Sex robots are far more ethical and accessible than prostitution (of course it would have to be some years from now most likely).
As a technologist I feel obligated to point out that this is far more accessible than most people realize. When people think of sex robots they imagine blowup dolls and the evolution of that. There’s certainly sex androids and progress is being made in that avenue, however it is still probably like fucking a dead body for most people. The uncanny valley is too large.
However, if you mix VR with deep fakes and advanced dildonics you could create a very realistic and satisfying experience with current technology. Just sayin’…
The world we live in isn’t just dystopic, it isn’t just stupid, trying to describe all the ways it sucks just makes for a really boring story.
Masturbation is generally a lot more accessible than a sex robot or a prostitute. One who chooses to hire a prostitute rather than masturbating does it for their own specific reasons. The question then is: does a sex robot provide enough of the desired qualities that are lacking from self-masturbation but obtainable from prostitutes? I suspect that for a large majority of those that pay for prostitutes the answer is no. I can’t speak from personal experience because I am not interested in paying for sex with either a robot or a prostitute, but I suspect that many of those who like to be with prostitutes do so largely because of the human-to-human connection and interaction and not only the mechanical experience.
Human contact can be simulated. Texture, temperature, virtually indistinguishable… Unless you look at it. That’s where the VR + deepfake comes in.
Does a person pay for a prostitute because of the physical experience or because of other psychological factors? It is my understanding that it is often because of psychological needs. For example: some men that pay for sex do so because of the power dynamic, they are aroused by having control over a woman’s body because they have a need for what he can give them (money), and they may even get off putting them in uncomfortable situations. Other men pay for sex because they are unable to find a relationship, and prostitutes help fill the emotional gap. I don’t think that robots are going to be able to satisfy the needs of these specific kinds of men who pay for sex, and many other cases.
I think that sex robots will have their own separate market, drawing in many customers who do not pay to have sex with sex workers. For example, couples with sexual needs that are not met but that are unwilling to have sex with people outside of their relationship may be more willing to try things out with robots. Or people who simply like the robotic experience but are not interested in paying for sex with another human.
Certainly true but I’m sure there’s plenty of overlap.
Also synthetic sex allows you to truly own the experience, whereas if you are visiting a prostitute, especially when it is illegal and done on the street, it’s hard to escape the reality that you are just one customer of many, and you aren’t even really making a choice of the prostitute you desire the most, just whichever one happens to be available and you can get away with it.
Legalized prostitution on the other hand is a bit more catered experience.
I tend to be very “conservative” when making predictions about the future, probably because saying ‘the effect will end up being small’ is generally a likely and safe bet. But in this case it could really be that there is a massive shift - pornography did end up having a very big impact, after all, and it does not involve real human-to-human contact. Since I am not much of a consumer in this market, I don’t really have the mindset to predict what customers will like. I am quite curious about what ends up happening, though. I still suspect that synthetic sex will be an ‘additional’ experience and won’t replace many prostitutes.