Media Law Prof Blog

Editor: Christine A. Corcos
Louisiana State Univ.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

The World Trade Organization and Online Games

Thomas Steiner, Swiss National Centre of Competence in Research, has published "Online Games Under WTO Law: Unresolved Classification Issues," as  NCCR Trade Regulation Working Paper No. 2009/3. Here is the abstract.

This paper explores the views of state and non-state actors on how to treat online games under WTO law. The author takes stock of the positions of WTO Members with a particular interest in the promotion of the online games industry on the one hand and in the protection and promotion of cultural diversity on the other. Moreover, the work examines the views expressed by a number of particularly well informed scholars. As a further contribution to the academic discourse, the author puts forward a view that considers the intrinsic characteristics of new-generation digital and online games. The thesis is that online games are complex products that do not seem to function as goods (anymore), but rather combine a piece of software with (audiovisual) content services.

Download the paper from SSRN here.

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