Re: immortality

From: Emlyn (
Date: Tue Dec 12 2000 - 02:34:32 MST

> If the androidization is voluntary, then the android you is, or should be,
> contractually satisfied with his physiological enhancement, but the the
> existence of the chimpish you creates an unexpected and undesired dilution
> of identity rights. The new you and the old you are equally desirous of
> being the real you, but the old you has precedence. The new you has been
> deprived of the exclusive possession of the "you" persona, to which
> exclusive possession he had had a reasonable expectation going into the
> procedure, ie when he WAS you. Now the old you is still the real you and
> the new you is a 'mere' enhanced copy. Bad break.
> >Which entity is "you"? Any of them? All of them? Some of them?
> What I became aware of in this little exercise was that the issue of "Who
> is you?" seems to separate in a rights issue and an identity issue, with
> (if you don't rigorously segregate the two) the latter subordinate to the
> former.
> First you 'own' the rights to your identity and to choose whatever that
> will be. In the absence of personally-asserted first-person identity
> rights, third-party-assessed identity authenticity is materially-based,
> a matter of degree. Originality defines the highest degree of
> authenticity, the original you in the original body, sliding gradually
> through amnesiac, comatose, brain-wiped, deanimate frozen, deanimate
> decayed, the various permutations of copies, to urn of ashes and fading
> photograph, and finally to a last fleeting wisp of memory.
> Thanks, Harvey. That was fun.
> Best, Jeff Davis

Jeff, I don't agree...

The rights issue must be subordinate to the identity issue. Externally, the
rights issue will be what matters (who, after all, owns all your stuff?),
but subjectively, to you, the question of identity is paramount, and is most
likely obvious; you are you, and that's that.

I think in this case, the android is closest to you. However, with the
erasure+reinstatement, this must be a new instance of you. I think the
original died, with the amnesia. Whether the procedure was voluntary or not
changes nothing. If you go through a copy upload scenario, which involves
scanning you, running a new version in another substrate, and then banging
the original on the head with a hammer (messy cleanup to avoid messy
identity or at least rights issues), then that upload is not the same
subjective you, irrespective of whether you participated voluntarily or not.


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