On Human Genome Manipulation and Homo technicus: The Legal Treatment of Non-natural Human Subjects

AI and Ethics 1 (3):331-345 (2021)
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Although legal personality has slowly begun to be granted to non-human entities that have a direct impact on the natural functioning of human societies (given their cultural significance), the same cannot be said for computer-based intelligence systems. While this notion has not had a significantly negative impact on humanity to this point in time that only remains the case because advanced computerised intelligence systems (ACIS) have not been acknowledged as reaching human-like levels. With the integration of ACIS in medical assistive technologies such as companion robots and bionics, our legal treatment of ACIS must also adapt—least society faces legal challenges that may potentially lead to legally sanctioned discriminatory treatment. For this reason, this article exposes the complexity of normalizing definitions of “natural” human subjects, clarifies how current bioethical discourse has been unable to effectively guide ACIS integration into implanted and external artefacts, and argues for the establishment of legal delineations between various ACIS-human mergers in reference to legal protections and obligations internationally.

Author's Profile

Tyler Jaynes
University of Utah


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