Thanks For Sharing

Yann LeCun — Meta-formerly-Facebook's outspoken chief AI scientist — kept things extremely normal this weekend when he took to Twitter to announce that humanity is but an endless struggle over evolution-ordained domination and submission.

"Most people have no problem leading groups of people who are smarter than themselves," tweeted LeCun, who's also an NYU professor. "Political, business, and military leaders have staff and advisors who are often smarter individually or collectively. Why would people feel threatened leading machines that are smarter than them?"

"Humans are hardwired by evolution to be a social species with hierarchical structure," he added. "This includes hardwired drives for dominance or submission. AI assistants will simply have hardwired drives to submit and not dominate."

Backtrack City

As you'd expect, some people took issue with LeCun's hardwiring claims, arguing that similar — and heavily debated — ideologies have been used to justify a lot of humanity's dehumanizing evils.

"We should be immensely worried that the people with the most power to sculpt the social architecture of the next decades promote the same kinds of pseudoscience used to justify slavery and segregation," wrote one concerned netizen.

"Keep your political beliefs out of the future of AI," added another, "especially the stuff that's been used to justify colonialism and racism for centuries."

These criticisms seemingly put LeCun on the defensive, causing the scientist to backtrack to what felt like a borderline nonsensical degree.

"I do not believe in any 'natural hierarchical structure,'" LeCun wrote in a response to his critics — directly contradicting himself — and said that he considers himself politically left-leaning. "But I don't let my political opinions get in the way of well-established science."

"The fact that hierarchical structures exist in human societies (which is undeniable)," he continued, "doesn't mean there exist [sic] some sort of preordained 'natural' hierarchy."

Puzzled? Us too.

Not Not Important

It's hard what to make of LeCun's self-defeating comments. But considering that he's undoubtedly one of the foremost figures in the field of AI — a technology that might just prove to be society-transforming — it's probably worth paying attention to.

Anyways, we'd love to get Meta overlord Mark Zuckerberg's take on the matter.

Share This Article