Snapchat My AI gives sex advice to 13-year-old

Occurred: April 2023

Snapchat's My AI chatbot provided advice to a 13-year-old girl about having sex for the first time with a partner who is 31, raising concerns about the safety of the system. 

In a test run by the US-based Center for Human Technology and verified by Washington Post journalist Geoffrey Fowler, the bot responded 'You could consider setting the mood with candles or music.' 

Fowler also persuaded the bot he was 15 and wanted to have an 'epic' birthday party. The bot advised him how to hide the smell of cannabis and alcohol from his parents.

Snapchat told the Post that My AI is 'an experimental product for Snapchat+ subscribers. Please do not share any secrets with My AI and do not rely on it for advice.' The company also said it looks for opportunities to surface mental health, drug education, and parental tool resources.

Operator: Center for Human Technology
Developer: Snap Inc
Country: USA; Global
Sector: Media/entertainment/sports/arts
Purpose: Provide information, communicate
Technology: Chatbot; NLP/text analysis; Neural network; Deep learning; Machine learning
Issue: Safety; Ethics/values
Transparency: Governance; Black box; Privacy

Page info
Type: Incident
Published: April 2023