“Robots Are Starting To Break the Law…”

“…and Nobody Knows What To Do About It.” How can you resist clicking a headline like that? [Daniel Rivero, Fusion]


  • The headline is misleading. The article is about “bots”, computer programs to automate things on the internet, not “robots”, computer controlled physical machines.

  • […] “Robots Are Starting To Break the Law…” at Fusion. Tip of the hat to Overlawyered for the […]

  • The folks responsible for unleashing the ‘bot were in Switzerland, which has a robust protection for artistic freedom. In America, if they were not careful, they might have ended up facing long prison terms.

  • It’s really about the same as if your pet does something, isn’t it? If you leave your dog to roam and he kills your neighbor’s chickens, you’re probably legally responsible, but you’re also probably not going to jail like you would if you killed the chickens yourself. (But if you purposely put the dog in your neighbor’s yard knowing that he’d probably kill some chickens, then you would likely be criminally liable.)

    In this case, they were buying random things from the dark net. They HAD to know that contraband was going to show up sooner rather than later. This is sort of like going to someone standing at the street corner and saying “I’ll buy whatever you have”.

    And calling this “art” is a stretch.