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Insurance And Enterprise: Cyber Insurance For Ransomware, Tom Baker, Anja Shortland Dec 2022

Insurance And Enterprise: Cyber Insurance For Ransomware, Tom Baker, Anja Shortland

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Selling insurance gives insurers an incentive to manage insured risks. The “insurance as governance” literature demonstrates that insurers often make insurance conditional on ex ante risk reduction or mitigation. But insurance governs in support of enterprise, not security for its own sake. Tight underwriting inhibits enterprise – not only for insured businesses but also the business of insurance. This paper highlights ex post loss reduction as a form of insurance-based governance. Drawing on interviews with industry insiders, we explore how insurers addressed the evolving problems of moral hazard, uncertainty, and correlated losses since the 1990s. We find that cyber insurance …


Municipal Fiber In The United States: A Financial Assessment, Christopher S. Yoo, Jesse Lambert, Timothy P. Pfenninger Jun 2022

Municipal Fiber In The United States: A Financial Assessment, Christopher S. Yoo, Jesse Lambert, Timothy P. Pfenninger

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Despite growing interest in broadband provided by municipally owned and operated fiber-to-the-home networks, the academic literature has yet to undertake a systematic assessment of these projects’ financial performance. To fill this gap, we utilize municipalities’ official reports to offer an empirical evaluation of the financial performance of every municipal fiber project in the U.S. operating in 2010 through 2019. An analysis of the actual performance of the resulting fifteen-project panel dataset reveals that none of the projects generated sufficient nominal cash flow in the short run to maintain solvency without infusions of additional cash from outside sources or debt relief. …


The Political Dynamics Of Legislative Reform: Potential Drivers Of The Next Communications Statute, Christopher S. Yoo, Tiffany Keung Mar 2022

The Political Dynamics Of Legislative Reform: Potential Drivers Of The Next Communications Statute, Christopher S. Yoo, Tiffany Keung

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Although most studies of major communications reform legislation focus on the merits of their substantive provisions, analyzing the political dynamics that led to the enactment of such legislation can yield important insights. An examination of the tradeoffs that led the major industry segments to support the Telecommunications Act of 1996 provides a useful illustration of the political bargain that it embodies. Application of a similar analysis to the current context identifies seven components that could form the basis for the next communications statute: universal service, pole attachments, privacy, intermediary immunity, net neutrality, spectrum policy, and antitrust reform. Determining how these …


Dismantling The “Black Opticon”: Privacy, Race Equity, And Online Data-Protection Reform, Anita L. Allen Feb 2022

Dismantling The “Black Opticon”: Privacy, Race Equity, And Online Data-Protection Reform, Anita L. Allen

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African Americans online face three distinguishable but related categories of vulnerability to bias and discrimination that I dub the “Black Opticon”: discriminatory oversurveillance, discriminatory exclusion, and discriminatory predation. Escaping the Black Opticon is unlikely without acknowledgement of privacy’s unequal distribution and privacy law’s outmoded and unduly race-neutral façade. African Americans could benefit from race-conscious efforts to shape a more equitable digital public sphere through improved laws and legal institutions. This Essay critically elaborates the Black Opticon triad and considers whether the Virginia Consumer Data Protection Act (2021), the federal Data Protection Act (2021), and new resources for the Federal Trade …


What Is The Relationship Between Language And Thought?: Linguistic Relativity And Its Implications For Copyright, Christopher S. Yoo Sep 2021

What Is The Relationship Between Language And Thought?: Linguistic Relativity And Its Implications For Copyright, Christopher S. Yoo

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To date, copyright scholarship has almost completely overlooked the linguistics and cognitive psychology literature exploring the connection between language and thought. An exploration of the two major strains of this literature, known as universal grammar (associated with Noam Chomsky) and linguistic relativity (centered around the Sapir-Whorf hypothesis), offers insights into the copyrightability of constructed languages and of the type of software packages at issue in Google v. Oracle recently decided by the Supreme Court. It turns to modularity theory as the key idea unifying the analysis of both languages and software in ways that suggest that the information filtering associated …


Administrative Law In The Automated State, Cary Coglianese Jan 2021

Administrative Law In The Automated State, Cary Coglianese

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In the future, administrative agencies will rely increasingly on digital automation powered by machine learning algorithms. Can U.S. administrative law accommodate such a future? Not only might a highly automated state readily meet longstanding administrative law principles, but the responsible use of machine learning algorithms might perform even better than the status quo in terms of fulfilling administrative law’s core values of expert decision-making and democratic accountability. Algorithmic governance clearly promises more accurate, data-driven decisions. Moreover, due to their mathematical properties, algorithms might well prove to be more faithful agents of democratic institutions. Yet even if an automated state were …


Privacy Vs. Transparency: Handling Protected Materials In Agency Rulemaking, Christopher S. Yoo, Kellen Mccoy Jan 2021

Privacy Vs. Transparency: Handling Protected Materials In Agency Rulemaking, Christopher S. Yoo, Kellen Mccoy

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Agencies conducting informal rulemaking proceedings increasingly confront conflicting duties with respect to protected materials included in information submitted in public rulemaking dockets. They must reconcile the broad commitment to openness and transparency reflected in federal law with the duty to protect confidential business information (CBI) and personally identifiable information (PII) against improper disclosure.

This Article presents an analysis of how agencies can best balance these often-countervailing considerations. Part I explores the statutory duties to disclose and withhold information submitted in public rulemaking dockets placed on agencies. It also examines judicial decisions and other legal interpretations regarding the proper way to …


The First Amendment, Common Carriers, And Public Accommodations: Net Neutrality, Digital Platforms, And Privacy, Christopher S. Yoo Jan 2021

The First Amendment, Common Carriers, And Public Accommodations: Net Neutrality, Digital Platforms, And Privacy, Christopher S. Yoo

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Recent prominent judicial opinions have assumed that common carriers have few to no First Amendment rights and that calling an actor a common carrier or public accommodation could justify limiting its right to exclude and mandating that it provide nondiscriminatory access. A review of the history reveals that the underlying law is richer than these simple statements would suggest. The principles for determining what constitutes a common carrier or a public accommodation and the level of First Amendment protection both turn on whether the actor holds itself out as serving all members of the public or whether it asserts editorial …


Is The Digital Economy Too Concentrated?, Jonathan Klick Nov 2020

Is The Digital Economy Too Concentrated?, Jonathan Klick

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Concentration in the digital economy in the United States has sparked loud criticism and spurred calls for wide-ranging reforms. These reforms include everything from increased enforcement of existing antitrust laws, such as challenging more mergers and breaking up firms, to an abandonment of the consumer welfare standard. Critics cite corruption and more systemic public choice problems, while others invoke the populist origins of antitrust to slay the digital Goliaths. On the other side, there is skepticism regarding these arguments. This chapter continues much of that skepticism.


Network Effects In Action, Christopher S. Yoo Nov 2020

Network Effects In Action, Christopher S. Yoo

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This Chapter begins by examining and exploring the theoretical and empirical limits of the possible bases of network effects, paying particular attention to the most commonly cited framework known as Metcalfe’s Law. It continues by exploring the concept of network externalities, defined as the positive external consumption benefits that the decision to join a network creates for the other members of the network, which is more ambiguous than commonly realized. It then reviews the structural factors needed for models based on network effects to have anticompetitive effects and identifies other factors that can dissipate those effects. Finally, it identifies alternative …


House Judiciary Inquiry Into Competition In Digital Markets: Statement, Herbert J. Hovenkamp Apr 2020

House Judiciary Inquiry Into Competition In Digital Markets: Statement, Herbert J. Hovenkamp

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This is a response to a query from the Judiciary Committee of the U.S. House of Representatives, requesting my views about the adequacy of existing antitrust policy in digital markets.

The statutory text of the United States antitrust laws is very broad, condemning all anticompetitive restraints on trade, monopolization, and mergers and interbrand contractual exclusion whose effect “may be substantially to lessen competition or tend to create a monopoly.” Federal judicial interpretation is much narrower, however, for several reasons. One is the residue of a reaction against excessive antitrust enforcement in the 1970s and earlier. However, since that time antitrust …


Taxing Bitcoin And Blockchains—What The Irs Told Us (And What It Didn’T), David J. Shakow Jan 2020

Taxing Bitcoin And Blockchains—What The Irs Told Us (And What It Didn’T), David J. Shakow

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The IRS recently issued its second description of how it will treat Bitcoin and other blockchain assets. Some of its analysis leaves open questions that invite further consideration, and important issues remain unresolved. Moreover, because the popular Bitcoin blockchain uses a "proof of work" consensus procedure, issues relating to the alternative "proof of stake" procedure have been neglected.


Transactional Scripts In Contract Stacks, Shaanan Cohney, David A. Hoffman Jan 2020

Transactional Scripts In Contract Stacks, Shaanan Cohney, David A. Hoffman

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Deals accomplished through software persistently residing on computer networks—sometimes called smart contracts, but better termed transactional scripts—embody a potentially revolutionary contracting innovation. Ours is the first precise account in the legal literature of how such scripts are created, and when they produce errors of legal significance.

Scripts’ most celebrated use case is for transactions operating exclusively on public, permissionless, blockchains: such exchanges eliminate the need for trusted intermediaries and seem to permit parties to commit ex ante to automated performance. But public transactional scripts are costly both to develop and execute, with significant fees imposed for data storage. Worse, bugs …


5g And Net Neutrality, Christopher S. Yoo, Jesse Lambert Jan 2019

5g And Net Neutrality, Christopher S. Yoo, Jesse Lambert

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Industry observers have raised the possibility that European network neutrality regulations may obstruct the deployment of 5G. To assess those claims, this Chapter describes the key technologies likely to be incorporated into 5G, including millimeter wave band radios, massive multiple input/multiple output (MIMO), ultra-densification, multiple radio access technologies (multi-RAT), and support for device-to-device (D2D) and machine-to-machine (M2M) connectivity. It then reviews the business models likely to be associated with 5G, including network management through biasing and blanking, an emphasis on business-to-business (B2B) communications, and network function virtualization/network slicing. It then lays out the network neutrality regulations created by the EU …


Coin-Operated Capitalism, Shaanan Cohney, David A. Hoffman, Jeremy Sklaroff, David A. Wishnick Jan 2019

Coin-Operated Capitalism, Shaanan Cohney, David A. Hoffman, Jeremy Sklaroff, David A. Wishnick

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This Article presents the legal literature’s first detailed analysis of the inner workings of Initial Coin Offerings. We characterize the ICO as an example of financial innovation, placing it in kinship with venture capital contracting, asset securitization, and (obviously) the IPO. We also take the form seriously as an example of technological innovation, where promoters are beginning to effectuate their promises to investors through computer code, rather than traditional contract. To understand the dynamics of this shift, we first collect contracts, “white papers,” and other contract-like documents for the fifty top-grossing ICOs of 2017. We then analyze how such projects’ …


Paul Baran, Network Theory, And The Past, Present, And Future Of Internet, Christopher S. Yoo Dec 2018

Paul Baran, Network Theory, And The Past, Present, And Future Of Internet, Christopher S. Yoo

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Paul Baran’s seminal 1964 article “On Distributed Communications Networks” that first proposed packet switching also advanced an underappreciated vision of network architecture: a lattice-like, distributed network, in which each node of the Internet would be homogeneous and equal in status to all other nodes. Scholars who have subsequently embraced the concept of a lattice-like network approach have largely overlooked the extent to which it is both inconsistent with network theory (associated with the work of Duncan Watts and Albert-László Barabási), which emphasizes the importance of short cuts and hubs in enabling networks to scale, and the actual way, the Internet …


Prophylactic Merger Policy, Herbert J. Hovenkamp Dec 2018

Prophylactic Merger Policy, Herbert J. Hovenkamp

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An important purpose of the antitrust merger law is to arrest certain anticompetitive practices or outcomes in their “incipiency.” Many Clayton Act decisions involving both mergers and other practices had recognized the idea as early as the 1920s. In Brown Shoe the Supreme Court doubled down on the idea, attributing to Congress a concern about a “rising tide of economic concentration” that must be halted “at its outset and before it gathered momentum.” The Supreme Court did not explain why an incipiency test was needed to address this particular problem. Once structural thresholds for identifying problematic mergers are identified there …


The Tao Of The Dao: Taxing An Entity That Lives On A Blockchain, David J. Shakow Aug 2018

The Tao Of The Dao: Taxing An Entity That Lives On A Blockchain, David J. Shakow

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In this report, Shakow explains how a decentralized autonomous organization functions and interacts with the U.S. tax system and presents the many tax issues that these structures raise. The possibility of using smart contracts to allow an entity to operate totally autonomously on a blockchain platform seems attractive. However, little thought has been given to how such an entity can comply with the requirements of a tax system. The DAO, the first major attempt to create such an organization, failed because of a programming error. If successful examples proliferate in the future, tax authorities will face significant problems in getting …


Lowering Legal Barriers To Rpki Adoption, Christopher S. Yoo, David A. Wishnick Jan 2018

Lowering Legal Barriers To Rpki Adoption, Christopher S. Yoo, David A. Wishnick

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Across the Internet, mistaken and malicious routing announcements impose significant costs on users and network operators. To make routing announcements more reliable and secure, Internet coordination bodies have encouraged network operators to adopt the Resource Public Key Infrastructure (“RPKI”) framework. Despite this encouragement, RPKI’s adoption rates are low, especially in North America.

This report presents the results of a year-long investigation into the hypothesis—widespread within the network operator community—that legal issues pose barriers to RPKI adoption and are one cause of the disparities between North America and other regions of the world. On the basis of interviews and analysis of …


Common Carriage’S Domain, Christopher S. Yoo Jan 2018

Common Carriage’S Domain, Christopher S. Yoo

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The judicial decision invalidating the Federal Communications Commission's first Open Internet Order has led advocates to embrace common carriage as the legal basis for network neutrality. In so doing, network neutrality proponents have overlooked the academic literature on common carriage as well as lessons from its implementation history. This Essay distills these learnings into five factors that play a key role in promoting common carriage's success: (1) commodity products, (2) simple interfaces, (3) stability and uniformity in the transmission technology, (4) full deployment of the transmission network, and (5) stable demand and market shares. Applying this framework to the Internet …


An Unsung Success Story: A Forty-Year Retrospective On U.S. Communications Policy, Christopher S. Yoo Nov 2017

An Unsung Success Story: A Forty-Year Retrospective On U.S. Communications Policy, Christopher S. Yoo

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Looking backwards on the occasion of Telecommunications Policy’s fortieth anniversary reveals just how far U.S. communications policy has come. All of the major challenges of 1976, such as promoting competition in customer premises equipment, long distance, and television networking, have largely been overcome. Moreover, new issues that emerged later, such as competition in local telephone service and multichannel video program distribution, have also largely been solved. More often than not, the solution has been the result of structural changes that enhanced facilities-based competition rather than agency-imposed behavioral requirements. Moreover, close inspection reveals that in most cases, prodding by the courts …


The Tax Treatment Of Tokens: What Does It Betoken?, David J. Shakow Aug 2017

The Tax Treatment Of Tokens: What Does It Betoken?, David J. Shakow

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Digital tokens have been used to raise substantial amounts of money. But little attention has been paid to the tax consequences surrounding their issuance and sale. There are significant potential tax liabilities lurking in the use of digital tokens. But, because of the anonymity inherent in the blockchain structures used for the issuance of tokens and payments for them, there is a significant question as to whether those tax liabilities will ever be collected.


Privacy, Poverty, And Big Data: A Matrix Of Vulnerabilities For Poor Americans, Mary Madden, Michele E. Gilman, Karen Levy, Alice Marwick Jan 2017

Privacy, Poverty, And Big Data: A Matrix Of Vulnerabilities For Poor Americans, Mary Madden, Michele E. Gilman, Karen Levy, Alice Marwick

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This Article examines the matrix of vulnerabilities that low-income people face as a result of the collection and aggregation of big data and the application of predictive analytics. On one hand, big data systems could reverse growing economic inequality by expanding access to opportunities for low-income people. On the other hand, big data could widen economic gaps by making it possible to prey on low-income people or to exclude them from opportunities due to biases entrenched in algorithmic decision-making tools. New kinds of “networked privacy” harms, in which users are simultaneously held liable for their own behavior and the actions …


Legal Mechanisms For Governing The Transition Of Key Domain Name Functions To The Global Multi-Stakeholder Community, Christopher S. Yoo, Aaron Shull, Paul Twomey Jan 2017

Legal Mechanisms For Governing The Transition Of Key Domain Name Functions To The Global Multi-Stakeholder Community, Christopher S. Yoo, Aaron Shull, Paul Twomey

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This Chapter proposes an alternative approach to the IANA transition that migrates the existing core contractual requirements imposed by the US government to the existing IANA functions customers. It also advances modest internal accountability revisions that could be undertaken within ICANN’s existing structure. Specifically, it advocates that the Independent Review Tribunal charged with reviewing certain ICANN board of directors-related decisions be selected by a multi-stakeholder committee rather than being subject to approval by ICANN and expanding the grounds for review to cover all of the rubrics recommended by ICANN’s “Improving Institutional Confidence” process in 2008-2009, including fairness, fidelity to the …


Protecting One's Own Privacy In A Big Data Economy, Anita L. Allen Dec 2016

Protecting One's Own Privacy In A Big Data Economy, Anita L. Allen

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Big Data is the vast quantities of information amenable to large-scale collection, storage, and analysis. Using such data, companies and researchers can deploy complex algorithms and artificial intelligence technologies to reveal otherwise unascertained patterns, links, behaviors, trends, identities, and practical knowledge. The information that comprises Big Data arises from government and business practices, consumer transactions, and the digital applications sometimes referred to as the “Internet of Things.” Individuals invisibly contribute to Big Data whenever they live digital lifestyles or otherwise participate in the digital economy, such as when they shop with a credit card, get treated at a hospital, apply …


Antitrust And Information Technologies, Herbert J. Hovenkamp Mar 2016

Antitrust And Information Technologies, Herbert J. Hovenkamp

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Technological change strongly affects the use of information to facilitate anticompetitive practices. The effects result mainly from digitization and the many products and processes that it enables. These technologies of information also account for a significant portion of the difficulties that antitrust law encounters when its addresses intellectual property rights. In addition, changes in the technologies of information affect the structures of certain products, in the process either increasing or decreasing the potential for competitive harm.

For example, digital technology affects the way firms exercise market power, but it also imposes serious measurement difficulties. The digital revolution has occurred in …


“Spooky Action At A Distance”: Intangible Injury In Fact In The Information Age, Seth F. Kreimer Feb 2016

“Spooky Action At A Distance”: Intangible Injury In Fact In The Information Age, Seth F. Kreimer

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Two decades after Justice Douglas coined “injury in fact” as the token of admission to federal court under Article III, Justice Scalia sealed it into the constitutional canon in Lujan v. Defenders of Wildlife. In the two decades since Lujan, Justice Scalia has thrown increasingly pointed barbs at the permissive standing doctrine of the Warren Court, maintaining it is founded on impermissible recognition of “Psychic Injury.” Justice Scalia and his acolytes take the position that Article III requires a tough minded, common sense and practical approach. Injuries in fact must be "tangible" "direct" "concrete" "de facto" realities in time and …


Making Civilian Drones Safe: Performance Standards, Self-Certification, And Post-Sale Data Collection, Henry Perritt, Albert Plawinski Jan 2016

Making Civilian Drones Safe: Performance Standards, Self-Certification, And Post-Sale Data Collection, Henry Perritt, Albert Plawinski

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With millions of small drones in private hands, the FAA continues its struggle to develop an effective regulatory regime to comply with Congress’s mandate to integrate them into the national airspace system. Thousands of individuals and small businesses have obtained authorization from the FAA—"section 333 exemptions"—allowing them to fly their drones commercially. Farmers, TV stations, surveyors, construction-site supervisors, real estate agents, people selling their properties, and managers seeking cheaper and safer ways to inspect their facilities, want to hire the exemption holders, but many are holding back until the FAA clarifies the groundrules.The FAA understands that its traditional approach for …


Modularity Theory And Internet Regulation, Christopher S. Yoo Jan 2016

Modularity Theory And Internet Regulation, Christopher S. Yoo

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Modularity is often cited as one of the foundations for the Internet’s success. Unfortunately, academic discussions about modularity appearing in the literature on Internet policy are undertheorized. The persistence of nonmodular architectures for some technologies underscores the need for some theoretical basis for determining when modularity is the preferred approach. Even when modularity is desirable, theory must provide some basis for making key design decisions, such as the number of modules, the location of the interfaces between the modules, and the information included in those interfaces.

The literature on innovation indicates that modules should be determined by the nature of …


One Centimeter Over My Back Yard: Where Does Federal Preemption Of State Drone Regulation Start?, Henry H. Perritt Jr. Oct 2015

One Centimeter Over My Back Yard: Where Does Federal Preemption Of State Drone Regulation Start?, Henry H. Perritt Jr.

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The proliferation of cheap civilian drones and their obvious utility for precision agriculture, motion picture and television production, aerial surveying, newsgathering, utility infrastructure inspection, and disaster relief has accelerated the FAA’s sluggish effort to develop a proposal for generally applicable rules and caused it to grant more than 600 “section 333 exemptions” permitting commercial drone flight before its rules are finalized.

Federal preemption in the field of aviation safety regulation is generally assumed, but political pressure on states and municipalities to regulate drones and the ability of this revolutionary aviation technology to open up space close to the ground for …