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Copyright Law and Video Games: A Brief History of an Interactive Medium

Greg Lastowka

Rutgers School of Law

October 2013

Throughout their short history, video games have posed challenges to intellectual property laws. This chapter explores how courts in the United States have struggled to apply traditional laws of copyright to video games given that video games, like all games, are interactive processes. Players of video games both experience the games and perform them during the course of play. From the perspective of copyright law, the interactive nature of video games undermines the authorial control of the game creator, who does not created a single scripted experience, but instead designs an interactive system. This interactivity opens another copyright possibility: an authorial role for players.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 32

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Date posted: September 7, 2013 ; Last revised: October 4, 2013

Suggested Citation

Lastowka, Greg, Copyright Law and Video Games: A Brief History of an Interactive Medium (October 2013). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2321424 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2321424

Contact Information

Greg Lastowka (Contact Author)
Rutgers School of Law ( email )
United States
HOME PAGE: http://lastowka.rutgers.edu
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