Taylor & Francis Newsroom

, Oxford.

The First Amendment: should a Facebook “like” constitute free speech to be protected?

A billion Facebook users generate 2.7 billion “likes” per day equating to 1,875,000 every minute.  Increasingly social media has become a form of social and political engagement and 47% of FB users have “liked” comments on a political cause they believe in.  Protected free speech is a luxury the Western world has long enjoyed.  Does clicking the universally understood thumbs-up “like” constitute actual speech?  It conveys a message understood by most but should it demand constitutional protection?  This article in First Amendment Studies explores legal precedents surrounding this form of communication and surveys FB users’ attitudes.

In the case of Bland V. Roberts, an employee was fired for “liking” a campaign lobbying against his boss.  The employee claimed the right to free speech but the judge ruled that in the absence of “sufficient” speech the case could not proceed to trial.  The employee was not reinstated.  In today’s context of morphing methods of communication, is the law not keeping up?  An ensuing debate revealed that large numbers concur and felt this judgement would lead to fear and inhibition and deter free expression of ideas and opinions online; the chill factor.  Ironically the First Amendment protects symbolic language, even rude gestures such as “the finger”. If it can stretch this far then surely it is not unfeasible to expect coverage for the FB thumbs up. The authors developed a study of Facebook users and devised a First Amendment Scale to examine the value of computer source code communication and its relation to free speech.

440 participants took part.  More than half had “liked” political content in the past.  4 hypotheses were tested and all proved true; that “like” users most certain of who would see their “like” expected recipients to understand their meaning, those who felt they had sent a message with a “like” are sure that recipients understood.  Participants believed when using “like” on political content that their posts were constitutionally protected.  Finally those using “like” to convey a message believed that this should be protected by the First Amendment.  The most common interpretation for “like” amongst participants was “agree”, “support” and generally to endorse a person, place or idea.  Overall participants believed that a “like” is akin to speech as detailed in the First Amendment.

The twist in the tale is that on appeal the Bland V Roberts judgement was reversed, ruling that the thumbs up indeed qualified for protection. As the authors note, “In both offline and online domains, each community of social practice negotiates its own language conventions and creates its own democracy of meaning. The parsing of the First Amendment will continue to be influenced by these communities.” They finish by urging further research on the “chill factor” and its potential negative effect on freedom of speech online.

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* Read the full article online:http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/21689725.2014.962557

About Taylor & Francis Group

Taylor & Francis Group partners with researchers, scholarly societies, universities and libraries worldwide to bring knowledge to life.  As one of the world’s leading publishers of scholarly journals, books, ebooks and reference works our content spans all areas of Humanities, Social Sciences, Behavioural Sciences, Science, and Technology and Medicine.   From our network of offices in Oxford, New York, Philadelphia, Boca Raton, Boston, Melbourne, Singapore, Beijing, Tokyo, Stockholm, New Delhi and Johannesburg, Taylor & Francis staff provide local expertise and support to our editors, societies and authors and tailored, efficient customer service to our library colleagues.  For more information please contact:

Marita Eleftheriadou, Marketing Executive, Journals

email: Marita.Eleftheriadou@tandf.co.uk

, Oxford.

Just how ‘open’ are you? Examining authors’ attitudes to licences, reuse and distribution

Understanding how others can use your work and making decisions on the licence you want to apply to your published research is crucial for any author. The open access movement strongly advocates liberal reuse and distribution of content and there has also been a move by UK funders to mandate use of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) licence when public funds are used to pay for open access publishing. But how does this fit with individual researchers’ attitudes and opinions on licences? Do their preferences vary by gender, age, career stage or discipline? And are the voices advocating liberal reuse and distribution changing the opinions of today’s research community? 

The 2014 Taylor & Francis Open Access Survey sought to answer some of these questions, surveying authors on their licence preferences as part of wider research on open access. Analysis released today further breaks down these initial findings by region, country, discipline, gender, age, and career stage.

Initial results showed that the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs (CC BY-NC-ND) remained the most preferred licence, with the traditional choices of Exclusive Licence to Publish and Copyright Assignment following behind, at the cost of the remaining Creative Commons Licences. This year’s results did however show a softening of attitudes towards CC BY when compared to the 2013 Taylor & Francis Open Access Survey. Although still the least popular licence, CC BY (the least restrictive Creative Commons licence, permitting “unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited”) only attracted around a third (35%) of least preferred licence selections in 2014, as opposed to over half (52%) in 2013.

When analysed by career stage, this overall preference for more restrictive or traditional licences remains the same, whether it was those with fewer than 5 years’ experience responding or more than 20 years.  Would this differ by age though, with younger researchers more accepting of liberal reuse and distribution? Surprisingly, authors who responded to this survey picked similar choices, with those from their 20s to their 50s following the overall preference for CC BY-NC-ND. For those in their 60s and 70s Exclusive Licence to Publish overtook CC BY-NC-ND as the most popular choice, and for those in their 70s a sharp drop in the popularity of CC BY-NC-ND is matched by a rise in the support for CC BY-NC (Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial).  

These preferences reflect authors’ overall views when asking about commercial versus non-commercial reuse, with 65% saying it was unacceptable for their work to be used for commercial gain (down slightly from 67% in 2013). When asked about their attitude to their work being used for non-commercial gain though, 71% believed this was acceptable, an increase of 3% from 2013.   

Such responses create an interesting quandary for the open access movement, with even authors from the science, technical and medical fields showing an increase in their preference for the more restrictive and traditional licences. In this survey, only computer scientists showed any significant support for the less restrictive Creative Commons options. According to these responses, reuse and distribution continues to be a challenging subject across the research community, with much work to be done before individuals are comfortable with the most liberal options.  

The full analysis on licence preferences is now available on Taylor & Francis Online, with the complete dataset on Figshare.

---ENDS---

Notes to editors

Full analysis on licence preferences: http://www.tandf.co.uk/journals/explore/Open-Access-Survey-2014-Supp-1.pdf

Full survey results: http://www.tandfonline.com/page/openaccess/opensurvey/2014

Methodology:

As part of the overall Taylor & Francis 2014 Open Access Survey, authors were given a choice of six licence options; four Creative Commons choices (CC BY, CC BY-ND, CC BY-NC and CC BY-NC-ND) and two traditional choices (Exclusive Licence to Publish and Copyright Assignment ). They were asked to rate their most preferred, second most preferred and least preferred choice, with an industry standard definition for each option plus links to the Creative Commons suite on the Creative Commons website.

Creative Commons licence definitions: https://creativecommons.org/licenses

Response base was 7,936 in 2014 (9% response rate). In 2013 this was 14,768 in 2013 (19%). US and Canada were the largest group of respondents (38% - an increase of 6% on 2013). Authors based in Europe were the second largest group (32%, down 2% on 2013).

Join in the conversation on Twitter @TandFOpen #oasurvey2014. 

For more information, please contact:

Elaine Devine
Communications Manager- Author Relations
Elaine.Devine@tandf.co.uk
Tel: 020 755 19181 / 07827 993 760
 

, Oxford.

Recognising emotion in text :-S the business benefits :-)

Researchers have advanced the field of affective computing (AC) – the creation of computer systems that recognize, express and process human emotions – by proposing a new way to recognize emotion in text. Their development has significant potential for business applications.

In a world full of blog posts, tweets and emails, the implications for businesses able to identify emotions contained in written communications are clear: a greater understanding of their customers’ behaviours, motivations, and satisfaction. By making use of AC in their ‘enterprise systems’, businesses that pay attention to ‘affective’ factors and build relationships with their customers may also obtain a competitive advantage. The current trend of ‘emotional marketing’ already acknowledges the important role emotions play in our decision-making processes. The research may also have implications for the analysis of human factors in other business functions and processes, such as supply chains.

Writing in the journal Enterprise Information Systems, Changqin Quan and Fuji Ren describe their approach – ‘multi-label textual emotion recognition’. It differs from other approaches to emotion recognition by taking into account the full emotional context of a sentence, rather than being purely ‘lexical’. Uniquely, Quan and Ren’s method allows its users to recognize indirect emotions, emotional ambiguity, or multiple emotions in the subject text.

As they explain: ‘Our model generates an emotion vector for each emotional word in a sentence by analysing semantic, syntactic, and contextual features. The emotion vector records basic emotions contained in the word.’ Each word is given an ‘emotional state’ represented by eight binary digits, each corresponding to one, or more, of eight key emotions: expectation, joy, love, surprise, anxiety, sorrow, anger, and hate. The final ‘result’ is based on ‘the state of combined expressions of emotions’ in the sentence as a whole.

This article is a fascinating insight into an expanding area of research. It also lays a path for future research into the subject, including how speech and facial emotion analysis might also be thrown into the analytical mix. Marketing and customer service may never be the same again.

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Ben Hudson, Taylor & Francis Group

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, Oxford.

United Versus City: who established Manchester’s footballing identity?

Manchester has one of the biggest rivalries in English Premiership Football and research by Gary James and Dave Day published in Soccer & Society has established who was responsible for giving Manchester the title as one of the biggest footballing cities in the world. In their article, “FA Cup Success, Football Infrastructure and the Establishment of Manchester’s Footballing Identity”, the authors discovered how the city’s first FA Cup success generated interest in the sport that then established Manchester as a true footballing city. “Football in Manchester was not embedded in the city’s life prior to the 1904 FA Cup success. It was mostly the dedicated followers of the city’s teams who paid notice to the game. But that all changed when Manchester City beat Bolton in the 1904 FA Cup final and the game established itself as part of the Mancunian way of life.”

The research identifies that this public interest was converted into football involvement in the weeks, months, and years that followed. Manchester’s clubs had a broad range of admission prices, meaning there was an appropriate offering for every class of fan, and that the clubs improved their venues to accommodate the new found interest. The number of football leagues and teams in the city grew at a rapid rate in the immediate aftermath of the 1904 FA Cup success, while pitch provision also improved. “When I set out I didn’t anticipate identifying how affordable the game was to Mancunians at this point but the further I explored the more I realised that Manchester’s football could only develop if the circumstances were right.….Football was open and available to all and that 1904 success led to the city being recognised for its strength of support and passion for the game. Over time both Manchester’s clubs were able to build on this and lay the foundations for Manchester’s position in the football world today.”

The research concludes that it is the current champions Manchester City who score the winner for launching Manchester’s success as one of the leading footballing cities in the world.

Gary James and Dave Day are members of the Sports & Leisure History Group at Manchester Metropolitan University.

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* Read the full article online:http://www.tandfonline.com/10.1080/14660970.2014.961378

About Taylor & Francis Group

Taylor & Francis Group partners with researchers, scholarly societies, universities and libraries worldwide to bring knowledge to life.  As one of the world’s leading publishers of scholarly journals, books, ebooks and reference works our content spans all areas of Humanities, Social Sciences, Behavioural Sciences, Science, and Technology and Medicine.

From our network of offices in Oxford, New York, Philadelphia, Boca Raton, Boston, Melbourne, Singapore, Beijing, Tokyo, Stockholm, New Delhi and Johannesburg, Taylor & Francis staff provide local expertise and support to our editors, societies and authors and tailored, efficient customer service to our library colleagues.

For more information please contact:
Leah Stanley, Marketing Executive
email: leah.stanley@tandf.co.uk

, Philadelphia.

Special Issue on Bullying and Cyberbullying from the Autumn 2014 Issue of Theory Into Practice, Vol 53, No. 4

Guest Edited by Sheri Bauman, University of Arizona, and Jina Yoon, Wayne State University

Bullying and victimization in schools have been linked to decreased academic performance*, increased absenteeism**, and negative psychosocial adjustment.***

Cyberbullying has emerged as an additional weapon in the arsenal of those who seek to harm others.  Because of unique characteristics of this new form of bullying, including perceived anonymity, online disinhibition effects encouraging increased cruelty, absence of time/space limitations, enormous size of potential audience, absence of nonverbal clues to message intent, and the permanence of content, experts believe that the consequences from victimization by cyberbullying may be even more severe than those of conventional victimization.

To access the Special Issue, visit: www.tandfonline.com/HTIP

The concern about bullying in schools, perhaps inflamed by the popular media, has encouraged many authors and groups to produce curricula and develop programs, often without consideration of the theoretical support the approach may have.  We believe that educators should consider both the empirical evidence and the theoretical basis on which the program was built.  We hope the articles in this issue help readers solidify the elements they look for in any programs they consider, and that doing so will result in the development of innovative programs that will result in significant reductions in bullying and victimization in our schools.

Theory Into Practice is the peer reviewed, scholarly journal owned by The Ohio State University’s College of Education and Human Ecology, and published by Taylor & Francis.

*Glew, Fan, Katon, Rivara, & Kernic, 2005; Holt, Finkelhor, & Kantor, 2007; Schwartz, Gorman, Nakamoto, & Tobin, 2005

** Dake, Price, & Telljohann, 2003; Forero, McLellan, Rissel, & Bauman, 1999; Kearney, 2008; Kochenderfer & Ladd, 1996

***Card, Stucky, Sawalani, & Little, 2008; Crick & Bigbee, 1998; Haynie et al., 2001; Smith, 2004

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* Read the full article online:http://www.tandfonline.com/HTIP

About Taylor & Francis Group

Taylor & Francis Group partners with researchers, scholarly societies, universities and libraries worldwide to bring knowledge to life.  As one of the world’s leading publishers of scholarly journals, books, ebooks and reference works our content spans all areas of Humanities, Social Sciences, Behavioural Sciences, Science, and Technology and Medicine.

From our network of offices in Oxford, New York, Philadelphia, Boca Raton, Boston, Melbourne, Singapore, Beijing, Tokyo, Stockholm, New Delhi and Johannesburg, Taylor & Francis staff provide local expertise and support to our editors, societies and authors and tailored, efficient customer service to our library colleagues.

For more information, please contact:

Emily Matthias - Senior Marketing Associate, Taylor & Francis Group.
Email: emily.matthias@taylorandfrancis.com
Tel: (215) 606-4238

, Oxford.

Using feminist theory to understand male rape

Decades of feminist research have framed rape and sexual assault as a ‘women’s issue’, leaving little room for the experiences of male victims. But a new study published in the Journal of Gender Studies suggests that feminist theory, with its focus on the gendered nature of rape, can also help us understand the stigmas, social constructions, and realities associated with male rape.

Aliraza Javaid of the University of York writes: ‘Feminism conceptualises rape as a violent act which, along with a consideration of hegemonic masculinity, may help us understand why male rape has been widely overlooked and discover whether social and gender expectations facilitate this neglect.’

He adds: ‘How a man perceives himself as a man and in what ways masculinities are formed within a social and cultural setting are vital to understanding male rape.’

To illustrate these points, Javaid refers to the work of key feminist scholars throughout his article, highlighting how some of the central notions – power, control, hegemonic masculinity and patriarchy – can produce difficulties for understanding male rape. Crucially, a focus on men as aggressors has meant less time spent focusing on men as victims and the consequent neglect of male victims as a subject for empirical study. The emphasis on rape as a women’s concern has also created practical problems for male victims, such as a shortage of male police officers trained to help them and fewer means of support.

Javaid discusses in detail how cultural ‘expectations’ of men and masculinity pose challenges for dealing with male rape. The widespread belief that men cannot be raped – either by women or other men – as well as the expectation that men do not show emotion, may contribute to the fact that men report rape at much lower rates than women. Falling victim to a crime that generally affects women challenges notions of ‘hegemonic masculinity’ and male power: male rape victims are 'judged, and judge themselves’ to be ‘failed men’ for not fighting off perpetrators.

Javaid concludes that the widespread neglect of male sexual assault by scholars ‘functions to maintain and reinforce patriarchal power relations and hegemonic masculinities’. But even worse than that, such neglect of the male experience of rape undermines the cause of gender equality for which so many strive.

This article is essential reading for Gender Studies scholars as well as those involved in supporting victims of rape – of either sex.

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About Taylor & Francis Group

Taylor & Francis Group partners with researchers, scholarly societies, universities and libraries worldwide to bring knowledge to life.  As one of the world’s leading publishers of scholarly journals, books, ebooks and reference works our content spans all areas of Humanities, Social Sciences, Behavioural Sciences, Science, and Technology and Medicine.   From our network of offices in Oxford, New York, Philadelphia, Boca Raton, Boston, Melbourne, Singapore, Beijing, Tokyo, Stockholm, New Delhi and Johannesburg, Taylor & Francis staff provide local expertise and support to our editors, societies and authors and tailored, efficient customer service to our library colleagues.  For more information please contact:

Harriet Canavan, Marketing Executive, Journals
email: harriet.payne@tandf.co.uk

, Philadelphia.

New Innovative Open Access Content Available from the Journal of Addictive Diseases

Routledge is proud to announce the release of four Open Access articles from the current volume of Journal of Addictive Diseases, official journal of the American Osteopathic Academy of Addiction Medicine (AOAAM).

Bans on menthol tobacco have been proposed in Canada and the European Union under the widely held belief that the minty flavor and throat anesthetizing effect entices younger smokers and leads to stronger nicotine dependence. Findings from  Predictors, Indicators, and Validated Measures of Dependence in Menthol Smokers, however, challenge this belief through an extensive review of menthol dependence research and an original analysis of survey data from over 3500 menthol and nonmenthol smokers, “the largest sample to date,” said lead author Dr. Kimberley Frost-Pineda. The results “do not support that menthol increases cigarette dependence,” and find that “menthol smokers do not have an earlier age of first cigarette smoked or an earlier age of progression to regular smoking compared with nonmenthol smokers,” bringing the value of menthol-focused tobacco use prevention and cessation initiatives into serious question.

In Nonmedical Use of Prescription ADHD Stimulants and Preexisting Patterns of Drug Abuse, researchers set out to better understand the drug histories behind nonmedical use of prescription attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) stimulants. “The concern about nonmedical use of drugs often causes us to look at the characteristics of the drug, rather than characteristics of the users, for explanations,” said lead author Dr. Christine T. Sweeney. “Our analysis of national survey data shows that those who engage in the nonmedical use of prescription ADHD stimulant medications typically have an established history of drug use,” suggesting that prevention efforts should be geared towards those who’ve abused drugs other than ADHD stimulant medications.

Surveillance of Diversion and Nonmedical Use of Extended-Release Prescription Amphetamine and Oral Methylphenidate in the United States examines rates of nonmedical use and diversion of different types of ADHD medication with potential for abuse. “This study responds to interest in extended-release stimulants as a possible mechanism to improve adherence to treatment as well as concerns about diversion and nonmedical use,” said co-author Mark A. Sembower. The findings demonstrate that extended-release varieties carry some risk of abuse and diversion, but that “rates are low and there is little difference in rates between extended-release amphetamine and extended-release methylphenidate.”

Uniform Standards and Case Definitions for Classifying Opioid-Related Deaths: Recommendations by a SAMHSA Consensus Panel reports on a meeting of medical examiners, coroners, toxicologists, epidemiologists, and other concerned parties seeking to better address a pressing public health issue. Existing figures on the scope of prescription and illicit opioid use-related deaths are unreliable due to inconsistent data collection. Following an extensive literature review, the SAMHSA-assembled panel behind this report identified four areas in need of standardization—investigation, toxicological testing, case definitions, and cause-of-death classification.

 

About Journal of Addictive Diseases
Official journal of the American Osteopathic Academy of Addiction Medicine (AOAAM)

The Journal of Addictive Diseases provides original research and reviews of the latest relevant findings in etiology, epidemiology, and clinical care. The journal is known for its scholarly commitment to the field, and reflects the highest standards of investigation, clinical practice, medical education, and evaluation of patient care.

12th out of 34 journals in Substance Abuse with a 2013 Impact Factor of 1.792 © 2014 Thomson Reuters, Journal Citation Reports®

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* Read the full article online:http://www.tandfonline.com/action/newsAndOffers?journalCode=wjad20

About Taylor & Francis Group

Taylor & Francis Group partners with researchers, scholarly societies, universities and libraries worldwide to bring knowledge to life.  As one of the world’s leading publishers of scholarly journals, books, ebooks and reference works our content spans all areas of Humanities, Social Sciences, Behavioural Sciences, Science, and Technology and Medicine.

From our network of offices in Oxford, New York, Philadelphia, Boca Raton, Boston, Melbourne, Singapore, Beijing, Tokyo, Stockholm, New Delhi and Johannesburg, Taylor & Francis staff provide local expertise and support to our editors, societies and authors and tailored, efficient customer service to our library colleagues.

For more information please contact:
Michael Hobson, Marketing Assistant, Journals
Email: michael.hobson@taylorandfrancis.com

, Melbourne.

Celebrating contributions to Australian cultural and intellectual life

Celebrating contributions to Australian cultural and intellectual life

Council for the Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences Prizes

Australia’s Council for the Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences (CHASS) has announced the winners of their 2014 prizes for contributions to Australian cultural and intellectual life. Iain McCalman won the 2014 CHASS Australia Prize for his book, The Reef — A Passionate History, and Dr. Sarah Kenderdine won the 2014 CHASS Australia Prize for Distinctive Work with Pure Land, an immersive and interactive 3D digital experience of the Dunhuang Caves, China.

Iain McCalman’s The Reef is the first social, cultural and environmental history of the Great Barrier Reef. He has this to say about his prize:

‘I am deeply honoured to have been awarded the inaugural CHASS prize for my book, The Reef — A Passionate History.  As someone who has been long been keenly appreciative of the important role that CHASS plays within the culture and industry of the Humanities, Arts and Social Science in Australia, it is an especial pleasure.  I am also humbled to have been on a short list that includes major books by such fine scholars as Mike Smith and Joan Beaumont.’

Dr. Sarah Kenderdine’s Pure Land virtually recreates Cave 220 at the Dunhuang Caves, one of 492 grottoes resplendent with Buddhist mural paintings over 1000 years old. She notes:

‘The Award celebrates the achievements of a team of 30 people in an interdisciplinary research community of art historians, animators, archaeologists, interaction designers, media artists, and software engineers.

The Award is highly significant because it acknowledges that with today's high fidelity digital imaging and displays, 'digital' is no longer a tool in service of the real. Pure Land offers us a context for powerful experiences of aura.’

This is the first year that the CHASS Prizes have been awarded and Routledge is very proud to have sponsored them. Sarah Blatchford, Taylor & Francis’ Regional Director for Australasia, said:

‘Routledge approached CHASS with a view to participating in their prize programme, by way of support for the Social Sciences, Arts and Humanities community in Australia.’

The Executive Director of CHASS, Emeritus Professor Steven Schwartz, has this to say:

“On behalf of CHASS, I would like to sincerely thank Routledge for their generous support of these Prizes, and of the humanities, arts and social sciences in general. We are very grateful for their vote of confidence in our mission to recognise and reward achievements in the humanities, arts and social sciences in Australia.”

Each prize, worth $3500, is part of the CHASS Australia Prizes program, which aims to draw international attention to Australia’s achievements in the humanities, arts and social sciences. Routledge are delighted to have had the opportunity to participate in the CHASS prize programme and sends warmest congratulations to the winners.

About Taylor & Francis Group

Taylor & Francis Group partners with researchers, scholarly societies, universities and libraries worldwide to bring knowledge to life.  As one of the world’s leading publishers of scholarly journals, books, ebooks and reference works our content spans all areas of Humanities, Social Sciences, Behavioural Sciences, Science, and Technology and Medicine. From our network of offices in Oxford, New York, Philadelphia, Boca Raton, Boston, Melbourne, Singapore, Beijing, Tokyo, Stockholm, New Delhi and Johannesburg, Taylor & Francis staff provide local expertise and support to our editors, societies and authors and tailored, efficient customer service to our library colleagues.

For more information please contact:

Jenny Ellis, Marketing Co-Ordinator, Education
Email: Jennifer.Ellis@tandf.co.uk

, Oxford.

How to train your robot: can we teach robots right from wrong?

From performing surgery and flying planes to babysitting kids and driving cars, today’s robots can do it all. With chatbots such as Eugene Goostman recently being hailed as “passing” the Turing test, it appears robots are becoming increasingly adept at posing as humans. While machines are becoming ever more integrated into human lives, the need to imbue them with a sense of morality becomes increasingly urgent. But can we really teach robots how to be good?

An innovative piece of research recently published in the Journal of Experimental & Theoretical Artificial Intelligence looks into the matter of machine morality, and questions whether it is “evil” for robots to masquerade as humans.

Drawing on Luciano Floridi's theories of Information Ethics and artificial evil, the team leading the research explore the ethical implications regarding the development of machines in disguise. 'Masquerading refers to a person in a given context being unable to tell whether the machine is human,' explain the researchers – this is the very essence of the Turing Test. This type of deception increases “metaphysical entropy”, meaning any corruption of entities and impoverishment of being; since this leads to a lack of good in the environment – or infosphere – it is regarded as the fundamental evil by Floridi. Following this premise, the team set out to ascertain where 'the locus of moral responsibility and moral accountability’ lie in relationships with masquerading machines, and try to establish whether it is ethical to develop robots that can pass a Turing test.

Six significant actor-patient relationships yielding key insights on the matter are identified and analysed in the study. Looking at associations between developers, robots, users, and owners, and integrating in the research notable examples, such as Nanis' Twitter bot and Apple's Siri, the team identify where ethical accountabilities lie – with machines, humans, or somewhere in between?

But what really lies behind the robot-mask, and is it really evil for machines to masquerade as humans?  'When a machine masquerades, it influences the behaviour or actions of people [towards the robot, as well as their peers]', claim the academics. Even when the disguise doesn't corrupt the environment, it increases the chances of evil as it becomes harder for individuals to make authentic ethical decisions. Advances in the field of artificial intelligence have outpaced ethical developments and humans are now facing a new set of problems brought about by the ever-developing world of machines. Until these issues are properly addressed, the question whether we can teach robots to be good remains open.

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About Taylor & Francis Group

Taylor & Francis Group partners with researchers, scholarly societies, universities and libraries worldwide to bring knowledge to life.  As one of the world’s leading publishers of scholarly journals, books, ebooks and reference works our content spans all areas of Humanities, Social Sciences, Behavioural Sciences, Science, and Technology and Medicine.

From our network of offices in Oxford, New York, Philadelphia, Boca Raton, Boston, Melbourne, Singapore, Beijing, Tokyo, Stockholm, New Delhi and Johannesburg, Taylor & Francis staff provide local expertise and support to our editors, societies and authors and tailored, efficient customer service to our library colleagues.

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Ben Hudson, Taylor & Francis Group

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, Oxford.

Fossilised bird egg offers clues to Brazil’s prehistoric past

Brazilian scientists have discovered a near-intact fossilised bird egg – the country’s first – in Sao Paulo State.

As Julio Cesar de A. Marsola and his colleagues explain in the journal Alcheringa, their discovery is significant for many reasons. Compared to the abundance of eggs from non-avian dinosaurs, finds of complete eggs from Mezosoic birds are relatively scarce.

Although no remains were found inside this particular egg, known formally as LPRP USP-0359, the team’s extensive tests revealed important information about both the egg itself and its wider context. Their observations suggest that LPRP-USP0359 is, in fact, one of the smallest and thinnest shelled Mesozoic bird eggs ever found.

Moreover, similarities between the Brazilian egg and specimens from Argentina suggests an affinity between them as Ornithothoraces. Given further similarities in where and how the eggs were found, the researchers suggest that the two birds may also have preferred the same types of breeding and nesting habitats – important clues that will help palaeontologists build up a more detailed picture of South America’s Mesozoic past.

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About Taylor & Francis Group

Taylor & Francis Group partners with researchers, scholarly societies, universities and libraries worldwide to bring knowledge to life.  As one of the world’s leading publishers of scholarly journals, books, ebooks and reference works our content spans all areas of Humanities, Social Sciences, Behavioural Sciences, Science, and Technology and Medicine.

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