New forms of social media and virtual communication are changing the ways in which we meet new people and develop meaningful relationships. In today's world, you can skype a long-distance significant other or join an Internet chat room to find others who share a similar interest. While, in many ways, the Internet has facilitated our ability to interact with others unencumbered by geographical location or time zone, its unfettered reach has proved to be problematic for one relationship in particular-the marital unit. Studies show that more marriages are ending because of "virtual infidelity," the term used to describe nonphysical behavior that adopts characteristics of a romantic relationship. This comment examines the cultural phenomenon of virtual infidelity against traditional divorce statutes, which only recognize physical infidelity as a fault-based ground for divorce. It ultimately advocates that the traditional definition of adultery be expanded to include "virtual adultery," spousal infidelity that rises to the level of legally actionable conduct, as a fault-based ground for divorce.
Kathryn Pfeiffer, Comment, Virtual Adultery: No Physical Harm, No Foul? 46 U. Rich. L. Rev. 667 (2012).