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Westworld : Simulations

PostPosted: October 11th, 2016, 1:17 am
by BadgerJelly
Westworld is a new series. Basically it is an artificial world made for people to enter amd play out their fantasies in the wild west. In the series there are AI robots who play out certain roles simulating fear, pain, lust etc.,.

My question is that if you enter this world and it is impossible to distinguish these "artifical" people from real people are you morally justified in commiting acts that you would be uncomfortable to commit on real people?

I can see some moral justification for exploring some subtle moral boundaries, but for acts such as rape and murder (committed in the series) that simulate the pain of a real human can this be morally justified by an individual. Logically, on the surface at least, there does not seem to be a direct problem because you know the person you are abusing is not a real person. I imagine most people have thought, in passing, about committing such acts and felt uncomfortable with such thoughts so I question the effect of physically acting out such things in a physically artifical world.

What are your thoughts about what you would consider morally justified? Would you try and kill one of these artifical people purely out of curiosity or do you prefer to think you'd find it too morally repulsive to carry out the simulated act?

I do find that when I really think about this it worries me that I am uncertain about how far I would push my moral boundaries and what damage this could cause to an individual long term.

Re: Westworld : Simulations

PostPosted: October 11th, 2016, 12:00 pm
by TheVat
Wow, terrific thread idea! I tend to think that actions, even in a simulation, would have the harmful moral effect of whetting one's appetite for violence and abuse. So increasing the chance that it would spill into the real world. To me, it's best to cultivate a calm and kind mind in all universes, real or not.

Re: Westworld : Simulations

PostPosted: October 15th, 2016, 4:01 pm
by edy420
Some people are just violent.
With sex offenders, they have a chance to reoffend even after rehabilitation.

I wonder if this could work as a form of therapy, where we observe their behaviour and have them practice self control.
Then program the robots give in willingly as progress is made.