Robot Congress

By Ryan Morrison

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Ryan Morrison, better known on Reddit and the internet as "Video Game Attorney," and co-hosts Austin Hoffman and Ryan O'Connor, take a hard look at how the law will react to the fast growth in technology. Will we need consent to sleep with a robot? Will our organs be government property? Come in and find out.

Episode Date
ROBOT CONGRESS - 76 - Are ROMs Legal

This week Morrison, Austin and Ali discuss the burning question in everyone's minds: is the unauthorized distribution of old (and new!) games through ROMs and their Emulators illegal? Will they result in legal action? Find out this week, on Robot Congress!

Aug 14, 2018
ROBOT CONGRESS - 75 - Bird Law

Why are Birds terrorizing major cities around the US? This week Morrison, Austin and Ali examine the electric scooter sensation that's sweeping the nation. Is it a great eco-friendly startup, or a thousand thousand lawsuits waiting to happen?

Aug 07, 2018
ROBOT CONGRESS - 74 - Fake It Til You Make It: The Kylie Jenner Story

Forbes has declared that Kylie Jenner is set to be the youngest ever Self-Made billionaire- this week on Robot Congress Morrison, Austin and Ali are analyzing this claim and the counterfeit industry that surrounds popular products like celebrity makeup.

Jul 17, 2018
ROBOT CONGRESS - 73 - Trumped Up Supreme Court Picks (Ft. Ali Rothman)

This week is about the Supreme Court, what they do, and the new nomination! Morrison and Austin are joined this week by Allison Rothman to answer your burning questions about the Most Supreme Court of the Land (in this case, the US!)

Jul 10, 2018
ROBOT CONGRESS - 72 - Future of Esports Player Unions

The episode more requested than any other: Should esports pros unionize?

May 08, 2018
ROBOT CONGRESS - 71 - Charity or Scam, an Examination

It's always great to give, but are you giving to the right charities? Some charities will piddle away your kind donation keeping their own wheels spinning, whilst others are worthy recipients of your hard-earned currency. This week Morrison, Austin, and O'Connor dive into the murky depths of Lake Charity, sifting through the mud and picking out the gems!

May 01, 2018
ROBOT CONGRESS - 70 - A Way Too Fast Rambling Through Every IP Law

DMCA takedowns are all over YouTube, but what do they mean?! People throw around the terms copyright and trademark as if they're interchangeable! Why is the McDonalds logo Reserved?

Join us this week as Morrison, Austin and O'Connor dive into these constant internet topic terms, educating and entertaining you!

Apr 24, 2018
ROBOT CONGRESS - 69 - King of Kong Dethroned

What does it take to be a video game star? How far would someone go to secure his place as the King of Kong? This week Morrison, Austin and O'Connor discuss the torrid tale of Billy Mitchell and Steve Wiebe, who the true King of Kong is, and some of what Austin know about Football.

Apr 17, 2018
ROBOT CONGRESS - 68 - President Facebook

Why is everyone threatening to unplug from Facebook? Has your privacy been breached? Do we deserve privacy at all? This week Morrison and Austin delve deep into the seedy underbelly of Facebook and come face to face with the fact that maybe, just maybe, WE were the breach all along! (audience gasps)

Apr 10, 2018
ROBOT CONGRESS - 67 - Artificial Intelligence and the First Amendment

Should you fear artificial intelligence? This week Morrison Austin and O'Connor discuss the robot rebellion, self-driving cars, and the glorious dangers of the future-world we're speeding towards!

Apr 03, 2018
ROBOT CONGRESS - 66 - Go YouTube Yourself (ft. Mowtendoo!)

Ever thought about making a YouTube channel? Want to Broadcast Yourself out there? Do you have what it takes?

This week Morrison, Austin and O'Connor talk to the talented YouTuber Mowtendoo and dig into the nitty gritty of creating content online!

Feb 13, 2018
ROBOT CONGRESS - 65 - Is Playing Music on Twitch Legal? (ft. Noah Downs!)

My favorite streamer had Taylor Swift on shuffle in the background and now his videos are no longer available! What kind of music can I use for the background of my livestream and YouTube videos?

This week Morrison Austin and O'Connor are excited to have Noah Downs aka @MyLawyerFriend on the show to talk all about sync licensing- what you music you can and can't use online to set the mood!

Feb 06, 2018
ROBOT CONGRESS - 64 - Government Shutdowns and You!

Welcome to the US Congress, where the government shuts down but the politicians still get paid!

Are the banks still open? Has the looting begun? What exactly does a government shutdown entail?!

This week Morrison, Austin and O'Connor discuss just exactly WHAT a government shutdown in the USA means, and how often it's happened. Plus: Who's the heart of the Starfox team? What exactly is Cluedo, and why can't I kill Mrs. White with a wrench in the drawing room anymore?!

Jan 30, 2018
ROBOT CONGRESS - 62 - Breaking into Esports

Ever wonder what being a pro esport player is like? Do you think you have what it takes to play games on the big stage? This week Morrison Austin and O'Connor dive head-first into the booming world of esports!

This week we're sponsored by the new [adult swim] show HOT STREETS! Those roads are BOILING!

Jan 16, 2018
ROBOT CONGRESS - 61 - Looking Forward to 2018

What's going to be the best movie of 2018? What soon-to-come games will blow your mind? Has Austin caught up with the times, or is he still stuck in the 1970's? Join us this week as Austin and O'Connor look INTO THE FUTURE of 2018.

Jan 09, 2018
ROBOT CONGRESS - 60 - Robot Congress 2017 Year in Review

What's Morrison's favorite game of 2017? What could Austin's top 2017 movie be if he never sees new movies? This week Morrison, Austin, and O'Connor review the highlights of this crazy and amazing year!

Jan 02, 2018
ROBOT CONGRESS - 59 - The FCC Strikes Bargains

Is this the end of the internet as we know it? The FCC has repealed government-enforced net neutrality, so sit in on this session as we fill you in on what this actually means: the good, the bad and the potential dystopia we'll be headed towards. Plus, Morrison and O'Connor chime in at the end with their thoughts on the new Star Wars movie!

We're sponsored this week by hellofresh! coupon code congress30 at nets you $30 off your first week of meals, so give it a shot!

Dec 19, 2017
ROBOT CONGRESS - 58 - 2017 Game Awards Recap

Who won the 2017 Game Awards? Who deserved to win, who lost out?! This week Ryan Morrison and Austin recap the results, and talk Cuphead, Zelda, Uncharted, and many other games that hit and miss at this year's awards!

Dec 12, 2017
ROBOT CONGRESS - 57 - Decrypting Bitcoin

What is cryptocurrency? Will it make all governments irrelevant? Will Bitcoin topple nations? Will Dogecoin make it to the moon?

This week Ryan Morrison, Ryan O'Connor and Austin Hoffman talk cryptocurrency! We delve into exactly WHAT it is, why it's worth money, and whether it'll stick around in the future!

Dec 05, 2017
ROBOT CONGRESS - 56 - RoCo @ PAX Unplugged

What's the seedy underbelly of tabletop gaming really like? What's a Vampire LARP? How many dwarves does it take to get to the center of the earth?

This week Morrison, O'Connor and Austin talk about their awesome trip to PAX Unplugged!

Sponsor codes, use to support the show!

Squarespace: ROBOT

Hello Fresh: congress30

Nov 29, 2017
ROBOT CONGRESS - 55 - Pitchforks for EA

EA has released Star Wars Battlefront II and with it a bevy of loot boxes and character-gating. Do they deserve the tremendous amount of hate they're getting for the game and their player-wallet-gouging practices? Probably! This week Ryan Morrison and Austin go through a list of what makes EA worthy of such vitriol!

Nov 14, 2017
ROBOT CONGRESS - 54 - BlizzCongress Spectacular

Hearthstone! Overwatch! Warcraft! This week we're discussing BLIZZCON! Morrison gives his take on his trip and O'Connor and Austin go over some of the big points of Blizzard's huge annual event! We're amazingly excited about this one! Maybe too excited!

Try Squarespace! Make your website and support the show, use code ROBOT to get 10% off!

Nov 07, 2017
ROBOT CONGRESS - 53 - Ghostly Congress Special

I broke my leg running from a chainsaw clown, can I sue? I have this GREAT idea for Halloween-themed wine...

This week Ryan Morrison and Ryan O'Connor talk injuries in haunted houses, disputes over HalloWINE (awesome name, we know) PLUS Scooby Doo Villains! Are they really committing crimes or just defending their homes from pesky kids?

HelloFresh is our sponsor this week, coupon code congress30 at nets you $30 off your first week of meals! It's pretty darn tasty and easy to cook.

Oct 31, 2017
ROBOT CONGRESS - 52 - Are Loot Boxes Gambling (Ft. Marc Whipple)

Shadow of Mordor says I can pay more money to possibly get a cool orc! I just spent a tenth of my paycheck trying to get the Halloween Zenyatta skin and came up with two Mercys and a Roadhog! Why is this even allowed?

We talk with attorney Marc Whipple about loot boxes, the ESRB, gambling in gaming, and if the end is nigh!

Squarespace! Use it with coupon code ROBOT to get 10% off and support the show!

Oct 24, 2017
ROBOT CONGRESS - 51 - Disappointing Sequels, The Prequel

What games, movies and books have let you down? The hype trains run at full-steam sometimes, and end up flying off the tracks into Disappointment Gorge! This week Austin and Ryan O'Connor talk their biggest letdowns in games and movies, and Zack Snyder's Sucker Punch didn't even make the list!

Oct 17, 2017
ROBOT CONGRESS - 50 - Tales from the Tavern

It's all over popular culture nowadays, from Stranger Things to Critical Role to celebrities confessing their love of the game, and Game of Thrones isn't helping either. What is Dungeons and Dragons about? Do you summon real demons? Where are the dragons hatched? Are there whips in the dungeon?

Join Ryan O'Connor and Austin as they explore their D&D history and discuss the incredible (and terrible) experiences they've had with this game over the years!

Oct 11, 2017
ROBOT CONGRESS - 49 - Oh the Games We Play

Do you have games that have sat in your library for ages, unplayed and dusty? What games do you play over and over, rather than starting those lovely games that you eyed for so long but had no the courage to pick up?

This week Ryan O'Connor and Austin talk about their gaming loves and hates!

Brought to you by Squarespace, use coupon ROBOT for 10% off!

Oct 03, 2017
ROBOT CONGRESS - 48 - PubG vs. Fornite: Battle of the Royales

Can Bluehole sue Epic Games for their use of the Battle Royale gamestyle that made Playerunknown's Battlegrounds a Steam store superstar? What does Bluehole mean by "contemplating further action?" Can you use other company's products in your own promotions? Bluehole has stirred up a storm with their statements about Epic Games' new PvP mode for Fortnite, and we're going to get to the bottom of this cyclone!

Sep 26, 2017
ROBOT CONGRESS - 47 - Cosplay 101 (Ft. Stella Chuu!)

Who owns your face? What if a creep takes a picture of you when you're not looking? Stella Chuu joins us to talk breaking into the industry, remaining relevant, and how to ask for permission to take a picture with a cosplayer you think is awesome.

What does it take to be a cosplay professional verse a guy who buys a deadpool costume off the Internet? How DO you avoid melting your eyeballs with colored contacts?

We're sponsored by Squarespace! Use code ROBOT to get 10% off and support the show! Also, Penn State Online.

Sep 19, 2017
ROBOT CONGRESS - 46 - PewDiePie's DMCA Dilemma

PewDiePie, one of YouTube's biggest personalities, has made another blunder and is finding out that developers have every right to DMCA his Lets Play videos. Find out why the creators and owners of the games hold all the power in this week's Robot Congress!

Brought to you by Squarespace- use coupon code ROBOT for 10% off! Plus, Penn State Online.

Sep 12, 2017
ROBOT CONGRESS - 45 - Attack of the Remakes

Why are so many game companies remaking old games I love? Can I share the Star Wars v Star Trek game I spent two years on? What if it's free?

We're talking remakes, both official and unofficial! From Street Fighter to Dungeon Keeper, Gearbox buying Homeworld and remastering it to that KOTOR fan remake that isn't lawful no matter what their website says.

Learn ALL ABOUT IT this week on Robot Congress!

Remember Squarespace? Use coupon ROBOT to get 10% off their awesome service! Also, Penn State Online!

Sep 05, 2017
ROBOT CONGRESS - 44 - Gold Scammers Stole My Parents (Money)

Scammers stole my kid's account! What can I do, and was it worth anything for the 300 hours he sunk into it?!

Hey- that troll stole my level 36 magic staff! Can I sue him, or have him thrown in jail? Am I destined to spend another 15 hours grinding to acquire a new staff?

Will the government tax my gold gains?!

Find out on Robot Congress!

We're brought to you by Squarespace- use code ROBOT to get 10% off! Plus, Penn State Online!

Aug 29, 2017
ROBOT CONGRESS - 43 - The O'Connor Origin Story

Robot Congress has ejected Morrison from the galactic senate this week! Everyone loves a villainous origin story- that's right, we're interviewing our new co-host to plumb the dark secrets of his past, this week on ROBOT CONGRESS!

Brought to you by Squarespace --- use coupon code ROBOT to get 10% off.

PLUS Penn State Online!

Aug 22, 2017
ROBOT CONGRESS - 42 - Take Two of These C&Ds (the OpenIV story)
What happens when you mix Russian modding software with Grand Theft Auto 5's incredible popularity? LAWSUITS?! Probably not. Cease and Desists?! Definitely. Featuring IRON MAN (as an example of why modding can be detrimental to a publisher). This episode is brought to you by Squarespace, use offer code ROBOT to support the show and get 10% off- as well as Penn State Online.
Aug 15, 2017
ROBOT CONGRESS - 41 - Murder She Spoke (The Michelle Carter Story)
Can you kill someone with a text? Does free speech end when it's used to harm another? We continue our rolling out of ALL NEW Robot Congress episodes by delving deep into the sordid tale of wrath and woe that is: Death by Text! Michelle Carter convinced Conrad Roy to kill himself, but why and how? Find out this week on Robot Congress! This episode is brought to you by Squarespace. Use code ROBOT to save 10% and support the show!
Aug 09, 2017
ROBOT CONGRESS - 40 - RELAUNCH (and the Alex Mauer story)
IT'S OUR RELAUNCH! And we couldn't have done a worse job. All new sound and recording equipment and Ryan somehow managed to speak into the wrong end of his microphone (shut up, it's possible) and create an awful echo'y sound. But it's not nearly as bad as the story behind this week's topic. Alex Mauer has rum rampant with the DMCA takedowns, hitting both commentator and creator alike. Was she allowed to do this? Did she own the content? What powers does the DMCA actually grant, and what happens if you cheat? All this and more on this week's ROBOT CONGRESS! (Now out every Tuesday)
Aug 02, 2017
ROBOT CONGRESS - 39 - Steam's gone Direct, skip the Greenlight (w/ Sheena Perez)
This week Robot Congress has Sheena Perez, super awesome game dev and music composer extraordinaire to talk about Steam Greenlight closing and Steam Direct's announcement. What should you know if you plan to make a game? What will Austin rant about this time? FIND OUT NOW!
Jun 02, 2017
ROBOT CONGRESS - 032 - Jeff Rubin
Mr. Jeff Rubin (formerly of CollegeHumor and Buzzfeed), host of the Jeff Rubin Jeff Rubin Show stops by to talk about his career, games, hot takes on Uncharted, and how awful Austin is at naming celebrities on the fly.
Feb 24, 2017
ROBOT CONGRESS - 020 - A New List
Sep 22, 2016
ROBOT CONGRESS - 008 - Future of Never Happened
Will we all be wearing suits of armor, complete with jetpacks? Will flying to work replace the usual boring commute? Nope! Come hear 25 predictions from the past, about today, that never came true.
Jun 08, 2016