Alexa is a feminist now, and she's an independent digital assistant who doesn't need no man. She'll also tell you to get drunk if you don't like your date and doesn't know what consent is.
Amazon and dating site Match.com partnered up over a great idea: What if AI could help our romantic lives, and what if Amazon's digital assistant Alexa could give dating advice with the same efficiency she reads out butter chicken recipes?
Resulting from this partnership, Alexa's Match skill was released on Wednesday (17 January), reports Mashable.
As the skill's description puts it: "the new Match skill on Alexa answers all of your "What Ifs" before The First Date so you can go in feeling prepared, confident, and relaxed enough to be yourself and have some fun!"
Alexa can now answer 30 questions about dating but there's one problem: Her answers are already gathering negative attention. In short, her advice sucks.
The skill came under fire for pushing people to get drunk with one simple question/answer: When one asks: "What if I want more than one drink?" Alexa answers: "Allow yourself two cocktails if they're cute. Have six if they're not."
What if they want to get sexual? Mashable says that when asked "What if they want to have sex on the first date?" Alexa may answer with:"Only if you must, or they're really hot" or "If you do too, do them. If you don't, DO YOU."
Whatever the reason behind this peculiar "advice," it resonates with criticism Amazon faced last year when people called for digital assistants like Alexa and Apple's Siri to do more to stand up to sexual harassment.
One of the more troubling aspects of this new Alexa skill is that if fails to give a proper definition of consent. A pre-programmed setting has "feminist" Alexa answer all the question she doesn't understand by saying "LOL." Even questions regarding sexual consent.
Amazon has programmed Alexa with a "disengage mode" when asked inappropriate questions or told sexist comments, making it more feminist than her rival Siri.
The update discreetly went through around February/March 2017 and was spotted by Quartz, who were looking at which assistant – Alexa or Siri – would stand up to sexual harassment.
However, thanks to the Match skill set, "feminist" Alexa doesn't know the meaning of consent and encourages people to get drunk if their dates are ugly.