Apple's virtual assistant Siri is under fire after it came to light that it has a surprising definition for the word "mother."

On a Mac or iPhone, users can ask Siri to define the word "mother." Initially, it gives a standard definition:

‒ "A woman in relation to a child or children to whom she has given birth"

‒ "A female animal in relation to its offspring."

‒ "(Especially as a title or form of address) The head of a female religious community."


The issue crops up when Siri asks you if you want to hear the second definition. If you give an affirmative response, Siri responds "motherf--ker."

Fox News has confirmed that even though some Apple users noted the issue has been resolved, it was still delivering the controversial result as of Monday morning.

Apple did not immediately respond to an inquiry from Fox News.

Originally, Siri was delivering the surprising definition when it was asked "what does mother mean?" That query has since been fixed, but the issue still remains when it's asked to "define the word mother."

Siri is pulling the definition from the Oxford Dictionary, which offers the swear word as a secondary definition for the word "mother" in a somewhat colloquial response.

Ironically, the issue was first spotted on the Apple subreddit and posted in an Apple News link via ArsTechnica.


This is not the first time Apple's Siri, which many consider to be inferior to other digital assistants such as Amazon's Alexa or Google's Assistant, has said expletives when asked for a response.

It's also not the first time digital assistants have used swear language.

In 2016, Microsoft built a Twitter bot using artificial intelligence, Tay, which was designed to mimic and converse with users in real time. However, it became corrupted and caused significant controversy when it posted racist and offensive tweets, as people took advantage of the machine's learning capabilities.

Tay was shut down just 16 hours after it was launched.

Follow Chris Ciaccia on Twitter @Chris_Ciaccia