Table of Contents

Research Handbook on Governance of the Internet

Research Handbook on Governance of the Internet

Elgar original reference

Edited by Ian Brown

The internet is now a key part of everyday life across the developed world, and growing rapidly across developing countries. This Handbook provides a comprehensive overview of the latest research on internet governance, written by the leading scholars in the field.

Chapter 16: The new intermediation: contract, identity, and the future of internet governance

Andrea Matwyshyn

Subjects: innovation and technology, technology and ict, law - academic, intellectual property law, internet and technology law, regulation and governance, politics and public policy, regulation and governance


From early in the existence of the internet, users’ interactions have been mediated by third parties – intermediaries. But, just as internet content has evolved over time, so too has the role of intermediaries. Three trends in intermediation in particular are impacting the future of internet governance: invisibility, blended virtual-real space intermediation, and digital identity intermediation. The future of internet governance depends in part on recognizing these trends and generating a consensus on fairness in intermediary commercial conduct. In particular, we must consider the role of contract law as a tool of governance and user identity intermediation.

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