Law's second angle of vision

The July 2009 Scientific American Magazine* includes an article by Michael Tennesen examining the possible legal issues of virtual realities:
...as online communities conduct actual financial transactions and draw in more participants, some legal experts think that it may be time to extend brick-and-mortar jurisprudence into the virtual realm.
Examples of fraud, marital alienation, character and attributes theft, even murder are cited to have overflowed into the real world demanding courtroom adjudication. Tennesen supposes:
Courts could set precedents as cases arise from the virtual world. South Korean courts, for instance, have done so a number of times in dealing with virtual property; in contrast, U.S. courts have shied away from the issue. The scope of the online realm suggests that legislation may be desirable. Virtual commerce is worth about $1 billion annually and is set to get bigger...

Avatar Acts: Why Online Realities Need Regulation by Michael Tennesen
(July 2009 Scientific American Magazine, html)

*Scientific American Magazine is made available online over the course of each month.

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