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Ignorance is no defence, but is inaccessibility? On the accessibility of national laws to foreign online publishers

Ignorance is no defence, but is inaccessibility? On the accessibility of national laws to foreign online publishers
Ignorance is no defence, but is inaccessibility? On the accessibility of national laws to foreign online publishers
The article examines, first, to what extent the legal exposure of online actors to multiple foreign laws creates a legal obligation on states to make their laws easily accessible to them and whether a state by failing to do so breaches any human rights. Second, it is examined what ‘easy accessibility’ actually entails. The discussion builds upon the premise that the Internet has created an environment where transnational trade or publications are no longer the prerogative of resource-rich multinational companies with large inhouse legal departments to advise them on their respective legal position in different jurisdictions. Yet, there is growing worldwide consensus that online content providers have to comply with the laws of the places where their sites can be accessed. This raises the issue of whether the legal expectation of states on foreign online actors goes, or should go, hand-in-hand with an obligation to cater for the special regulatory needs of foreign actors.
1360-0834
25-41
Kohl, Uta
813ff335-441f-4027-801b-4e6fc48409c3
Kohl, Uta
813ff335-441f-4027-801b-4e6fc48409c3

Kohl, Uta (2005) Ignorance is no defence, but is inaccessibility? On the accessibility of national laws to foreign online publishers. Information & Communications Technology Law, 14 (1), 25-41. (doi:10.1080/1360083042000325292).

Record type: Article

Abstract

The article examines, first, to what extent the legal exposure of online actors to multiple foreign laws creates a legal obligation on states to make their laws easily accessible to them and whether a state by failing to do so breaches any human rights. Second, it is examined what ‘easy accessibility’ actually entails. The discussion builds upon the premise that the Internet has created an environment where transnational trade or publications are no longer the prerogative of resource-rich multinational companies with large inhouse legal departments to advise them on their respective legal position in different jurisdictions. Yet, there is growing worldwide consensus that online content providers have to comply with the laws of the places where their sites can be accessed. This raises the issue of whether the legal expectation of states on foreign online actors goes, or should go, hand-in-hand with an obligation to cater for the special regulatory needs of foreign actors.

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Published date: 1 March 2005

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 427431
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/427431
ISSN: 1360-0834
PURE UUID: 3e9a792c-a85b-47d5-b576-55ac0a822b3b
ORCID for Uta Kohl: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0002-8616-9469

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 16 Jan 2019 17:30
Last modified: 09 Jan 2022 04:05

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