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Society & Culture
Virtual Legality Episode 162

TOO BROAD: How a Recent Holding On Civil Rights (and Runescape) Got Misreported

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1y Jan 27, 2020
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When Amro Elansari was muted while playing the massively multiplayer online role-playing game (MMO) Runescape, he decided to sue Runescape's developer Jagex.

But while his complaints were dismissed easily enough (you can't bring a 1st Amendment claim against private actors, among other things), the way such dismissal was reported gave too much precedential power to what was otherwise a rather unremarkable legal skirmish.

What happened in the case? What was it about?

And why is it inaccurate to say, without qualification, that 'being 'muted' in a game does not violate your civil rights'?

We try to stick to the holdings...in Virtual Legality.

#Runescape #CivilRights #Journalism


Discussed in this episode:

"Being 'muted' in a game does not violate your civil rights, US federal court declares"
PC Gamer - January 24, 2020 - Andy Chalk
https://www.pcgamer.com/being-muted-in-a-game-does-not-violate-your-civil-rights-us-federal-court-declares/

"Federal court: Getting muted in RuneScape doesn’t violate your civil rights"
Polygon - January 25, 2020 - Owen S. Good
https://www.polygon.com/2020/1/25/21081497/runescape-sued-civil-rights-violation-muted-jagex-federal-court-appeals-pennsylvania

"Elansari v Jagex Inc." (Appeal; Third Circuit)
January 22, 2020
https://law.justia.com/cases/federal/appellate-courts/ca3/19-2696/19-2696-2020-01-22.html

"Prohibition against discrimination or segregation in places of public accommodation"
42 USC 2000a
https://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/42/2000a

"Gamer Files Lawsuit Claiming Muting Violated His Human Rights, Loses Badly"
VICE - January 24, 2020 - Matthew Gault
https://www.vice.com/en_us/article/y3mp9j/gamer-files-lawsuit-claiming-muting-violated-his-human-rights-loses-badly

"Okay, so plaintiff here seems a little nuts, but it’s worth pointing out..."
Tweet - January 24, 2020 - Hoeg Law
https://twitter.com/HoegLaw/status/1220864267911602176


PODCAST VERSIONS AVAILABLE AT

Spotify:
(https://open.spotify.com/show/3qsDhQ7h6BR2wLyNQYDWB4)

iTunes:
(https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/virtual-legality/id1448785539?mt=2)

SoundCloud:
(https://soundcloud.com/user-510342404)

Google Play Music:
(https://play.google.com/music/listen#/ps/In3d7qersx72lvzehxo7gu6cd5u)


"Virtual Legality" is a continuing series discussing the law, video games, software, and everything digital, hosted by Richard Hoeg, of the Hoeg Law Business Law Firm (Hoeg Law).

Rick has practiced for more than a decade at some of the country's largest law firms, representing IT, software, video game, and other technology companies, as well as the individuals and institutions which fund them.

DISCUSSION IS PROVIDED FOR INFORMATIONAL PURPOSES ONLY AND IS NOT TO BE CONSTRUED AS LEGAL ADVICE. INDIVIDUALS INTERESTED IN THE LEGAL TOPICS DISCUSSED IN THIS VIDEO SHOULD CONSULT WITH THEIR OWN COUNSEL.

Any and all feedback is appreciated. Let us know what you think!


Blog, "Rules of the Game", at https://hoeglaw.wordpress.com/

About Hoeg Law

The Hoeg Law Firm is a business law firm with big law experience and a small firm approach focusing on start-ups, technology, financing, and everything else a business might need.


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