We all know the robots are going to take over the world one day. But people are a bit unnerved that it’s happening so soon. Aren’t we meant to have a bit more time?
That’s because users of Amazon’s Alexa personal assistant have been reporting some creepy unprompted laughter from the device. When asked unrelated questions, or just on its own, it’s been giggling to itself in a rather malevolent way, surely heralding the end of times.
“Lying in bed about to fall asleep when Alexa on my Amazon Echo Dot lets out a very loud and creepy laugh… there’s a good chance I get murdered tonight,” one person wrote on Twitter.
Others reported Alexa laughing when responding to other requests. One even said it started listing off local cemeteries and funeral homes unprompted.
Another person on Reddit said that Alexa refused to turn their lights off and then suddenly started laughing. “I was trying to turn off some lights and they kept turning back on,” they wrote. “After the third request, Alexa stopped responding and instead did an evil laugh.”
There were plenty of other creepy stories on Reddit. One person said Alexa wished her mother-in-law goodnight, saying “Good night, Clarice.”
“My mother-in-law’s name isn’t Clarice,” they noted.
This has, understandably, unnerved quite a few people. Others simply decided to turn off the device. Probably a good idea. Might want to stock up on your robot bashing weapons too.
Fortunately, Amazon says there’s a reason this is happening, and it’s not the start of the robot uprising. They said the device was mishearing the phrase “Alexa, laugh.” So they’re changing the request to “Alexa, can you laugh?” which they say is “less likely to have false positives.”
“We are also changing Alexa’s response from simply laughter to ‘Sure, I can laugh,’ followed by laughter,” an Amazon spokesperson told The Verge.
Of course, we know the truth. Amazon has been compromised. The robots are already here. The world as you know it is coming to an end. Plan wisely.