Tuesday, June 5, 2007

Specific Jurisdiction in a Virtual World

Bragg v. Linden Research, most interesting for its property-law implications, presents a straightforward TJ issue in an interesting context.  The case involved a plaintiff's claim that the owner of a role-playing game, Second Life, unlawfully confiscated his virtual property and denied him access to the virtual world.  According to the court, "while the property and the world where it is found are 'virtual', the dispute is real."  Ultimately, the court rejected the owner's challenge and exercised specific jurisdiction, concluding that "the owner's representations-which were made as part of a national campaign to induce persons, including Bragg, to visit Second Life and purchase virtual property-constitute sufficient contacts to exercise specific personal jurisdiction over Rosedale" and that the exercise of jurisdiction did not offend traditional notions of fair play and substantial justice.    Thanks to Rick Bales of the Workplace Prof Blog for the heads up. --RR



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