Not long ago, in a galaxy eerily close to this one, legal pundits predicted that the fanciful realm of online “virtual world” gaming would come crashing into the harsh reality of earthly litigation. That day has finally arrived in the case of Bragg v. Linden Research, Inc., et al., 2007 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 39516 (E.D., Pa., May 30, 2007), serving up a lesson in civil procedure to an attorney with an avatar attempting to avoid arbitration over virtual property rights.

The facts of Bragg are straightforward. Plaintiff, Marc Bragg, an attorney based in West Chester, PA, is a “virtual world” hobbyist whose game of choice was Second Life, created by the defendants, Linden Research, Inc. and its founder, Philip Rosedale.