We Should Be Paid To Not Interact With the Internet

A letter submitted to the New York Times on 25 September 2019

Bill Hibbard

Jaron Lanier proposes that we should get paid for our data (23 Sept) which means we should get paid for interacting with the Internet. Sounds like a good way to spread tech wealth. However, consider a large AI system designed to control human society. To do that it needs to learn a predictive model of human society, and to do that it needs to interact with humans as much as possible. Paying us to interact is a great way to increase our interactions, especially for those who lose their jobs to AI. It may be better to pay us to not interact with the Internet. What we really need is for big tech to be completely transparent about how their AI systems work and what they're being used for.