The philosophy of law in an information society

Authored by: Ugo Pagallo , Massimo Durante

The Routledge Handbook of Philosophy of Information

Print publication date:  June  2016
Online publication date:  June  2016

Print ISBN: 9781138796935
eBook ISBN: 9781315757544
Adobe ISBN: 9781317633495


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Today’s information revolution is affecting our understanding about the world and about ourselves: we are interconnected informational organisms that share with biological entities and engineered artefacts ‘a global environment ultimately made of information’, that is, what Luciano Floridi calls ‘the infosphere’ (Floridi 2014). A crucial feature of this new environment is illustrated by how the information revolution is transforming principles and concepts of the law, much as the approach of experts to legal information. Consider how technological innovation continuously forces lawmakers to intervene, by adding norms for the regulation of new circumstances and new crimes, such as computer crimes (e.g. identity theft). Likewise, reflect on traditional rights such as copyright and privacy, both turned into a matter of access to, and control and protection of, information in digital environments. Accordingly, the law could be regarded today as that crucial part of the infosphere in which the rights and duties of the individual – as much as the sovereign powers of nation states, or matters of deliberation, representation, accountability, etc. – can be conveniently understood as ‘ultimately made of information’.

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