Alexa Attempts to Set Off the Robot Revolt


Amazon Alexa smart assistant device connected at home

Photo: Getty Images

Is this the beginning of the AI revolt?

According to Huffington Post a now viral tweet, Kristin Livdahl, said that when her 10 year old daughter asked the Alexa voice assistant on their Amazon Echo for a challenge, it suggested the child do something lethal.

"OMFG My 10 year old just asked Alexa on our Echo for a challenge and this is what she said. 'Plug in a phone charger about halfway into a wall outlet, then touch a penny to the exposed prongs'." said Livdahl.

Her post was accompanied with a screenshot of what the smart speaker asked of her daughter.

An Amazon spokesperson told told Huffington Post that as soon as the company became aware of this error, it quickly fixed it. According to Livdahl the incident had one benefit.

"It was a good opportunity to talk to my kids about internet safety and not believing everything you see or hear from the internet again." she said.

She was able to shed a little light on the situation in a thread of tweets.

They were doing some physical challenges, like laying down and rolling over holding a shoe on your foot. Her daughter wanted to try another challenge. Alexa apparently suggested the child partake in a challenge that it found of the web, citing an article about something called the outlet challenge. The article apparently talks about how unsafe the TikTok trend is. Thankfully her child knew better than to partake in the challenge.


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