PETALING JAYA: More than a year after raising much controversy in Malaysia, a “Love and Sex with Robots” conference will finally be taking place in December.
A university in London will be hosting the event which had been declared illegal by Malaysian authorities when it was originally scheduled to be held in Johor on Nov 16 last year, Daily Mail reported.
When news of a “Love and Sex with Robots” conference first emerged in October last year, Inspector-General of Police Khalid Abu Bakar declared it as illegal, telling the organisers, “don’t hold such conferences in Malaysia.”
He had also dismissed the sex conference as ridiculous, and questioned the reason behind organising such an event.
“There’s nothing scientific about sex and robots! It is an offence to have anal sex in Malaysia, what more with robots.
“These people are trying to bring in an unnatural culture to this country and this is forbidden,” Khalid was reported to have said.
The IGP had also warned that police would take action against organisers and participants should the conference carry on as originally scheduled from Nov 16-19.
The event originally planned to be held in Malaysia last November, is the Second International Congress on Love and Sex with Robots.
According to the official website, the event will now take place over two days, Dec 19-20 at Goldsmiths, University of London. The first event was held in Funchal, Madeira, in Portugal on Nov 11, 2014.
It will bring together professionals and academics at the forefront of developing the technology.
The event website describes the event as providing a setting for academics and professionals to discuss their work after a strong upsurge of interest in the more personal aspects of human relationships with these artificials partners.
Among the topics to be discussed are, Intelligent Electronic Sex Hardware, Gender Approaches, Roboethics, and “Teledildonics”, which refers to sex toys that can be controlled via wifi, Bluetooth and smartphones applications.
The UK daily also reported that Dr Kate Devlin, a computer lecturer who is controversial for her stance on robot sex technology, will be hosting the event.
Devlin had previously been reported as saying, “I think robots could become our lovers in the future … Does love have to be reciprocated in order to be valid?”
According to Daily Mail, debate has raged whether using sex robots is a matter of taking human interaction with technology a step too far, and it is contributing to a decline in human-to-human intimate relationships, or if sex robots could be used in healthy ways for individuals and couples.
Other suggestions on the benefits of sex robots is that it may be a good replacement for sex workers.