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Second Life News - TOS Not Binding

Posted by Keith Cross on Jun 01, 2007  | 34 comments in our forums

Reuters has reported on a court case where a Pennsylvania judge has ruled against Linden Labs that the Second Life's Terms of Service are not legally binding.

SECOND LIFE, May 31 (Reuters) - A Pennsylvania judge has ruled that Linden Lab's terms of service for Second Life residents are not legally binding, according to court papers filed on Wednesday.

The ruling came in the case of Bragg v. Linden Research. Marc Bragg, a lawyer from West Chester, Pa., filed suit in 2006 claiming that Linden unfairly terminated his account, causing the loss of his virtual business venture. Linden filed motions to dismiss the suit and compel Bragg to arbitrate his claim out of court, consistent with Linden's Terms of Service.

Judge Eduardo Robreno ruled on May 30 that Linden's Terms of Service constitute a "contract of adhesion", allowing the suit to proceed.

"Linden presents the TOS on a take-it-or-leave-it basis," he wrote. "In effect, the TOS provide Linden with a variety of one-sided remedies to resolve disputes, while forcing its customers to arbitrate any disputes with Linden."

"The arbitration clause is not designed to provide Second Life participants an effective means of resolving disputes with Linden. Rather, it is a one-sided means which tilts unfairly, in almost all cases, in Linden's favor," Robreno added.

Read the article here.

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