University of Toronto Symposium – Video Gaming: Technical, Social and Legal Dimensions

The first video gaming research symposium at the University of Toronto will be taking place as follows:

Tuesday May 13th 2008
8 am – 4 pm

40 St. George Street
Bahen Centre for Information and Technology
University of Toronto
Room 1190

Video gaming incorporates and impacts cutting edge research in the fields of computer science, engineering, sociology, management and law. We are delighted to present a broad array of research projects that are representative of the breadth of work underway at the University of Toronto.

The presentations will focus on the technical aspects of video game design and then consider the social and legal aspects of game playing.

Industry leaders and other academic institutions will also be in attending and will highlight their areas of expertise in the gaming world as part of the networking fair.

This session in particular may be of interest:

2:50 – 3:10 p.m.
Virtual Property, Real Law: The Regulation of Property in Video Games and Preparing for the Virtual Apocalypse: Managing business risks in virtual worlds
Susan Abramovitch
Faculty of Law, University of Toronto
Gowling Lafleur Henderson LLP

I note video games and virtual worlds are terms being used interchangeably.


  1. Susan Abramovitch gave what is probably the same presentation at a Canadian Institute session on IT law last week – it was very well done.

    I think however it is unfortunate to merge virtual worlds and video games (not that they are ‘video’ in the same sense as a few years ago, either) – though I am a bit pressed to define the distinction, and the legal issues overlap largely. Maybe the only real distinction is the classes of issues that one is more or less likely to encounter in one domain than the other. More defamation in VW? Same amount of property creation? (subject to the big advantage that Second Life has in its permission to create and own property, compared to the stated rules of many VGs and even VWs) To date the US has spotted a risk of terrorism only in VW (SFAIK).