Author Archive


This is an article I wrote in December of 2013 but that, for various reasons, I never published. The news underlying it is well in the past now, but the interesting issues that news presented are not. It's not my intention to dreg up the problems associated with this again, only to engage in a fun thought experiment about how contracts and labor law work or may someday work in the world of professional competitive video gaming. I'm presenting the ...


Recently it was revealed that the National Security Administration has been spying on people playing video games online. Agents recorded text, chat, and biometric data on the Xbox Live network, World of Warcraft, Second Life, and more in what was billed as a way to gather information on terrorists, although the leaked documents show that no actionable terrorism intelligence has been found in the half dozen year history of the program. Needless to say, I was not happy about ...


The Trans-Pacific Partnership, or TPP, is a major international free trade agreement that's been in the works for a few years now. Unfortunately, it's been negotiated in nearly complete secrecy from the public with only small and occasional leaks to let us know what it would do. That is, until today. Earlier today, WikiLeaks posted a leaked text of the complete negotiated draft of the TPP's Intellectual Property Rights Chapter. This is a fascinating leak. It confirms the fears that ...


Interview on Live on Three

Wednesday afternoon I was invited to talk with Slasher, DJ Wheat, and SeltzerPlease on Live on Three, one of the biggest live web shows in competitive video gaming. We talked about my piece on the potential regulatory issues that may come from the sportsification of video games and some additional hypothetical scenarios. Unfortunately I misspoke in some of my answers, but that's live media for you! After discussing the paper, we move on to talk about Evolution 2013 and talk about ...


The US State Department made news recently by granting P-1 athlete visas to a brand new set of qualified foreign players, allowing them to compete and work in the United States for up to five years. The visa process is rarely newsworthy, but this time things were a little different. This time the athletes weren't sports stars. They were League of Legends video game players. Riot Games, developer of League of Legends, had worked for months to secure visas for its ...


A couple days ago I did a Skype interview with Anne from Tech Feed about the recent news that Riot had secured P-1 athlete visas for League of Legends players from the US State Department. This is huge news, since it marks the first time that the US government explicitly endorsed competitive video gaming. In this interview, Anne asks me to talk a bit about the legalities of P-1 visas, other countries that recognize competitive video gaming before, and the difficulty ...


Analysis of Capcom’s Takedown of Evil and Oni

Note: this article was first published on in April 2011. Unfortunately, it was wiped out when Shoryuken underwent a complete overhaul. I'm reposting it here without edits! As I'm sure you've all heard by now, somehow the code to unlock Evil Ryu and Oni in Super Street Fighter IV: Arcade Edition was leaked. Almost immediately after arcades began unlocking them in the United States on Saturday, YouTube and streaming sites were flooded with footage of the two characters. ...


Note: this article was first published on in April 2011. Unfortunately, Shoryuken has since undergone a complete overhaul that wiped this article out. I'm reposting it here without edits! Recently we all heard a rumor about Warner Bros' Mortal Kombat 9, one of the most eagerly anticipated MK titles in memory. According to, MK9 will utilize a so-called “1st purchaser reward program” in which online play will only be available through a one-time use code that comes with ...


Grand Opening

Hey, everyone! I hope you'll welcome my new legal website to the internet. This site may be new, but my legal practice has quite a bit of history behind it. I've been involved in entertainment since I was very young. In middle school, I played a bit part in a movie and published work in a national poetry anthology. In high school, I became editor-in-chief of my high school newspaper, wrote for the Los Angeles Times, served as statewide Opinions Editor ...