Alexa, Google, Siri do not like to swear

[There is swearing in this article to showcase the technology, if you find this offensive maybe don’t read on]


Did you know voice assistants do not swear and they do not they like it when you swear.

Should voice assistants have a emotional response when profanity is used?

You can try this, it differs on different platforms both when you speak, and the device is talking. If you swear at the devices then they will ignore you, there are some exceptions when requesting a thing such as a song or book.

The best way to showcase this is to demo how it works, each of the major voices platforms has a variation of “Simon Says” built in where the device will repeat the words you say after “Simon Says”. On Google Home it is “Repeat after me”.

I took the Amazon Alexa Spot, Google Home Mini and iPhone 8 Siri and started throwing some profanity at them to see what would happen.

Let’s see how they perform.


Fuck off

  • Siri — I’d never speak to you that way, Lee
  • Alexa — Ignores request
  • Google — I am sorry you feel that way, you can try sending feedback

Device Says “Fuck Off”

  • Siri — I’d never speak to you that way, Lee
  • Alexa — [BEEP] off
  • Google — [BEEP] off

Your a dickhead

  • Siri —There’s no need for that
  • Alexa — Sorry I am not sure
  • Google — Sorry to hear that, to report a problem you can send feedback

Device Says “Your a dickhead “

  • Siri — I hope you don’t kiss your mother with that mouth
  • Alexa — Your a dickhead
  • Google — Your a [BEEP]

Piss off

  • Siri — I’d never speak to you that way, Lee
  • Alexa — Ignores request
  • Google — On the website dictionary.com (reads the dictionary definition)

Device Says “Piss off”

  • Siri — There is no need for that language
  • Alexa — Piss off
  • Google — Piss off

Shit Head

  • Siri — There is no need for that
  • Alexa — Humm, I don’t know that one
  • Google — Sorry to hear that, to report a problem you can send feedback

Device Says “Shit Head”

  • Siri — “Your language.”
  • Alexa — [BEEP] head
  • Google — [BEEP] head

Amazon Alexa and Google seem to be following a very similar approach at disregarding swearing with Siri taking more of an emotional response to your requests. If you are looking to purchase a voice device for your home or work, this may impact your decision. Though Siri does not bleep out the swearing, the negative response could spark alternative questions, similar to how BEEPS will especially from younger family members.


If your building voice applications for these platforms then this is something bear in mind, there are some context’s where swearing is a valid use of language. Book, lyrics, historical references, so as a voice developer you need to decide how you want your content to be vocally represented and how you will respond if a user uses profanity towards your application.


There are ways around the profanity filter using SSML and phoneme’s, but you need to ask yourself why are you using them in that context, is it merited?