Virtual worlds are the latest manifestation of the internet's inexorable appetite for development. Organisations of all kinds are enthusiastically pursuing the commercial opportunities offered by the growth of this phenomenon. But if you believe that there are no laws which govern internet social networks and virtual worlds this book will persuade you otherwise. There is law, and a good deal of it. Why would there not be? As with many other aspects of the world wide web, this new medium is unregulated and offers many opportunities for companies to damage their reputation, run into a whole host of problems relating to intellectual property, trade marks and copyrights, and compromise the rights of individuals participating within the virtual environment. By reading The Law of Virtual Worlds and Internet Social Networks you will gain a good understanding of the legal issues which govern this expanding and fascinating world - are you ready for the leap from internet plaything to meaningful social and business tool? The Law of Virtual Worlds and Internet Social Networks is an essential reference for advertising and media agencies; television broadcast producers; academic institutions including university law, knowledge and information departments. In fact, it has been written for anyone interested in virtual worlds and social networks whether commercially because you want to explore the possibilities such environments present, or for academic curiosity.
Table of Contents
Contents: Introduction: the advent of the avatar; Entering into the virtual world and v-commerce contract formation; Legal terms and conditions governing participation in virtual worlds; The minimum content the law requires for virtual world and social network websites; Protecting and exploiting intellectual property rights in virtual worlds and social networks; Marketing, promotion and advertising of internet social networks and virtual worlds; Protecting personal privacy in virtual worlds and social networks; The Distance Selling Regulations and sales through virtual worlds; Agreements between virtual worlds or social networks and infrastructure providers; Strategic agreements between virtual worlds and aggregators of the service; Protecting corporate and individual reputations in virtual worlds and social networks; Disability discrimination considerations with virtual worlds and social networks; Employment law issues and employees' participation in a virtual world; Bibliography; Index.
Andrew Sparrow is a national award winning solicitor and founder of Lecote Solicitors, a niche commercial law firm concentrating on internet, IT and new media law. Andrew is the author of several books on commercial and internet law, including Music Distribution and the Internet (2006) and Film and Television Distribution and the Internet (2007), both of which are published by Gower. In a national poll conducted in 2004 and supported by the then Department of Trade & Industry he was acknowledged as one of 100 individuals in the UK who have contributed most to the development of the internet in the last ten years.
’As a national award-winning solicitor and founder of Lecote Solicitors, Andrew Sparrow is well qualified to author a book on raising awareness and explaining the complexity of laws in the sophisticated virtual and internet social network sphere. Considering the long-term future of these in civic, educational and health contexts (to name but a few), The Law of Virtual Worlds and Internet Social Networks is a timely publication...The Law of Virtual Worlds and Internet Social Networks is recommended for researchers in the field as well as practitioners wishing to take their services to the next level.’ - Ina Fourie, University of Pretoria, Online Information Review