Should there be an ethical obligation to disclose you are talking to a machine?

Seems my interactions with Seller Support are handled by an automated system for the first 5 to 10 back-and-forths. Once I get to the point where the “escalate” button appears, It’s clear the replies are bespoke to my situation. (the person is equally unable to help, but that’s almost a given)

Anyway, should there be some signal that we are talking to a machine?

I know Amazon has pretty low ethics standards, so it’s unlikely to happen.


Welcome to SAS!

I think there should be, but I also always assume with Amazon I am.

Before AI was a cool term Amazon just had “bots”. Call em AI or bots, they are both dumb as a box of rocks!


I often post “bots or the human prototype for a bot”.

Does it matter whether they make a disclosure, I think not.

I had a failing TV box on Xfinity. Every time I called or chatted, they wanted me to spend 15-20 minutes testing and rebooting the bot. I made service appointments which were missed, and when I called I was told they had no record of the appointment, and wanted me to go through the same troubleshooting process.

Finally, I reached a rep in the Philippines who started this process. When I objected, she left the script and told me this was all bulls***, and spent 20 minutes making their system actually schedule the appointment.

This is what professional managers design for customer service systems, and they have for years.

When I had my own computer company, one of the manufacturers we dealt with had such a system. But we had an assigned rep at the factory who we could refer our customers to (if I was not in the mood to help them myself) who had the skills to listen and deal with their problems. Just the opposite of these script readers.

Bing has been sending me, unsolicited, its AI generated versions of my search results to evaluate. So far my evaluation of their results have been “irrelevant” or “incorrect” When I did my searches I found the incorrect results and discounted them because they differed from the sites which had definitive information.

That definitive information goes to the heart of the AI problem. The algorithms which exist in Google’s Gemini which attempt to perform this function were so flawed they caused the recent embarrassment and stock price drop. Though that fiasco was political, the issue is far broader. Much of what is available on the internet is written by idiots and ignoramuses.


:point_up_2: :point_up_2: :point_up_2:


But the internet only exists as a useful tool for people who have a life due to the long hours and hard work of people who have no life, so one cannot expect consistent excellence from the internet.


A local store had a sandwich sign in front of the store,

Life is short …
Therefore you should spend 15 hours per day seeking validation from strangers on the internet.


Yes. To me, this is obvious. It’s about transparency and trustworthiness.

To Amazon, however… :expressionless:


Wouldn’t be shocked if there is litigation on this someday…matter of fact, I wouldn’t be shocked if Ebay/Amazon already have clauses in their user terms addressing this very possibility.

Interesting times we are living in, isn’t it?