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Opponents Say McCain-Kerry Bill Would Limit the Internet
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Joined: 24 Feb 2005
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Posted: Fri Apr 15, 2011 2:52 pm    Post subject: Opponents Say McCain-Kerry Bill Would Limit the Internet  

A new privacy bill introduced earlier this week has a lot of people talking. The bipartisan proposal introduced by Senators McCain and Kerry would create the nation’s first comprehensive privacy law.

Does America need a federal privacy law? Share your thoughts.

Advocates of the bill say it would enforce protection for consumers’ digital data and would also limit how large companies collect and utilize information. Those who oppose it believe that it would have a negative impact on the future development of the Web.

“The reality is, I don’t think we’ve yet determined that there is a clear market failure or harm that needs to be addressed through preemptive, prophylactic forms of regulation such as the McCain/Kerry bill,” said Adam Thierer.

Thierer is a senior research fellow with the Technology Policy Project at the Mercatus Center at George Mason University. He believes that a “hands off the Internet” policy is a better approach for the Web.

Up to this point, the U.S. has relied on a model that lets users work out problems in the marketplace through experimentation. Other countries, however, have extensive privacy regulations that govern their information flow.

Thierer, and others that oppose the bill, believe it would create an “information control regime.” He also pointed out that there are tools already available that ensure for the same privacy measures that the bill would enforce on a federal level.

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