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Digital Law Journal

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The purpose of the Digital Law Journal is to provide a theoretical understanding of the issues that arise in Law and Economics in the digital environment, as well as to create a platform for finding the most suitable version of their legal regulation.

This aim is especially vital for the Russian legal community, following the development of the digital economy in our country. The rest of the world has faced the same challenge, more or less successfully; an extensive practice of digital economy regulation has been developed, which provides good material for conducting comparative research on this issue.

Theoretically, "Digital Law" is based on "Internet Law", formed in English-language scientific literature, which a number of researchers consider as a separate branch of Law.

The journal establishes the following objectives:

  • Publication of research in the field of digital law and digital economy in order to intensify international scientific interaction and cooperation within the scientific community of experts.
  • Meeting the information needs of professional specialists, government officials, representatives of public associations, and other citizens and organizations; this concerns assessment (scientific and legal) of modern approaches to the legal regulation of the digital economy.
  • Dissemination of the achievements of current legal and economic science, and the improvement of professional relationships and scientific cooperative interaction between researchers and research groups in both Russia and foreign countries.

The journal publishes articles in the following fields of developments and challenges facing legal regulation of the digital economy:

  1. Legal provision of information security, and the formation of a unified digital environment of trust (identification of subjects in the digital space, legally significant information exchange, etc.).
  2. Regulatory support for electronic civil turnover; comprehensive legal research of data in the context of digital technology development, including personal data, public data, and "Big Data".
  3. Legal support for data collection, storage, and processing.
  4. Regulatory support for the introduction and use of innovative technologies in the financial market (cryptocurrencies, blockchain, etc.).
  5. Regulatory incentives for the improvement of the digital economy; legal regulation of contractual relations arising in connection with the development of digital technologies; network contracts (smart contracts); legal regulation of E-Commerce.
  6. The formation of legal conditions in the field of legal proceedings and notaries according to the development of the digital economy.
  7. Legal provision of digital interaction between the private sector and the state; a definition of the "digital objects" of taxation and legal regime development for the taxation of business activities in the field of digital technologies; a digital budget; a comprehensive study of the legal conditions for using the results of intellectual activity in the digital economy; and digital economy and antitrust regulation.
  8. Legal regulation of the digital economy in the context of integration processes.
  9. Comprehensive research of legal and ethical aspects related to the development and application of artificial intelligence and robotics systems.
  10. Changing approaches to training and retraining of legal personnel in the context of digital technology development; new requirements for the skills of lawyers.

The subject of the journal corresponds to the group of specialties "Legal Sciences" 12.00.00 and "Economic Sciences" 08.00.00 according to the HAC nomenclature.

The journal publishes articles in Russian and English.

The journal will publish quarterly, thereby releasing 4 issues per year.

Current issue

Vol 2, No 3 (2021)
View or download the full issue PDF (Russian)

INTERVIEW 

8-22 418
Abstract

Currently, general digitalization has not spared the sphere of arbitration. What are the advantages and disadvantages of introducing digital technologies, how has COVID-19 influenced the work of leading arbitration institutions, does digitalization imply the delocalization of ICA, and does a “digital arbitrator” have a future? Alexey A. Kostin and Alexander V. Grebelsky answered these and other questions from Maxim I. Inozemtsev, Editor-in-Chief of the Digital Law Journal.

ESSAYS 

23-45 168
Abstract

The COVID-19 pandemic has deeply influenced people’s way of life. The need to comply with various social restrictions has posed new and previously unknown challenges to humanity. Internet here plays a significant role in helping to maintain people’s life as usual. As online behavior increases, many disputes arise therefrom grow simultaneously. It is proposed that international online disputes would be solved effectively if Internet technologies were referred to and adopted. Therefore, online litigation, a judicial method specially established to solve online disputes, provides an ideal alternative to the traditional litigation process in this regard. Such litigation can be operated through Internet courts (or cyber courts). Today the palm in their establishment belongs to China that has successfully introduce the world’s first three, and only, Internet courts. Thus, the Chinese experience has been chosen as the primary empirical support of the study on Internet courts. In this essay, a detailed review of the online litigation process will be analyzed using the example of the adopted rules and regulations for resolving disputes, as well as the judgements handed down by the Hangzhou Internet Court, the world’s first cyber court successfully resolving multiple online disputes over four years. The essay firstly reviews the current rules and procedures of Hangzhou Internet court; this would serve for a better understanding of how the world’s first Internet court is operated. After that, the essay discusses in what circumstances foreign courts can recognize and enforce Internet courts’ judgments. The essay ends up with giving personal recommendations on the future development of Internet courts to solve online consumer contract disputes.

46-54 492
Abstract

Technical methods of intellectual property protection are reviewed and combined in the essay in the discourse of historical development — from man-made signatures of Renaissance artists to non-fungible tokens (NFT). The proliferation of NFTs is analyzed from the point of view of the commercial law: NFTs are discussed as objects that simultaneously have the characteristics of independence and a derivative nature in relation to intellectual property being the underlying digital asset. The self-sufficiency of NFTs as legal objects is provided by their commodity properties, which arise not only from the value of the underlying asset, but from the phenomenon of crystallization of the unique fixed version of the asset in a non-interchangeable and irreproducible token. The derivative nature of NFTs, figuratively correlated with the derivative contracts in financial markets, is manifested in the symbolization of intellectual property as an underlying asset and the loss (in full or in part) of its usual significance for a potential acquirer when placed in an NFT-image. Despite the variety and a specific evolution of legal approaches to the understanding of intellectual property, we can state a long-standing conceptual rejection by legal scholars from the simplest proprietary theories of transferring real rights constructions to intellectual property. However, some absolute property features of the NFTs, ensuring both internal and external legal aspects of the property, raise the question of a new legal life of “proprietarism” in the conditions of digitalization and information capitalism.

ARTICLES 

55-70 119
Abstract

The expression of opinions on the Internet has a number of features in comparison with traditional means of information dissemination. Firstly, imposition of classical measures of legal liability can be difficult due to the peculiarities of cyber space: anonymity and erasure of jurisdictional boundaries. In this regard, a new mechanism of restrictions has appeared, which consists in the withdrawal of information that violates the law or the rights of other citizens from the Internet at the direction of state bodies. The trends in this area are the predominance of the administrative procedure for making decisions on the withdrawal of information from public access, and the use of vague and evaluative terms as grounds for restrictions. Secondly, in most cases, in the process of realizing freedom of speech, intermediaries are involved — companies that provide a public forum for millions of users. The activities of these companies are also associated with new mechanisms for restricting freedom of speech: from blocking content to deleting users’ accounts. Such companies have a dual responsibility: to monitor the placement of content in order to prevent abuse of freedom of speech and to prevent violations of freedom of expression with their own corporate rules. The purpose of this article is to identify, through the method of analytical jurisprudence, the problems that arise when restricting freedom of speech, implemented in the digital environment, and to establish the reasons for their occurrence. To do this, the author has carried out a review of Russian legislation and the practice of its application, as well as the practice of restrictions, applied by corporations, and an analysis of foreign literature.

BOOK REVIEWS 

News

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