An international crowdsourcing study into people's statements on fully automated driving

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Fully automated driving can potentially provide enormous benefits to society. However, it has been unclear whether people will appreciate such far-reaching technology. This study investigated anonymous textual comments regarding fully automated driving, based on data extracted from three online surveys with 8,862 respondents from 112 countries. Initial filtering of comments with fewer than 15 characters resulted in 1,952 comments. The sample consisted primarily of males (74%) and had a mean age of 32.6 years. Next, we launched a crowdsourcing job and asked 69 workers to assign each of the 1,952 comments to at least one of 12 predefined categories, which included positive and negative attitude to automated driving, enjoyment in manual driving, concerns about trust, reliability of software, and readiness of road infrastructure. 46% of the comments were classified into the category ‘no meaningful information about automated driving’, leaving 792 comments for further analysis. 39% of the comments were classified as ‘positive attitude towards automated driving’ and 23% were classified as ‘negative attitude towards automated driving’. In conclusion, the public opinion appears to be split, with a substantial number of respondents being positive and a significant number of respondents being negative towards fully automated driving.