The emergence of Artificial intelligence (AI) technologies in human society triggers depictions of AI technologies—not only debated in hard news—but also in fictional and imagined worlds, especially the sci-fi blockbusters. These blockbusters—attracting audiences globally with fancy visual effects and popular (sometimes formulative) storytelling strategies—enable the representation of cyborgs (human-like robots) in people’s lives and shape the audience’s perception of human-machine communication. The blockbusters have been criticized as notoriously misrepresenting the role of cyborgs in human society.
This project includes three parts: (1) computational analysis of the citation-networks among the movies based on digital movie achieve data; (2) a focus-group interview on the young adults as sci-fi movie audiences; and (3) a scoping review of cyborgs featured in communication journal articles. With this mixed-methods design, the current project triangulates how these sci-fi blockbusters portray cyborgs and how such portrayals are reflected in people’s way of life and scholarly research in media and communication. It advances our understanding of society’s perceptions and beliefs towards these cyborgs in particular and ethical AI and human-machine communication in general.