Personal jurisdiction is an issue for those who post websites because it gives the courts jurisdiction in forum states the right to pursue legal action against them. To determine if the court has personal jurisdiction over a website the court must prove that the website has had continued contact with those brining on the suit in the forum state. If it is determined that such action has taken place then the court may proceed. This would bring great concern to website owners, as the reach of the Internet seems to be never ending, they could face legal proceedings in several different jurisdictions that they have had contact with customers in. This makes their business vulnerable to law suits and website owners apprehensive in their publications.
To take a look at a website I studied my own ...view middle of the document...
” (Wolf, 1999) This tells me that I can be held liable under the courts jurisdiction should issues arise.
According to Wolf’s Article courts use an “interactive-passive” distinction to determine personal jurisdiction in most Internet cases. Interactive refers to websites that have two-way communication and establishes ongoing business relationships, i.e. most shopping websites like www.walmart.com or www.amazon.com. Passive on the other hand refers to websites that are merely informative and don’t establish regular contact with users. There is however a fine line between the two and several sites fall in the middle. There is no perfect black and white process for determining where a website may fall, most must be approached and judged on a case-by-case basis. Furthermore, Wolf states that courts don’t claim personal jurisdiction over websites that are strictly advertising.
Long arm jurisdiction would become an issue for those that create or post web pages because once minimum contacts are verified it allows the courts to move forward and pursue personal jurisdiction over the defendant even though they could be out of state and non-consenting. This is something not uncommon as website’s reach the masses and they are created/owned in one location making long arm jurisdiction an issue for website owners. (Wikipedia, n.d.)
Wolf, C. (1999). Standards for Internet Jurisdiciton, Retrieved August 20, 2011 from: http://library.findlaw.com/1999/Jan/1/241482.html
Long Arm Jurisdiction (n.d.) Retrieved August 20, 2011 From Wikipedia website: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Long_arm_jurisdiction