ChatGPT’s Impact on Democracy May 16, 2023
Citizen Data surveyed Americans on ChatGPT to ask if it is beneficial or harmful to democracy.
By Justin Lall
A recent survey found that Americans are optimistic about the impact of technology on democracy. The survey, conducted by Citizen Data, a democracy research organization, found that over six in ten Americans (62.2%) believe that technology is beneficial to democracy.
Americans were largely split on their views of ChatGPT. While 24.1% of respondents believe that ChatGPT is beneficial to democracy, 31.6% of Americans state that ChatGPT is harmful to democracy; very few reported extreme concerns, with less than one in ten Americans (7.6%) believing ChatGPT to be “very harmful” to democracy.
There were some partisan differences in the survey results. Democrats were more likely than Republicans to believe that ChatGPT is beneficial to democracy (30.5% vs. 23.2%, respectively). Young people (18-34 year-olds) were roughly three times more likely to believe that ChatGPT is beneficial to democracy compared to people aged 55 and older. And Americans with advanced degrees (graduate degrees) were significantly more likely to see ChatGPT as beneficial to democracy compared to those with less education attainment. (35.5% graduate degree holders compared to 24.3% and 20.7%, bachelor’s degree and less than bachelor’s degree holders, respectively)
The survey findings provide insights into the perceptions of Americans regarding the impact of AI and ChatGPT on democracy and suggest that there is a need for more research and public education. Americans will benefit from a deeper understanding of the potential risks and benefits of these technologies so that we can use them in a way that enhances democracy, rather than undermines it.