“Alexa, STOP!” How many times have you shouted that after unintentionally waking a voice-enabled Amazon device? Now imagine being the parent of a human named Alexa who is trying to coexist with your smart speakers.
That messy 2021 reality — and more serious issues with the name — has apparently led to a drop-off in the number of babies being named Alexa, seven years after Amazon chose the name for its artificial intelligence newborn.
The Atlantic has an interesting new report this week on how “Amazon killed the name Alexa.”
The rise in popularity of Amazon’s Echo and other voice-enabled devices coincides with a steep decline in the number of American babies named Alexa as the name became rather ubiquitous. Alexa joins other names which fell out of style after their association changed — such as Hillary, after Hillary Clinton became first lady.
And while sharing a product name might not always be problem, The Atlantic points to how Alexa differs because “Amazon turned it into a name for a female voice that does your bidding.” Younger kids are reportedly being teased at school with an onslaught of commands.
“Many parents [of Alexas] are changing their kids’ names or using their middle names because it leads to just horrendous bullying,” Laura Wattenberg, the founder of the naming-trends website Namerology, told the magazine.