November 25, 2008

Lawsuit filed over virtual world

A lawsuit before a federal court in New York is testing just how much jurisdiction U.S. courts have over the virtual world.

Richard Minsky, an artist and publisher who operates in Second Life, is suing an avatar, which is a representation of a real person, along with two directors of Linden Lab, owner of the virtual world, over use of the word SLART, the Daily Telegraph reported Tueday.

Minsky obtained a U.S. trademark in March 2008, but avatar Victor Vezina began an art gallery called SLart in Second Life in 2007.

In a 25-page complaint to the U.S. District Court of New York on March 16, 2008, Minsky's attorney, an avatar called Juris Amat, sent Vezina a cease and desist order that he failed to respond to, the newspaper said.