May 022010
 May 2, 2010  Posted by  Laws, Online, Surveillance

Larry Downes writes:

I write in “The Laws of Disruption” of the risk of unintended consequences that regulators run in legislating emerging technologies.  Because the pace of change for these technologies is so much faster than it is for law, the likelihood of defining a legal problem and crafting a solution that will address it is very slim.  I give several examples in the book of regulatory actions that quickly become not just obsolete but, worse, wind up having the opposite result to what regulators intended.

An unfortunate example of that problem in the news quite a bit lately is the Electronic Communications Privacy Act or ECPA.

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