Citations (27)



Law and Borders - The Rise of Law in Cyberspace

David R. Johnson

New York Law School

David G. Post

Temple University School of Law

Stanford Law Review, Vol. 48, p. 1367, 1996

Global computer-based communications cut across territorial borders, creating a new realm of human activity and undermining the feasibility--and legitimacy--of applying laws based on geographic boundaries. While these electronic communications play havoc with geographic boundaries, a new boundary, made up of the screens and passwords that separate the virtual world from the real world of atoms, emerges. This new boundary defines a distinct Cyberspace that needs and can create new law and legal institutions of its own. Territorially-based law-making and law-enforcing authorities find this new environment deeply threatening. But established territorial authorities may yet learn to defer to the self-regulatory efforts of Cyberspace participants who care most deeply about this new digital trade in ideas, information, and services. Separated from doctrine tied to territorial jurisdictions, new rules will emerge, in a variety of on-line spaces, to govern a wide range of new phenomena that have no clear parallel in the nonvirtual world. These new rules will play the role of law by defining legal personhood and property, resolving disputes, and crystallizing a collective conversation about core values.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 37

Keywords: Internet, Cyberspace, regulation

JEL Classification: K33, K39, K10

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Date posted: February 1, 1997  

Suggested Citation

Johnson, David R. and Post, David G., Law and Borders - The Rise of Law in Cyberspace. Stanford Law Review, Vol. 48, p. 1367, 1996. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=535 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.535

Contact Information

David Reynold Johnson (Contact Author)
New York Law School ( email )
3650 Appleton Street, N.W.
Washington, DC 20008
United States
David G. Post
Temple University School of Law ( email )
1719 N. Broad Street
Philadelphia, PA 19122
United States
215-204-4539 or (202)364-5010 (Phone)
215-204-1185 (Fax)
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