Legal aspects of the use of social media accounts: current state and perspectives
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This article analyzes the concept and legal nature of social media accounts to explore whether these can become the object of civil-law rights, particularly, an object of property or so-called virtual property rights. It examines the essence of a social media account and reveals the possibility of distinguishing specific elements in its structure. Some problems connected to social media accounts including liability for its content to the opportunity to purchase an account are investigated. The recent case law concerning business accounts is analyzed. The conclusion is made that every company should develop its own policy concerning social networks where all possible consequences connected with the rights in relation to social media accounts of the company would be specified, as there is no uniform court practice on this issue. The article also considers, whether it is possible to inherit a social media account. This takes into account approaches in various countries to the problem of determination of the post-mortem fate of digital assets, which shows a unified tendency to consider social media accounts as part of the estate transferred to the heir.
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