Pitfalls of Virtual Property

Bartle, Richard


Publication information
The Themis Group white paper, April 2004.

Suggested citation
Bartle, Richard (2004). Pitfalls of Virtual Property. The Themis Group white paper, April 2004.

Available online at:

Abstract from the paper

This paper describes various pitfalls associated with the notion of real-world ownership of virtual property, taken from the perspective of a developer of virtual worlds. It makes no commentary on the positives of virtual property: rather, it assumes that the reader already regards the concept favourably or as inevitable, and is performing due diligence to discover the extent of any downside to it.

Five pitfalls are summarized in total, of which one is philosophical, two are law-related and two are concerned with gameplay.

Link no longer available

Link no longer available

Changed the link to point to

Changed the link to point to a copy on Bartle’s site.

Post new comment

The content of this field is kept private and will not be shown publicly.
  • Allowed HTML tags: <a> <em> <strong> <cite> <code> <ul> <ol> <li> <dl> <dt> <dd>
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.
More information about formatting options