October 1, 2015
With Facebook, Sony and Samsung planning to release virtual reality headsets within the coming months, the space-age technology could soon become mainstream. Bringing virtual reality games to the consumer market also brings legal implications. Daily Journal turned to partner David E. Fink to examine the implications of reality games in the article, “Virtual Reality Set to Challenge Existing Laws”.
"For quite some time now, the technology has been way ahead of the law, that's an issue that gets discussed at nearly every single media or video game symposium I've gone to," Mr. Fink states. "The question here is, do we make new laws, or do we fit the new technologies into existing laws?"
Ownership, privacy and product liability are areas where virtual reality needs to differentiate itself from video game law, Mr. Fink explains. A class action suit against a game creator has already set precedent in the area of ownership. And while privacy issues are not unique to the virtual world, the potential for physical or emotional harm from using the headsets is. It’s not clear who would be held responsible should a simulation result in a negative experience, especially the type with long lasting effects that would warrant a lawsuit.