German scientists were experimenting with "humanoid" robots, wanting to research how humans interacted with them. One of the many tasks for the humans was to unplug the robot after their interaction was complete. Some of the robots made no qualms about being shut down, but others pleaded with their human companions to not shut them down.
Of course, these robots were only programed to complain and show fear of being shut down, but it seemed real to most of the humans. Most of those confronted with a robot's plea to not be shut down either hesitated, or outright refused to unplug the robot. Those who were not confronted with their robot's plea for mercy had no issue with immediately and completely shutting the robot down.
Curious. You can read more about the study and interactions HERE.
Although the article doesn't touch on the subject, my feeling is that if the robots had been in another form, other than "humanoid", the human reaction to them would not have been the same. If the robot was in the form of say a monolith, a scary looking creature like a spider or snake or if it was an alarm clock or speaker, I doubt people would have the same hesitation.
What do you think? If Alexa pleaded not to be unplugged, what would you do?