The Five Indicia of Virtual Property
University of New Hampshire School of Law (formerly Franklin Pierce Law Center)
Pierce Law Review, Vol. 5, p. 137, 2006
Building on the analysis of Professor Joshua Fairfield, from his seminal article titled Virtual Property, this note proposes five indicia, common to most forms of virtual property, which a court should use to identify legally protectable virtual property interests on the Internet. These indicia are: (1) rivalry; (2) persistence; (3) interconnectivity; (4) secondary markets; and (5) value-added-by-users. This note cautions, however, against applying this framework indiscriminately against the interests of the very entities without whom the property would not exist. The ultimate purpose of virtual property jurisprudence should be to strike a balance that provides legal redress to users whose legitimate property interests have been violated while simultaneously reducing liability and disincentives to service providers who promote and sustain the growth of the Internet.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 25Accepted Paper Series
Date posted: February 14, 2007
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