The Role of Internet Intermediaries in Advancing Public Policy Objectives Forging Partnerships for Advancing Policy Objectives for the Internet Economy, Part II
93 Pages Posted: 2 Jul 2011
Date Written: June 22, 2011
The Declaration on The Future of the Internet Economy, adopted at the OECD meeting at Ministerial level in Seoul in 2008, invited the OECD to: examine “the role of various actors, including intermediaries, in meeting policy goals for the Internet economy in areas such as combating threats to the security and stability of the internet, enabling cross-border exchange, and broadening access to information.” In response, the OECD’s Committee for Information, Computer and Communications Policy (ICCP) undertook a broad project to gain a more comprehensive view of Internet intermediaries, their economic and social functions, development and prospects, benefits and costs, and roles and responsibilities as part of its programme of work.
The first part of the project (The Economic and Social Role of Internet Intermediaries) developed a common definition and understanding of what Internet intermediaries are, of their economic function and economic models, and discussed market developments and the economic and social uses that these actors satisfy.
The present report (The Role of Internet Intermediaries in Advancing Public Policy Objectives) is the second part of the project. It examines the roles and responsibilities of Internet intermediaries in advancing public policy objectives, as well as the costs and benefits of their involvement. After introducing how intermediaries could take on a policy role through responses to legal requirements; through industry self-regulation; and through their business practices, this report takes an issue-based approach to evaluate possible involvement of Internet intermediaries in helping to advance specific policy objectives. Case studies look at the free flow of information, reinforcing cyber-security, combating illegal content and child inappropriate content, deterring illegal online gambling, ensuring respect of copyrights and trademarks, and protecting consumers in e-commerce transactions.
Lilian Edwards contributed extensively to the chapter on legal issues in the second report, drawing on work from her chapter on online intermediary liability in Edwards and Waelde eds Law and the Internet (Hart, 2009). No claim is made to the rest of the report, or its conclusions, which belong to the OECD.
Keywords: online intermediaries, ISPs, liability, law, copyright, privacy, security, consumer fraud, obsenity
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation