Argumentative Essay on Treating Robots Like People

Argumentative Essay on Treating Robots Like People


 The development of sophisticated artificial intelligence (AI) has led to numerous hot discussions about the ethical implications of how people should interact with robots. With all the technological advancements, robots become more anthropomorphic in their appearance and conduct, one faces the question: is it appropriate or ethical to treat robots as if they were people?

Arguments of the Proponents

Those who support the idea of treating robots like humans argue that these machines can simulate human emotions and responses, demonstrating even a sense of empathy and attachment. Moreover, robots that can communicate on a rather high level and that are human-like might evoke emotional responses from individuals. So, proponents insist that such interaction with robots in a human-like manner could enhance social interaction and put human-machine relationships to the next level (Bhandari, 2020).

The proponents indicate several potential benefits of such interactions in specific domains. For instance, imagine this picture: human-like robots supporting isolated patients in the hospital so that they receive some emotional comfort. Not bad, right? This can bring definite benefits to such spheres as healthcare and therapy. Moreover, the use of robotic assistance for the elderly and people with disabilities as well as therapeutic robots for children with autism demonstrates the potential for these machines to provide psychological comfort and assistance (Boyle, Saklofske & Matthews, 2014).

Arguments of the Opponents

Despite the considerable advantages, there are still ethical dilemmas about human-robot interactions that need to be discussed publicly. Thus, enhancing robots so that they completely resemble and imitate humans might create a false sense of empathy or attachment in people, especially those suffering from loneliness. Furthermore, individuals may suffer from emotional manipulations, developing what they believe to be sincere emotional connection with machines which, as we know, are incapable of reciprocating human emotions. Such ambiguity might jeopardize authentic human connections by replacing genuine social interactions with artificial ones. All these mentioned trends throw personal growth and emotional development into question.

Is there really a need to design robots to possess human-like traits such as empathy, joy, respect, and dignity? There’s a risk that this anthropomorphism might divert attention from the actual role of machines, disregarding their limitations. According to some research, recent social trends that developed after Covid 19 have brought a definite portion of isolation into the life of mankind. So, the process of humanizing machines may further isolate individuals from authentic human connections.


In conclusion, while the concept of treating robots like people brings definite benefits for human-robot interaction, it also presents serious ethical issues. Although human-like interactions with robots may have advantages, particularly in domains like health therapy or caregiving, blurring the boundaries between humans and machines might result in emotional manipulations, affecting genuine human relations. Thus, finding a middle ground between acknowledging machines’ abilities and limitations while acknowledging ethical considerations regarding their treatment remains crucial in navigating our evolving interactions with technology.


Bhandari, G. (2020). Robotics Industry Market Report. Tech. Rep. Centennial, CO: Macrosource Media Pty Ltd.

Boyle, G. J., Saklofske, D. H., & Matthews, G. (2014). Measures of Personality and Social Psychological Constructs. Cambridge, MA: Academic Press.

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