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Smart(er) Internet Regulation Through Cost-Benefit Analysis

Winston J. Maxwell

Presenting the variables of the cost-benefit equation

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Extrait du texte


As noted in Chapter 1, this book presents a methodology for evaluating regulatory measures relating to content policies. The methodology involves several variables, which I present briefly in this chapter. Subsequent chapters will take a deeper dive into certain variables and balancing tests.

The methodology starts with a given content policy, for example a policy to reduce or eliminate images of child pornography online, or a policy to apply the “right to be forgotten.”

For any given content policy, there should exist an ideal combination of internet intermediary action (e.g. website blocking based on DNS server) and institutional framework (e.g. self-regulation) that maximize the net benefits of the measure. The net benefits are equal to:

  • The benefits for society flowing from application of the measure;
  • less the direct and indirect costs resulting from the measure.

The direct and indirect costs include:

  • The direct costs of implementation of the measure by the internet interm...

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