuum of consciousness. Lanier counters that we need to treat AI as a tool.

QA: What is AI? (04:58)

Hughes states that AI is an extension of human intelligence. Lanier states that AI incorporates a range of disciplines; the field has "lots its moorings to fantasy." Rothblatt discusses the desire to create artificial people.

QA: Politics, Optimism, and AI (01:46)

Hughes states that the smarter we get, the more real democracy becomes; democracy is maturing.

QA: Do we have the Moral and Intellectual Ability to Handle AI? (01:34)

Hughes does not believe that AI raises fundamentally different questions than previous technologies.

QA: Distinguishing Conscious and Unconscious Beings (04:17)

Lanier states that most of humankind's problems are self-generated. Rothblatt agrees that humanity is at war with itself, but that we have had large successes.

QA: Hollywood AI vs Reality (04:36)

Keen refutes the sensational enemy version of AI. Hughes agrees that the problems of AI are jobs, algorithm ownership, and how humans benefit as a species. Lanier states that the mythology of an "evil machine" hurts our ability to design well-functioning machines that we can responsibly use.

Concluding Statement For: Jaron Lanier (02:29)

Do not relinquish human responsibility. AI rehashes human intelligence and activities.

Concluding Statement Against: James Hughes (01:50)

Nicolas de Caritat, Marquis de Condorcet wrote a history of human progress and predicted that science and technology would create a society free of work, disease, and death. Recognizing human progress and maintaining optimism will allow humanity to use AI to create a better future.

Concluding Statement For: Andrew Keen (02:39)

It is absurd to believe in the elimination of work. We value people because of their complexity; replicating that complexity is a dangerous fantasy.

Concluding Statement Against: (02:38)

Think of AI as an art project. We can trust the promise of AI because we can trust the collective intelligence behind it.

Time to Vote (03:49)

Donvan instructs the audience to vote, thanks panelists and supporters, and introduces the next Intelligence Squared Debate.

Audience Vote Results (01:06)

Pre-Debate - For: 30% - Against: 41% - Undecided: 29% Post-Debate - For: 59% - Against: 30% - Undecided: 11%

Credits: Don't Trust the Promise of Artificial Intelligence: A Debate (00:50)

Credits: Don't Trust the Promise of Artificial Intelligence: A Debate

For additional digital leasing and purchase options contact a media consultant at 800-257-5126
(press option 3) or

Artificial Intelligence: The Risks Could Outweigh the Rewards: A Debate

DVD (Chaptered) Price: $169.95
DVD + 3-Year Streaming Price: $254.93
3-Year Streaming Price: $169.95



As technology rapidly progresses, some proponents of artificial intelligence argue that it will help solve complex social problems and offer humans greater powers and virtual immortality. But critics of artificial intelligence argue that its rewards may be overpromised, and that the pursuit of super-cognitive computers and autonomous machines could have unintended—and scary—consequences. Should we trust or fear the promise of artificial intelligence?

Length: 101 minutes

Item#: FMK116097

ISBN: 978-1-63521-210-5

Copyright date: ©2016

Closed Captioned

Performance Rights

Prices include public performance rights.

Not available to Home Video customers.