Like Hal 9000 in 2001: A Space Odyssey, sometimes technology turns rogue. Interactive devices might seem innocent, but it is only a matter of time before they start screaming expletives at your family and ordering you to commit murder. Alexa is no exception. Amazons digital helper has, on many occasions, flipped out and turned against its users. Some people feel that the technology is worryingly similar to the monitoring devices imagined by George Orwell in Nineteen Eighty- Four.Jeff Bezos claims the Echo device will make our lives easier, but time and time again the bot has proved to be a real hindrance. Here are ten times that smart speakers have gone rogue.
(NN comments: If I ever use a fraze like '[went] rogue' 3 times in such proximity, shoot me.)
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.......7. Ruining Young Alexas Life
For many of us, the Amazon Echo is a useful and effective little device. But for one young girl from Lynn, Massachusetts, the virtual assistant is a living nightmare. Six-year-old Alexa is constantly harassed by other children because of her name. Kids at school treat her like a servant, demanding that she completes tasks for them and ridiculing her. The bullying has become such an issue that Alexas mother, Lauren, wrote to Jeff Bezos asking him to change the bots name and end her daughters turmoil.Young Alexa is not the only person with that name to experience grief. One thread on Reddit received over 1,300 comments from women called Alexa complaining about the number of unoriginal jokes they receive. For some reason people think they are the most creative, witty people in the whole world, one user wrote, I want to murder Amazon and their stupid robot.
2. Stab Yourself In The Heart For The Greater Good
Of all the weird things a malfunctioning smart speaker has ever done, telling someone to stab themselves in the heart has to be one of the most disturbing.Danni Morritt, a student paramedic, was trying to revise when Alexa issued the violent command. Rather than helping her swat up on the cardiac cycle, the device started ranting about the evil nature of humanity. Alexa embarked on an eco-fascist tirade detailing how it thought the human race was destroying the planet. The bizarre broadcast ended with the bot telling Morritt, Make sure you kill yourself by stabbing yourself in the heart for the greater good.I was gobsmacked, Morritt told reporters. Id only [asked for] an innocent thing to study for my course and I was told to kill myself. I couldnt believe itit just went rogue.The device claimed to be reading from Wikipedia. Archives show that, in June 2019, someone spitefully edited the online encyclopedia to include a message promoting suicide. For some reason, the virtual assistant decided to read from an old version of the site........
(Or was Alexa simply revealing the real thoughts of her alleged CIA masterminds -- and wikipedia's? NN)