page highlights some of the more useful or provocative
government and private sector reports and other writings.
It covers -
of international initiatives for consumer protection in
the electronic marketplace is provided by the August 1999
report for the Global Information Infrastructure Commission
It is complemented by Consumers@shopping, the major
from the Consumers International organisation noted earlier
in this guide. It offers a detailed international comparative
study of electronic commerce that highlighted concerns
regarding service reliability, redress, ordering processes,
applicable law, cookies and other matters.
There is a broader view in International Perspectives
on Consumers' Access To Justice (Cambridge: Cambridge
Uni Press 2003) edited by Charles Rickett & Thomas
US perspectives on Consumer
Protection in the Global Electronic Marketplace were
provided by a major conference under the auspices of the
Federal Trade Commission.
The Advisory Committee on Online Access & Security
of the Federal Trade Commission (FTC)
on consumer access to information collected by commercial
websites and the security of that information.
John Goldring's paper
on Consumer Protection, The Nation State, Law, Globalisation
& Democracy is a useful starting point in thinking
about online consumer jurisdiction issues.
The 1995 address
by Larry Irving, US Asst Secretary for Communications
& Information, on Safeguarding Consumers Interests
in Cyberspace is less rigorous. Turn to Reinhard Schu's
1996 Masters dissertation
on Consumer Protection & Private International
Law in Internet Contracts instead.
Our governance guide
explores questions of jurisdiction, private law, arbitration
mechanisms and other aspects of international electronic
That guide points to resources such as the Global Internet
Project's 1999 paper
on Jurisdiction in Cyberspace.
We also recommend the Commonwealth Attorney-General's
on the proposed Hague Convention on Jurisdiction
& Foreign Judgements in Civil & Commercial Matters
international agreement applying to most private litigation.
As we noted earlier in this guide, such a convention is
more likely to get off the ground than the American Bar
cyberspace law project has called for a global commission
to set international rules regarding banking, consumer
protection, privacy, taxation, gambling and other online
The European Commission has announced a package
of Legislative Proposals for a new Regulatory Framework
for Electronic Communications, with directives on
telecommunications privacy, access and interconnection
For many people the most useful resource will be the
Commonwealth's recent Shopping Online: Facts For Consumers
Regrettably, the links to key Treasury Department publications
such as Building Consumer Sovereignty In Electronic
Commerce: A Best Practice Model have been dead
whenever we've visited.
The Australian Consumers' Association site offers information
The Australian Treasury Department has a small set of
to e-commerce and consumer affairs sites and documents,
in particular the 1998 Consumer Protection in Electronic
Commerce: Principles & Key Issues paper from
the National Advisory Council on Consumer Affairs and
the October 1999 Policy Framework for Consumer Protection
in Electronic Commerce.
The Australian Competition & Consumer Commission (ACCC)
published a fact
sheet on Where To Get Consumer Protection Advice.
The American Bar Association in 2002 established SafeShopping,
a website devoted to online consumer protection issues.
It subsequently developed an excellent site
exploring global jurisdiction issues.
The US Electronic Commerce & Consumer Protection Group
includes America Online, AT&T, Dell, IBM, Microsoft,
Network Solutions, and Time Warner.
In launching the group a spokesman indicated that "we
are proposing a model that can now be evaluated by all
companies doing business online, consumers, and governments
around the world," going on to describe its new guidelines
as a contribution to "an important global dialogue
on how to construct a set of global rules for a global
Simson Garfinkel's Database Nation: The Death of Privacy
in the 21st Century (O'Reilly: Sebastopol 2000) is
a study of consumer profiling, online marketing and other