• Part of
    Ubiquity Network logo
    Join mailing list Press Brochure

    Read Chapter
  • No readable formats available
  • The Language Labyrinth: Constructive Critique on the Terminology Used in the AI Discourse

    Rainer Rehak

    Chapter from the book: Verdegem, P. 2021. AI for Everyone?: Critical Perspectives.


    In the interdisciplinary field of artificial intelligence (AI) the problem of clear terminology is especially momentous. This paper claims, that AI debates are still characterised by a lack of critical distance to metaphors like ‘training’, ‘learning’ or ‘deciding’. As consequence, reflections regarding responsibility or potential use-cases are greatly distorted. Yet, if relevant decision-makers are convinced that AI can develop an ‘understanding’ or properly ‘interpret’ issues, its regular use for sensitive tasks like deciding about social benefits or judging court cases looms. The chapter argues its claim by analysing central notions of the AI debate and tries to contribute by proposing more fitting terminology and hereby enabling more fruitful debates. It is a conceptual work at the intersection of critical computer science and philosophy of language.

    Chapter Metrics:

    How to cite this chapter
    Rehak, R. 2021. The Language Labyrinth: Constructive Critique on the Terminology Used in the AI Discourse. In: Verdegem, P (ed.), AI for Everyone?. London: University of Westminster Press. DOI: https://doi.org/10.16997/book55.f

    This chapter distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution + Noncommercial + NoDerivatives 4.0 license. Copyright is retained by the author(s)

    Peer Review Information

    This book has been peer reviewed. See our Peer Review Policies for more information.

    Additional Information

    Published on Sept. 20, 2021