Gigaom brings you our unique analysis and commentary on the present and future of AI.
In the end, most people are trustworthy. How do we know that? We know it because credit card fraud, the rate of it is very low. I mean, listen, most of us could commit some amount of credit card fraud and get away with it. You'd simply say you never received a package, or you did receive a package but it was full of bricks. I mean, I think of my credit card company that gives me two percent cash back on my purchases, and I know that they're only charging vendors two and a quarter or two and a half percent for the transaction, so their margins are razor thin on that transaction. Now, of course, they bear some of the brunt of fraud, but most of it is pushed back on the vendor, and yet most vendors are still willing to take credit cards. Even though the vendor realizes that an end user who disputes the transaction almost always wins. But to a vendor this turns out to be such a small amount in the grand scheme of things that it's a cost of doing business and they're willing to bear it for the convenience to everyone else.
I take great comfort in this because with artificial intelligence there is a general worry about how people are going to use it, and that bad acting individuals are going to overwhelm those who use the technology for good. But I think we can look at credit cards and online commerce and the amount of reciprocal trust that exists there, and realize that most people want to apply technology for good ends.