Pope Francis : AI must serve humans, not dominate them | | | | Turtles AI

Pope Francis : AI must serve humans, not dominate them



On the occasion of the 58th World Communications Day, the Vatican released Pope Francis’ traditional message urging the centrality of human beings over machines, stressing the importance of journalism and the danger of fake news.

Pope Francis, with the force of his arguments, continues to sweep away the image of a conservative Church anchored in tradition.

The magisterium of the Argentine pontiff is always turned to the present, with the intention of understanding rather than judging, even when he addresses issues of close relevance.

In this year’s message, released on the anniversary of St. Francis de Sales, patron saint of journalists, the pope focused on AI, describing it as an innovation that is radically transforming information and communication, with significant implications for civil coexistence.

Francis highlights how AI generates a mixture of excitement and disorientation, inevitably leading to fundamental questions about human beings and the future of the species in the age of intelligent machines.

The Pope insists on the need to keep the human being and his relationship with God, with his fellow human beings and now with intelligent machines at the center of reflection.

He urges the avoidance of catastrophic readings that paralyze, quoting Romano Guardini, who cautioned against stiffening toward the new in a vain attempt to preserve a past destined to disappear.

Pope Francis stresses that although machines can store and correlate data far more efficiently than humans, it is still up to humans to decode their meaning.

He also calls for awakening from the delusion of omnipotence and remembering one’s own creaturality.

According to Francis, every tool in human hands can become opportunity or danger.

AI can liberate from ignorance and facilitate the exchange of information, but also cause cognitive pollution through disinformation and deepfakes.

Pope Francis recalls a personal episode in which he was the victim of a false image spread online.

Francis concludes by saying that the future of AI depends on human choices: whether it will be an instrument of new slavery or liberation, whether it will condition everyone’s thinking or promote collective participation in thought processing.

The answer, he says, is up to humans, who must decide whether to become slaves to algorithms or nourish their hearts with freedom to grow in wisdom.