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Episode 500: Nerdist Podcast
Adam Carolla #4
Nerdist PodcastNerdist Podcast

Nerdist Podcast: Adam Carolla #4

Adam Carolla returns to the Nerdist for a FOURTH time! They talk about Adam’s dream to have a pet Pegasus and the fight against patent trolls who are currently suing Adam and other podcasters by claiming they are violating a patent on podcasting!

Click here to find out more about how you can help defeat the patent trolls!

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  1. Joe says:

    BOMBARD these patent troll assholes with emails….

  2. Carlos Perez says:

    Funny how Señor Abuelito sounded a lot like Adam Carolla.

    FUCK PATENT TROLLS! Should call them patent thieves.

  3. adam says:

    spent 10 min looking in to this online and i found out, A its not a Patent Troll its the people that made the patent them self. also they are not trying to take any one down they just want people to pay for using there “audio in a episodic playlist format ” and i tunes pays a fee for using the playlist format they use…. you could just not have a playlist format that qs up a new podcast after ones dun and your in the clear …..

  4. Ben says:

    @Alyssa and @Saeed already mentioned the excellent Planet Money episode which interviews the inventor of the patent (so like many have said, not really a troll), and links to the two TAL stories about patent trolls.

    And not to reiterate what many of the comments have already described, but I actually had to stop listening 40 minutes through since neither Adam or Chris seemed to have any clue what they were discussing. Chris has talked about things he doesn’t know, ex. sports, to [sports] experts, but to carry on with Adam as if Adam was an expert was unbearable. This was like a bar conversation where folks get riled up, then go home and realize most of the facts were wrong and the discussion was pointless at best (not saying the overall theme wasn’t important). Point being, if the other person is an expert, Chris can take their word and be the great host he is, but to play a naive host that will believe whatever the guest says (when they are not an expert AND self-proclaimed to be ignoring the facts of the issue at hand) is lazy podcasting at best. I hope this is constructive criticism, by asking you to make a value call about the words and information coming from the guest.

  5. ericmci says:


    Mechanism=grounds for the lawsuit.
    And clearly they didn’t since this isn’t even a genuine patent troll case.
    It was a bitchfest about how Adam was being sued and not a lot of facts about how it was happening or even how it was able to happen.

  6. Michael Losee says:

    I once pulled a live flying squirrel out of a cat’s mouth – I can assure you that squirrels do shit. Now going to Fund Anything to check that out.

  7. Michael McNamara says:

    I’m a bit of a snob when it comes to Greek mythology, so I get really annoyed when people call the animal a Pegasus. The animal was a flying horse, its name was Pegasus. Please get it right.

  8. Jen says:

    I am listening to this episode and Im starting to think these patent trolls probably have no clue on podcasting and making a podcast. Apart from money I don’t understand why pick on Adam and the rest of the podcasting community.

  9. Cindy says:

    I totally support Adam and all other podcasters in this situation. I have heard several podcasts this week go on hiatus/indefinite break (The Lifehacker Podcast, both podcasts done by The Verge). Makes me think its a defensive move to avoid being targeted until this suit is settled, to not put their companies at risk.

  10. mayselc says:

    I wonder if it was fun or awkward for the awesome Katie Levine to produce a podcast with her current and former boss. I hope you didn’t get subpoenaed for the whole Donny Misraje thing.

  11. evan says:

    i really love you chris, and adam, and i completley agree with you about the patent troll thing. i donated to adam’s thing $50.

    but hearing you two talk about this for an hour was probably the most boring thing i’ve ever stuck to and listened ever.

    i just kept thinking, hey maybe it will get better, they’ll talk about something interesting? maybe? no? no.

    it was horrible. you should just trim this to 10 min, and make something better your 500th podcast.

    as important as this issue is, this ‘podcast’ totally sucked.

  12. Ross says:

    The words they’re searching for are “legal extortion” and “precedent”; that’s what this is, and what a victory by the trolls would represent. Simple. It _is_ the modern digital version of the old protection rackets(which targeted the little guys who didn’t have the resources or courage to be the first to say, “No.”).
    It’s all part & parcel of this modern American right-wing, laissez faire, business above all, money for nothing, I-must-be-in-the-right-because-I-haven’t-been called-on-it attitude that killed the unions, stripped us of most useful regulation, created/maintains/expands wealth inequality, and destroyed the economy(that includes war-profiteers like Haliburton).
    Adam & Chris, stop mincing words: they are parasitical scum, and must be crushed. Now.

  13. 500? No, 499! Episode #29 will never be forgotten! 🙂

  14. Kathy D says:

    Meanwhile, I’m over here trying to stop thinking up parody songs for A Handful of Weiner Jokes, mostly to the tune of Brimful of Asha or Pocket Full of Kryptonite.

  15. Saeed says:

    Every time I hear about patent trolls on NPR my blood just BOILS. I don’t know what it is about the topic, but I get as riled up about it as some people get over politics.

    You might want to check out Planet Monday’s podcast on the subject. They interviewed the actual guy who is suing Adam Corolla. The original idea itself isn’t even digital related, it came from an idea where people would order cassettes tapes of their favourite articles from their favourites magazines being read out loud. But somehow, thanks to the wonderful patent system, they were able to retroactively alter the patent to take podcasts into account.

  16. Sangria says:

    No one made the joke? alright, I’ll be the guy…

    Thanks for the D.

  17. Tim Gravenitus says:

    Hm. You know, if I were a tv or radio network, I’d be happy as a clam that someone’s found a way to kill amateur podcasting, and probably send them a few very expensive bouqets of lawyers wrapped in bows. Because it’d be in my best interest to simply pay a fee that only I and a small handful of others could afford, because it eliminates the level playing field by driving all the independent upstarts out of it. Even if the total listening audience shrank by 50%, if there are only a handful of companies that can afford to podcast, then I’m competing for a much bigger slice of that pie. It’d be pretty obvious and the outcry would be huge if we just went after anyone and everyone all at once, so, to better drum up sympathy and then set precedent, we’d best go after the big popular ones first, & then bring the hammer down later.

    In all, utilizing every method conceivable, eliminating your competition, consolidating resources & power, maximizing profit, and turning everything to shit around you in the process, is the great american way.

  18. KrissiTheHappyHippy says:

    I’ve listened to every Adam Carolla Podcast (all 5 years) & he is awesome. His facebook post led me here to listen to my first Nerdist podcast and I LOVE IT!!! Chris & Adam are great together.

  19. keddren says:

    Ercimci, They did talk about the mechanism. It was one of the first things they mentioned.

  20. ericmci says:

    Alyssa – I agree.
    I listened to the whole episode waiting to hear what the exact mechanism of the ‘patent’ in question was exactly.
    Adam and Chris talked around and around the issue without ever remotely explaining how this lawsuit was able to happen in the first place.
    Thanks for the link.
    Chris- if there was a reason – legally you couldn’t actually talk about what you were talking about- it would have been nice if you could have put that all in context for us.

  21. Alyssa says:

    How is it that I know more about this patent being used against podcasts from listening to a 20 minute Planet Money episode almost a year ago than either Adam or Chris seem to know.

    If you are going to try to raise money for something, you need to be informed. Getting sued must suck, but it is not surviving the holocaust. Learn your facts. I am in full support of the cause, but I am hesitant to donate my money when the spokesperson for it seems a bit clueless.

  22. Jorge says:

    Uh.. did this guy just compare being sued for patent infringement to the Holocaust?? I wish Chris would have mentioned that that was an extreme analogy. I support Adam in his cause but damn what a shithead he is.

  23. Andy says:

    I’m here to listen to Adam Carolla. I heard Nerdist a year ago or so, and God, it’s awful. Adam’s podcast blows this shit out of the water, and even he’s not that good.

  24. Mick says:

    @nerdist We had HBO during the summer of 1983. So whenever I heard that HBO opening music, it usually meant that I was about to watch Six Pack or The Pirate Movie.

  25. DAVIDPD says:

    I love Ace’s podcast. Eff the patent trolls.

  26. Dude says:

    Everyone agree patent trolls suck, but Chris should really have an attorney on to explain what’s happening. Dude is clueless (which is fine, not everyone needs to be a lawyer), but at least don’t disperse misinformation.

  27. Guy says:

    @Andy Right on!

    @Ryan If they’re not patent trolls, Why are they based in Texas where many patent trolls take safe haven? And why on God’s green earth do they deserve MILLIONS of dollars? If their audio-management software design is legitimate, why can’t they sell it like Photoshop or Autocad for a few thousand dollars per user? I know why, because they are trolls.

  28. Peter says:

    Every decade, the US increasingly buys into the idea that actual work is for suckers, poor people, foreigners and other undesirables. Why do all the work to make something when you can just leech off other people like a frickin parasite? So it takes me 2 years of hard physical and mental labor to put $50,000 away, and a lawyer shows up, and in a couple weeks convinces an ignorant judge that he deserves it all, walks off with it, and it means nothing to him while it ruins me.

    This is exactly why we make our products in USA but pulled out of the US market, only sell to Japan, Canada, and Europe. The insanely litigious nature of the US makes doing business here not worth the trouble.

  29. Frankie says:

    I feel like i just commented on ep 400! Congrats ! Sure the 500th was not the big epic episode people wanted but the message of the episode is so important in regards to future episodes! I gave what i could, looking forward to nerdist podcast 600!

  30. Andy says:


    “A patent troll, also called a patent assertion entity (PAE), is a person or company who enforces patent rights against accused infringers in an attempt to collect licensing fees, but does not manufacture products or supply services based upon the patents in question, thus engaging in economic rent-seeking.”

    Sounds exactly like what this company is doing. Its a BS patent.

  31. Ryan says:

    So apparently Adam is clueless.

    they are neither a troll nor is the patent new. If apple lost in 2011 good luck winning a trial now.

    A little research goes a long way

  32. Ryan says:

    Just an FYI the patent is owned by the company that filled it. Thus they are not a patent troll, as patent trolls are generally company’s who purchase patents that they did not create in order to financially gain from using them as legal leverage. Secondly the patent isnt on podcasts themselves but on presenting them in an episodic format. Oddly Itunes has been paying them royalties for years. All you have to do to circumvent the patent is to put each podcast on a separate page instead of listing them episodically. This was all discussed by the “podfather” Adam Curry on the No Agenda Show
    Seeing as he was one of the pioneers of Podcasting he has a thing or two to say about it.

  33. RyRoBa says:

    I just made a donation myself, and I encourage anyone who is, or has dreams of doing any sort of creative work online to hop on board as well. As a musician and photographer who does a lot of self releasing and publishing online, I can’t help but think that if this troll a-holes feel empowered to bully and weasel their way into podcasts, everything else will eventually be up for grabs……

    Uploading your tunes into bandcamp? hmm, maybe there’s a patent we can exploit to leech off that. Disseminating free MP3s or photos via your own website? Damn, I got to get a piece of that sweet action…

    These coward pigs are not just attacking an obscure technological advancement, they are trying to destroy modern creative freedom.

  34. dylan says:

    I don’t particularly like or even care about Adam really whatsoever, but I think it’s a bit irrelevant. He’s just the one who’s being sued and it’s really about the cause and how it affects the entire podcasting industry. It’s not like Adam chose to be the head of this cause either, I’m sure he would have gladly opted out of this entire situation altogether.

  35. Neal Babcock says:

    Yay!!!!!!! Bruce Gutter!!!!!!!!!!!

  36. Alexandr says:

    Agreeing with Bass. I was an enormous Carolla fan until he started getting as right-wing retardy as he got in about 2010. Once he started doing live shows with Dennis Prager it was all over. Whenever I give an episode an attempt due to a particular guest, he hits a particular anti-poor note that you can’t construe as anything but the selfish Fuck You Got Mine mentality. It’s impossible to listen to him anymore. He IS a decent guest on other podcasts, though, for the most part. And Chris certainly isn’t about to start up anything in the realms that infuriate me as a listener. Here’s hoping the patent troll asshole gets squashed, for freedom’s sake.

  37. Nanthy56 says:

    @christopher, I think you need to understand that copyright protects the expression of ideas of the mind (like songs and more artistic endeavours) whereas patents control methods of manufacturer that try to build on an existing technological base.

    Both are similar in their objective. Ie grant a creator/innovator a temporal restriction on where they can exploit that work for profit without someone ripping off your idea verbatim.

    Patent trolling is an area where the law has failed. But entering into a more digital landscape, law reform will occur, cases like this will set a precedent that it doesn’t happen again. The area of intellectual property is always changing, we have yet to strike a balance that is sufficient for this time, have some hope buddy

  38. Jack says:

    This is a huge problem, but the patent they’re using to sue could be invalidated as a result. That’s supposed to be the device used to keep frivolous patent suits down: any time you sue someone for infringement you risk having your own patent invalidated. Hopefully that will happen with this case and then they won’t be able to use it to sue more podcasts/online content providers. All the more reason to go all in on this, since it could stop any future problems.

  39. BassBone says:

    As much as I support Adam Carolla in this particular crusade against patent trolls, I really wish someone else could be the face of the cause. Adam Carolla is borderline racist, transphobic, homophobic and very misogynistic. He’s not a good face to put in front of anything.

  40. Gonzo says:

    This American Life did an excellent job delving into this subject – they explain why these companies incorporate in Texas, who these people are, and how problematic they can be. It’s worth a listen

  41. Christopher says:

    Yeah the problem is more with the foundation of the system then the trolls. The trolls are horrible but they’re just taking advantage of a broken system.

    Also in point to Hardwick asking why if you’re going for money you would go after Podcasters and not Adobe or Apple, that’s the point.

    Podcasters make money enough to essentially be extorted but not enough to have an army of Lawyers like a corporation.

    You sue Apple and you’re not getting your money ANY time soon and you’re spreading even more awareness to the fact that the system is broken, pretty much shutting down your whole scheme.

    You sue a guy with a handful of podcasts, he’s not going to have to legal backing or the outreach to retaliate to an extent that would scare them.

    Bottom line is the digital world needs to fall back into the domain of copyright and not patent. The patent umbrella is much broader and the proof of concept is much less and the switch from copyright to patent has done nothing but stifle the electronic industry… here’s your soapbox back sir.

  42. db says:

    yeah rickety cricket i was expecting John Lennon freal tho 500 woulda been perfect fo dat guest

  43. Arlo says:

    I’m on Adam Carolla’s side, but it would really help his cause if he and Chris Hardwick actually knew what they were talking about. Patent trolls are horrible, but you should be able to explain it better and talk about the other side of the problem which is patents getting handed out like Halloween candy. Even if Carolla wins, his problems might be fixed, but the larger issue will still exist.

  44. I was expecting Tom Lennon for the 500th! Ah, well.