The Three Laws of Robotics Applied to Social Networks

asimovIsaac Asimov wrote the famous three laws of robotics in the early 40s and appeared for the first time in 1942 in his short story “Runaround”. Here they are:

  1. A robot may not injure a human being or, through inaction, allow a human being to come to harm.
  2. A robot must obey any orders given to it by human beings, except where such orders would conflict with the First Law.
  3. A robot must protect its own existence as long as such protection does not conflict with the First or Second Law.

The purpose of the three laws is to save humans from their own creations. This purpose can be applied to whatever human creations. In the Social Media time we’re living, we could apply the 3 laws adapted to Social Networks in this way:

  1. A profile on a Social Network should not damage the true identity of a person or, by misuse, to drive a person to be perceived as who isn’t.
  2. The activity on Social Networks will enhance the relationship with others, help to share knowledge and, in the case of a company or brand, expand the ties of sympathy and affinity, unless such activity conflicts with the First Law.
  3. The presence in Social Networks must protect its own existence as well as data privacy, freedom of information and honesty of the relationships established, as long as such protection does not conflict with the First or Second Law.

Social Networking, in the Social Media environment, does not make us stop what we are, people. The digital identity makes you no bit, or robot, doesn’t invalidate our values, our ethics or our principles. It doesn’t dehumanize us. We are the only ones that can dehumanize, and would be interesting not to do so.

Note: I wrote this post originally in Spanish. This is an English translation to share these thoughts with our English speaker friends and followers. A better English version would be nicely appreciated ;-). . Thanks a lot to everybody.