How Artificial Intelligence is Actually Producing More Humanity
The pandemic revealed the power of remote chat to connect us profoundly.
At the outset of Covid, ‘virtual’ had long played second fiddle to real life. How could artificial, digital delivery possibly compete with human-to-human interaction? It is relegated to the fringes when time or money is short, or when human-to-human interaction isn’t an option. But this necessity obfuscates an important truth about digital chat: that it can significantly outperform human chat.
The real world demands that you put on trousers before you show up. Messaging & video don’t demand this. Even social media asks you to clothe yourself in filters, fakery, and hashtag finery. But the trouser-less, un-coiffed spaces of digital chat soothe us into being fully ourselves. We all know that relationships are cemented when we’re at our most vulnerable. We are literally & metaphorically half-naked in messaging, so what better time to really get to know someone?
Let’s not confuse this with social media either. In chat, we don’t see the preening, posturing peacocks of social media. Without these socially erected barricades, humans can connect at an emotional level.
Many agree the past few years have been a time for pause, reflection, and introspection. But I would argue that we had been training for that already as we eschewed public displays of perfection of social media for the private confessional of chat messaging. In private we have the ability to ponder. Pondering isn’t an easy activity under a public glare, so both social media and public conversations struggle to inspire it, while in messaging it thrives.
The irony is that the digital technologies that we used to connect with one another was responsible for getting us right back to one of our most elemental states: self-reflection.
Chat technology allows us to project forward, and more profoundly. People have permission to relax, play, project, feel, imagine and intuit better than they can in real life where social pressures still thwart us. In the last few years, as this truth has revealed itself to me, I’ve seen an outpouring of humanity emerge as our technology gives it permission to. We may be using man-made tools, but they are removing social barriers that inhibit us from getting to know people.
Our platform has enlisted the help of another misunderstood technology: the chatbot. This has similarly suffered from an exaggeration of talents, followed by disappointment and relegation. In my world, a chatbot is quite simply the most attentive, patient, non-judgmental interviewer we could employ. It patiently questions, listen, follows up, and encourages the interviewee to take center stage.
By combining the most permissive environment (your own living room or bedroom), with an encouraging and dynamic interviewer, we have enabled a deeper level of understanding.