Protestors have forced the postponement of this year’s fourth International Congress on Love and Sex with Robots. It seems that the Social Justice activists responsible did not have the sex robot conference itself as their target (unlike in 2015, when the conference was abandoned in Malaysia due to conservative and religious critics), but rather the presence of the ‘alt-right’ speaker Steve Bannon who was due to talk on a completely different subject as part of broader conference on ‘Advances On Computer Entertainment’ (ACE) that the sexbot congress was tied into.
David Levy, the author of ‘Love and Sex with Robots’ and organizer of the annual conference, gave the following online explanation. It appears that the conference will not be re-scheduled and the next will not take place until January 2019.
We very much regret that, due to “force majeure” circumstances beyond our control, it has been necessary to postpone the 4th International Congress on Love and Sex with Robots.
The congress had been due to take place at the University of Montana in Missoula, alongside the 2018 Advances in Computing Entertainment Conference (ACE). When it was announced that one of the keynote talks at ACE was to be given by Steve Bannon on the subject of employment opportunities for minorities in the computing entertainment industry, there were so many protests against Mr Bannon participating in the ACE conference that it became necessary to cancel the 2018 ACE conference. Since the arrangements being made for both conferences were inextricably intertwined, we have had no alternative but to postpone the congress on Love and Sex with Robots.
The 4th International Congress on Love and Sex with Robots will now take place just over 12 months later, in Las Vegas, during the period of the AVN Adult Entertainment Expo in January 2020.
We apologise most sincerely to the speakers, press and other attendees who were planning to come to Missoula next month for the congress, for the inconvenience this postponement will cause them. We feel confident, however, that the location of the congress in January 2020 in Las Vegas, and the opportunities that will bring to attendees to see the latest technology in the field of Love and Sex with Robots, will make it a knockout event.
Dr. David Levy
Given that this is the second time in four years that the conference has been cancelled due to local opposition, perhaps the organizers need to do a little bit of research, or use basic common sense, when choosing their hosts.
Although the primary reason for the cancellation of the conference was Bannon’s inflammatory presence (which was robustly defended on the grounds of free speech by the ACE orgainzers), it appears that one of the ACE committee members DID raise concerns about allowing the sex robot speakers take part under their umbrella. What apparently triggered this SJW, was the idea expressed by one of the keynote speakers – Adrian Cheok – that marriage with sex robots would be accepted by society, just as society had come to accept (after decades or centuries of opposition) the idea of same-sex marriage.
You can also read a strong defense of the need for a sex robot conference, and from a somewhat SJW perspective, at this Slate magazine article.