The mystery of Alexa's eerie laugh has been solved

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Reports from around the world say that Alexa-powered smart speakers are spontaneously letting out evil laughs.

Some users on Twitter and Reddit say the outbursts have been entirely spontaneous. It turns out, the event was triggered due to Alexa somehow interpreting two humans having a chat as "Alexa, laugh", commanding it to laugh.

The random cackling, as you can imagine, has been described variously as "really creepy", a good reason why it's "time to move" and "the scariest s*** I've ever heard".

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The short laugh that users recorded and posted on Twitter sounds slightly sarcastic, as if the person laughing were trying to convey that they didn't really find whatever they'd just heard amusing.

It turns out that, in rare circumstances, Alexa can mistakenly hear the phrase "Alexa, laugh" even when that's not what was said. On Wednesday, March 7, Amazon confirmed that they were aware of the problem and that they are working to fix it.

At least, that's what Amazon Echo owners say they've been hearing lately.

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Amazon has changed the phrase necessary to make Alexa laugh to, "Alexa, can you laugh?", which should be less likely to generate false positives.

The most annoying thing about digital assistants is that you have to say a trigger word after every request, with few exceptions.

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. Some Echo users reported last week that the voice assistant was down for several hours, drawing comparisons to Amazon's Super Bowl commercial, in which the assistant lost its voice.

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