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  • Writer's pictureMelodi Eniola

The Creator: Can AI really harm us?

The Creator (2023) is a dystopian sci-fi film directed by Gareth Edwards that explores the aftermath of a nuclear accident caused by AI, which is now integrated into society. It follows the main character Joshua Taylors (John David Washington), an army veteran harbouring a secret weapon, and an AI child named Alphie (Madeline Yuna Voyles) while searching for his presumably dead wife, Maya (Gemma Chan).


The Creator is set in a bleak dystopian world. Although it has its own flaws, it highlights many issues surrounding technology and AI. In the story, a nuclear accident in LA caused by AI incinerates over one million people. As a result, Joshua loses both his parents, his brother, and an arm and leg in the accident. This causes the US to ban AI and criticise New Asia which continues to develop their AI robots. The important question is, does AI really have the potential to cause an accident on such a large scale? Realistically, no, AI may not have the power to do this, but there are still alarming risks associated with the technology.


One major risk of AI is lack of privacy. Companies already collect our data to create tailored adverts or for market research, but the use of AI raises concerns that this will increase even more. For example, 72.6% of IOS apps track private user data.


Another large risk is AI bias. There exist two types of bias: data and societal bias. Societal bias is when society’s bias becomes intertwined with an AI algorithm. An example of this is the Tiktok algorithm. The algorithm is said to use facial recognition to score how ‘beautiful’ you are on a scale for one to five, causing the user to gain popularity and appear on more screens. However, the AI is 10-100 times more likely to misidentify Black and Asian users, than Caucasian.


However, the most dystopian risk is the ethical issues surrounding AI. It is theorised that the development of AI could cause potentially catastrophic consequences. This could be due to AI not having morals that align with human values, as someone may create AI or technology with the intent to cause harm. This can be seen in The Creator, where the US claims to reject AI, but the armed forces use NOMAD, a space station, to repeatedly bomb villages in New Asia. This is not too far-fetched from reality, as military institutions have found less dystopian uses for AI, such as reviewing drone and satellite footage to better see the battlefield, enabling officials to make more efficient and effective decisions. Moreover, drones in Ukraine have been equipped with weapons that can enter the battlefield, find and attack targets without any human involvement. This raises concerns about the extent of force used in war and the lack of human control. In non-military contexts, AI in the banking industry is more likely to discriminate against minorities, as lending data has in the past.


The Creator shows the audience the fantasy of an AI integrated world, despite the clear warning. While AI has revolutionised certain industries and has the potential to aid many worthy causes, there is still a looming threat of the dangers of AI that cannot be ignored. AI will always be used and developed, but we as a society must ensure that the regulations around this technology are as tight as possible.


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