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To what extent does e-commerce favour market facilitation over consumer objectives?

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  1. Introduction.
  2. Challenges of E-Commerce.
  3. International initiatives.
  4. EU initiatives.
  5. Conclusion.

Traditional business models cite ?location, location, location? as the critical factor for commercial success, however the hallmark of e-commerce is that issues of location in the physical sense are not relevant . As such, the concept of ?location? has created an internal paradox within this new business model, resulting from the evolution of novel legal issues, where ?location returns very much to the forefront? . Furthermore, it has been argued that the central issues raised by e-commerce are where the contract is made, the governing law, appropriate tax regime and consumer protection . This in itself highlights the competing interests operating at the heart of e-commerce; namely, the growth of business opportunities due to relative reduction in operating costs vis-à-vis the consumer rights against the shield of anonymity and bargaining power afforded by online business transactions.

[...] International Journal Law Info Tech (2004) at p.167. Ibid. Susan Singleton (2003). E-Commerce: A Practical Guide to the Law. Gower Publishing Limited Ibid. Ibid. Chissick, M., and Kelman, A., (2002). Electronic Commerce: Law and Practice?. 2nd Edition Sweet & Maxwell. Ibid. Porter, E.M., (1985) Competitive Advantage. The Free Press. Chaffey, D., (2006). E-Business and E-Commerce Management. FT Prentice Hall. Pervez & Lars., (2003). European Union the Race for Foreign Direct Investment in Europe. Oxford Ibid. Ibid. Chaffey, D., (2006) op.cit Ibid. Ibid. [...]

[...] As such, it is inherently impossible for adopted legal measures to adequately address the pace of technological change, which begs the question as to whether other mechanisms are needed to operate in conjunction with the legal framework to achieve a balance between market facilitation and consumer objectives. EU Initiatives The main EU initiatives relevant to the current analysis are the Distance Selling Directive[37], Electronic Commerce Directive[38] and the E-Money Directive[39]. The Distance Selling Directive has been incorporated into UK law in the form of the Consumer Protection (Distance Selling) Regulations 2000 (the Regulations). [...]

[...] Arno R Lodder, Henrik W.K Kaspersen., (2002) ?Edirectives: Guide to European Union Law on E-Commerce Commentary on the Directives on Distance Selling, Electronic Signatures, Electronic Commerce, Copyright in the Information Society and Data Protection?. Kluwer Law International. Regulation 3(1). Arno R Lodder, Henrik W.K Kaspersen., (2002) op.cit. Ibid. Regulation 7(1). Chissick, M., and Kelman, A., (2002). Op.cit. Ibid. See Susan Singleton (2006) op.cit. Ibid. Bohm, N., Brown, I., Gladman, B., (2000). Electronic Commerce: Who carries the Risk of fraud? The Journal of Information, Law and [...]

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