In the 1980s, people played Atari; in the ‘90s, it was PlayStation. Although the game industry has driven the development of increasingly sophisticated online spaces, “virtual worlds” are about much more than play. An estimated 15 million people spend time inside these synthetic, online universes and the number is growing. They use them for everything from running global businesses to conducting distance education to socializing with friends from around the world. The technology that began as a place for play is giving rise to diverse online societies.
As ever-increasing social activity takes place inside virtual worlds, however, the question of which laws should apply becomes urgent and obvious. The second volume in NYU Press’s Ex Machina: Law, Technology and Society series, THE STATE OF PLAY: Law, Games, and Virtual Worlds (November 28, 2006; $24.00 paper / 0-8147-9972-8; $70.00 cloth / 0-8147-9971-X), seeks to address the role of law in videogames and virtual worlds.
Jack Balkin and Beth Noveck bring together the leading voices on virtual worlds to address how the law will both promote as well as hinder the evolution of online life. Should virtual worlds be fully integrated into our current, “real world” legal system or do virtual worlds need their own laws, if any at all? How should online economies, currencies and trading systems be classified? If these are global online spaces, whose rules should apply? What kinds of torts and crimes will the law recognize in virtual worlds? Do virtual world participants have rights? Or are game operators entitled to censor speech and confiscate virtual property?
How do we distinguish among different kinds of virtual worlds, some of which are games and intended for fun and not commerce? This path-breaking collection on law and virtual worlds explores how new online societies are challenging our traditional assumptions about the rule of law.
Jack M. Balkin is Knight Professor of Constitutional Law and the First Amendment at Yale Law School, where he directs Yale’s Information Society Project. His books include What Brown v. Board of Education Should Have Said (2001) and What Roe v. Wade Should Have Said (2005), both published by NYU Press.
Beth Simone Noveck is Associate Professor of Law at New York Law School, where she directs the Institute for Information Law and Policy and the Democracy Design Workshop. She is the creator of the State of Play conferences on law, games, and virtual worlds.
THE STATE OF PLAY Law, Games, and Virtual Worlds Edited by Jack M. Balkin and Beth Simone Noveck November 28, 2006 $24.00 paper / 0-8147-9972-8 $70.00 cloth / 0-8147-9971-X
For more information, please contact Sarah Rosenbloom at 212-992-9991 or email@example.com
State Laws Vary on Polling Place Photography: A 50 state guide to taking pictures/video at te polls:
Can you photograph or video your vote inside the polling station- either a paper ballot or electronic screen? Can you photograph or video yourself voting inside the polling station? Can you photograph or video others voting or the working of the polling station from within it? Can you photograph or video the polling station from outside it? Can you photograph or video people leaving the voting station? Can you ask people questions leaving the polling station and can you video or blog their answers?
Baidu.com (BIDU), the largest Chinese Internet search engine service provider in China, plans to launch a free law search service today.
Baidu says the law search service will bring netizens and special legal information closer together.
All the data in Baidu's law search is provided by Chinalawinfo
Company and edited by legal experts from Peking University Law School.
The database covers laws, regulations, legal articles and judicial
interpretations since the founding of the People's Republic of China in
1949. Baidu says it will update the content index daily to ensure the content's validity.