Alexa, Are You Safe For My Kids?


Earlier this month, the toy-giant Mattel announced it had pulled the plug on plans to sell an interactive gadget for children.

The device, called Aristotle, looked similar to a baby monitor with a camera. Critics called it creepy.

Powered by artificial intelligence, Aristotle could get to know your child — at least that was how the device was being pitched.

“Aristotle is designed to comfort, entertain, teach and assist,” according to a company release issued in January.

It was designed to “displace essential parenting functions, like soothing a crying baby or reading a bedtime story,” says Josh Golin, executive director of the advocacy group Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood. “So that the children would form an attachment to it.”

But Aristotle went further than that. It wasn’t going to just give the child information. It would have been able to collect information from the child in the bedroom — and then upload it to the cloud. To read more from MICHAELEEN DOUCLEFF and ALLISON AUBREY, click here.