When Wikipedia, Google and other online service providers staged a ‘blackout protest’ against the Stop Online Piracy Act in January 2012, their actions inadvertently emphasized a fundamental truth that is often missed about the nature of cyberlaw. In attempts to address what is unique about the field, commentators have failed to appreciate that the field could – and should – be reconceputalized as a law of the global intermediated information exchange. Such a conception would provide a set of organizing principles that are lacking in existing scholarship. Nothing happens online that does not involve one or more intermediaries – the service providers who facilitate all digital commerce and communication by providing the hardware and software through which all interactions take place. This Article advocates a fundamental shift in the nature of cyberspace scholarship towards a law of the ‘intermediated information exchange.’ The author explains the benefits of such an approach in developing a more predictable and cohesive body of legal principles to govern cyberspace interactions.
Lipton, Jacqueline D., "Law of the Intermediated Information Exchange" (2014). Akron Law Publications. 144.