Title: Elimination of anonymity in regard to liability for unlawful acts on the internet

Authors: Arnold Roosendaal

Addresses: Tilburg Institute for Law, Technology and Society (TILT), Tilburg University, The Netherlands

Abstract: The legal challenge of digital anonymity was the subject of the Dutch case Lycos v. Pessers. Pessers was a victim of defamation and decided to file a lawsuit against an anonymous opponent. The Supreme Court of the Netherlands had to decide whether anonymity should be eliminated or whether a possible right to anonymity should prevail. This paper describes the Dutch standpoint. It compares not only the European system, but also those of the USA and Canada and concludes with some proposals for legislation for better protection of anonymity as well as enabling victims to file a lawsuit.

Keywords: digital anonymity; unlawful acts; internet; liability; Dutch Supreme Court; Supreme Court decisions; The Netherlands; anonymous defamation.

DOI: 10.1504/IJTTC.2007.017805

International Journal of Technology Transfer and Commercialisation, 2007 Vol.6 No.2/3/4, pp.184 - 195

Published online: 16 Apr 2008 *

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