Online Dispute Resolution: Scope and Matters Arising
21 Pages Posted: 12 Apr 2015
Date Written: December 24, 2014
With commercial transaction now making wave in the cyberspace, online dispute becomes inevitable. This has led to the evolution of Online Dispute Resolution (ODR). Since its emergence, ODR has shown itself capable of resolving online disputes especially with regards electronic commerce (e-commerce). Just like traditional ADR, ODR makes use of ADR mechanisms such as arbitration, mediation and negotiation. The only difference is that these ADR mechanisms are employed online. One area of ODR that has won the attraction of international organizations and private institutions is online arbitration. Online arbitration has mostly been used to resolve both online and offline disputes. Resolving disputes via online arbitration is similar to traditional arbitration except that disputes are resolved using various technological devices such as video-conference, e-mail, chats and electronic signature (e-signature). The ODR process has been hailed for its simplicity, speed, convenience and been least expensive when compared with traditional ADR and litigation. On the other hand, the process has been criticized as lacking face to face encounter, having security and confidentiality issues, problems with e-arbitration agreements and awards amongst many others. The good news is that most of these challenges are solvable thus, establishing ODR as a viable online equivalent of alternative dispute resolution.
Keywords: Online Dispute Resolution (ODR), Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR), e-commerce, Internet, Cyberspace, Online Arbitration, Arbitration, Mediation and Negotiation.
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