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Airbnb Has AI Psychiatrist Looking At Your Facebook

Airbnb reportedly uses artificial intelligence software to look through your social media posts, looking for evidence of traits like narcissism, Machiavellianism, or psychopathy.

Airbnb owns the rights to software that's designed to scan people's online presence to predict whether they're trustworthy, according to a patent filed last year. The software digs through people's internet posts, including social media activity, to detect illegal activity and scan for traits including "neuroticism," "narcissism, Machiavellianism, or psychopathy."

The short-term rental app has attempted to ensure the safety of guests and hosts in the wake of several high-profile crises in the past year. The company banned parties in its listings after five people were killed in an October shooting at an Airbnb in California, and other hosts have accused guests of incurring millions of dollars in damage.

Science fiction writers had some early thoughts about how computer systems could be used to evaluate people psychologically. For example, Philip K. Dick wrote this in his 1953 story Colony:

The robot psyche tester whirred, integrating and gestalting. At last its color code lights changed from red to green.

"Well?" Hall demanded.

"Severe disturbance. Instability ratio up above ten."

"That's over danger?"

"Yes. Eight is danger. Ten is unusual, especially for a person with your index. You usually show about a four... If you could give me more data-"

Hall set his jaw. "I can't tell you any more."
(Read more about Philip K Dick's robot psyche tester)

You might also be interested in the Machine Psychologist from James Blish's 1957 Cities in Flight novels. And don't forget, the machines are always listening.

Via BI; thanks to Palmer Eldritch for the tip on this story.

Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 1/3/2020)

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