'Customers also bought a cock brush' - Amazon's new Swedish site raises a smile

2020-11-03

We miss the days when AI had a sense of humour. Back in the day, and it wasn't so very long ago, BackBytes enjoyed travelling to foreign climes and sampling the local cuisine, particularly when the English-language menus had been authored by Google Translate. After all, who would not be tempted by delicacies such as ‘Bucket of Bones', ‘Duck Wire Explosion' and ‘F*ck a Bullfrog'?

Trouble is, AI is now so damn boring, so eager to please, so correct. It has lost all its character. So we were delighted to learn from SVT (via , natch), that AI pranking is alive and well, at least in that corner of the world.

Amazon's Swedish-language website was launched last week, but apparently $200 billion dollar man Jeff Bezos (or more likely one of his minions) decided that a human translator would be far too costly, given that has all that AI at its disposal. What better way to showcase the company's tech than a purely machine-translated shopping experience? After all machines are the future and don't need to take time off for a pee.

"We are pleased to open the doors for and offer Swedish consumers a selection of more than 150 million products, of which tens of thousands come from local Swedish companies," said Alex Ootes, vice president of European expansion at Amazon, in a press release.

Among those 150 million products, Swedish shoppers were surprised,  some no doubt delighted, to find an expansive range of cock brushes, cock paintings, rape curtains and prostitute earrings, although how many came from local Swedish companies was not made clear.

However, shoppers in Sweden began to question whether an actual local Swedish person had been shown the site before it hit the prime time. Apparently not.

"We want to thank everyone who highlights these problems and helps us make changes and improve ," said corporate spokesperson Marta Karlqvist, shortly before being replaced by an AI. "We are very happy to have launched but are only in day two, and we always want to improve the customer experience."

We also miss the days when corporate spokespeople had a sense of humour, but unfortunately we can't remember those.