The California Challenge

How (not) to regulate disruptive business models by Steven Hill

The historical convergence of ever more sophisticated smart phones, wireless high speed internet and Big Data (also known as »the cloud«) is changing the social and economic landscape in dramatic ways.

Recent attempts by governments to regulate these companies provide examples of why poorly designed legislation that fails to comprehend the different nature of these companies will inevitably result in regulatory failure. In particular, the widely distributed workforce and anonymous nature of the commercial transactions that occur on these platforms make it all the more crucial that governments have access to the data of the commercial transactions that will make effective regulation possible. Rather than providing the data, these companies have plowed significant resources into sophisticated political and legal operations to resist regulatory attempts.

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