Ebuyer research reveals extent of public concerns surrounding AI

Fin is a former junior editor at TechForge.

Ebuyer has found from mass data collection that more than 2.9 million negative conversations surrounding artificial intelligence (AI) were sparked online in the past year.

Using data from Google Search Trends, Linkfluence, and Answer the Public, the tech retailer has broken down public sentiment on AI based on region, age, and other factors.

The biggest search queries included “can artificial intelligence be dangerous?” and “will artificial intelligence take over the world?”

The US held the largest interest in AI with more than 12 million posts discussing the technology. The most mentioned topics were natural language processing with 130,000 conversations and machine learning with 127,000 conversations.

US politics and AI were also a big topic of conversation with Donald Trump spiking 230,000 of the country’s conversations.

India and the UK followed in second and third with 2.36 million and 1.27 million conversations generated respectively. However, whilst the US population held a majority negative sentiment towards AI, both India and UK were mostly positive regarding its uses.

In terms of generational differences in opinion on AI, Ebuyer were unsurprised to find that generation Z were the group talking about AI the most this past year. 18-24 year-olds made up 30% of conversations on the topic, with baby boomers coming in a close second as 20% of discussion came from 55-64 year-olds.

Female generation Z talked about AI the most, making up 17% of all conversations, and were mostly positive.

Meanwhile, millennials and baby boomers were the most negative towards AI. Over the past year, millennials generated 25% of negative posts in comparison to 12% of positive ones, whilst baby boomers had a ratio of 27% positive to 9% negative.

These generational trends seem unsurprising for gen Z, as the generation that grew up with technology, and for baby boomers, who seem more naturally opposed to new tech. However, the dominance of millennials negativity towards AI stands out as Ebuyer’s most unexpected finding.

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