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Science and Technology Law

University of Michigan Law School

2021

Articles

Lawfulness response

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The Promise And Limits Of Lawfulness: Inequality, Law, And The Techlash, Salomé Viljoen Sep 2021

The Promise And Limits Of Lawfulness: Inequality, Law, And The Techlash, Salomé Viljoen

Articles

In response to widespread skepticism about the recent rise of “tech ethics”, many critics have called for legal reform instead. In contrast with the “ethics response”, critics consider the “lawfulness response” more capable of disciplining the excesses of the technology industry. In fact, both are simultaneously vulnerable to industry capture and capable of advancing a more democratic egalitarian agenda for the information economy. Both ethics and law offer a terrain of contestation, rather than a predetermined set of commitments by which to achieve more democratic and egalitarian technological production. In advancing this argument, the essay focuses on two misunderstandings common …