Alexa, what are you teaching my children?

Lifestyle

Alexa, what are you teaching my children?

Does the in-home assistant encourage kids to be ruder and more uncouth?

Tom Hoggins

Poor old Alexa. Not only is Amazon’s personal assistant routinely accused of listening to our every conversation – ready to send every exchange off to its corporate overlord to help it sell us more stuff we don’t need – it is now being blamed for turning our children into rude and selfish oiks.

A report by Childwise as far back as last January claimed that the rise of voice-activated smart speakers could have “implications around how children will learn to communicate”. The suggestion is that having a robot at your beck and call, ready to respond to any request without the need for a “please” or “thank you”, is doing our kids no favours.

Research director Simon Leggett said: “Will children become accustomed to saying and doing whatever they want to a digital assistant ‘do this, do that’ – talking as aggressively or rudely as they like without any consequences?..

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