This chapter provides an overview of the intersection between international law and feminism. It predominantly discusses scholarly writing, but also some major documents and institutions. The material first emphasizes how feminism has developed within various international law subfields. Then it focuses on a major offshoot from traditional international legal jurisprudence known as Third World Approaches to International Law (TWAIL). Next, the chapter shows how an international law focus strengthens and broadens traditionally US-oriented feminist legal theory. The related field of comparative law, involving the law of one country or several countries, is briefly covered. The next and major section then highlights Critical Race Feminism, an emphasis on women of color, an area that intersects with every area previously reviewed. The conclusion notes the work that remains to be done.
Comparing the Approaches of Judaism, Christianity and Islam
Mervyn K. Lewis and Ahmad Kaleem
Edited by Robin West and Cynthia G. Bowman
Irem Çağlar and Berna Akçali Gür
Gender-based violence is recognized as a type of discrimination in international human rights law. However, the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR)did not establish a connection between the prohibition of discrimination in securing rights under the European Convention on Human Rights and gender-based violence until 2009. This approach changed with the court’s landmark Opuz decision. In Opuz, the court adopted a feminist interpretation of the due diligence standard. This interpretation fundamentally challenged the traditional understanding of state responsibility for human rights violations in the ‘private sphere.’ Accordingly, member states are now responsible not only for their own actions but also for their lack of due diligence in their failures to prevent or respond to gender-based violence and take reasonable steps to prevent it. Although the ECtHR still fails to acknowledge gender-based violence as a type of discrimination in some cases, this chapter suggests that the Opuz decision constitutes a milestone.
S.J. Blodgett-Ford, Woodrow Barfield and Alexander Williams
Virtual and augmented reality can be used to project advertisements in the real or virtual world. This chapter discusses case law, statutes, and regulations that apply to advertising in virtual and augmented reality as well as the possible evolution of the current law due to new challenges. Particular issues of interest include the Lanham Act, nuisance law, virtual trespass, right of publicity, and copyright.
Marc Jonathan Blitz
Free speech protection is not absolute. Even as it protects individuals’ rights to speak to each other in public spaces, it leaves government with room to assure these public spaces are suitable for shared activities: It lets officials regulate, for example, to assure the free flow of traffic or protect against “visual blight.” Virtual and augmented reality have the potential to alter this aspect of free speech law by enabling individuals to “privatize” public space: Signs, art work, or other expression that may have once been forced on unwilling audiences might now instead emerge only in the custom-designed VR or AR world of a willing viewer. This chapter looks more closely at this First Amendment implications of VR and AR, and also at the reasons that some VR or AR images and words may still be subject to government regulation, either because they do not count as First Amendment “speech” or because they count as speech which government has power to regulate.
This chapter presents the crime of virtual reality hacking and suggests that it challenges the inherently flawed legal doctrine governing unauthorized access to computers and data. Thirty years ago, lawmakers in countries all over the world enacted new and specialized computer misuse legislation, acting on the notion that existing criminal law is insufficient to the task of prosecuting and resolving computer hacking cases. Unfortunately, the resulting unauthorized access regime has created significant problems. One is the potential criminalization of everyday technological behavior, brought about by an overly extensive normative scope; another is chronic underenforcement; and yet another is a wider chilling effect on creativity and digital freedoms. Lately, interest in virtual reality, a fairly old concept, has reawakened. Unlike other information technologies, virtual reality is built to deliver a psychological effect believably simulating the physical world; it possesses three-dimensional spatial characteristics, infuses users with real legal expectations, and mirrors human social institutions and values. Many actions within virtual reality, lawful and criminal, are subjectively and conceptually closer to physical acts than to user actions in cyberspace. Consequently, considering some forms of virtual reality intrusion may warrant reverting back to the ancient common law doctrines of burglary and trespass as an alternative to the severely flawed modern computer misuse laws.
Virtual worlds are created by computer code that generates each aspect of the virtual environment, which includes the visual scene, the 3D spatialized sound presented to the user, and the tactile and force feedback that the user may experience interacting with virtual objects. Criminal offenses may be committed in any environment, including real, virtual, or augmented. From a criminal law perspective, when considering a human offender immersed within a virtual environment and performing criminal activities, the nature of the virtual environment may not be a major factor considered by the court; instead, the law will generally focus on the offender’s understanding of what can be termed the physical reality of the crime (which consists of what is true about the physical world and the person’s beliefs about the physical world); that is, the “real” reality associated with the offense, and not the virtual reality associated with the offense. When the virtual or augmented reality experienced by the user is different than the physical reality in a certain level of detail, the question of criminal liability then focuses on the offender’s belief which is the basis for determining the offender’s fault. Most legal systems around the world prefer using the offender’s belief as the basis for fault rather than what actually happened (that is, the factual reality of the crime). To legal actors in these jurisdictions, it seems more just and fair to impose criminal liability on the basis of the offender’s subjective view of reality. This is, in short, for the factual mistake doctrine (“mistake of fact”): we prefer the offender’s factual mistake (subjective) rather than the factual situation (objective) that actually occurred as the basis for the offender’s fault. This chapter discusses the above concepts in the context of offenses occurring in virtual reality.
S.J. Blodgett-Ford and Mirjam Supponen
This chapter discusses US and European data privacy and data protection case law, statutes, and regulations (including the General Data Protection Regulation) that apply to advertising in virtual and augmented reality, as well as the possible evolution of the current laws due to new challenges.