Tech Policy

Tech Policy

Research

Christopher Koopman, Matthew Mitchell, Adam Thierer | Dec 08, 2014
When market circumstances change dramatically—or when new technology or competition alleviates the need for regulation—then public policy should evolve and adapt to accommodate these realities. This paper concludes with some proposals for further research in this area, and a call for a more informed regulatory approach that accounts for the innovations of the sharing economy.
Avery E. Holton, Sean Lawson, Cynthia D. Love | Dec 06, 2014
Unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), commonly referred to as “drones,” have gained media attention over the last several years with much of the focus centering on their military uses and their emerging role in newsgathering. News organizations, journalists, and private citizens have employed UAVs to capture and share breaking news, to provide glimpses of natural disasters that would otherwise be too hazardous for journalists to obtain, and to offer unique perspectives that enrich news storytelling.
Adam Thierer | Nov 19, 2014
This paper highlights some of the opportunities presented by the rise of the so-called Internet of Things in general and wearable technology in particular and encourages policymakers to allow these technologies to develop in a relatively unabated fashion. As with other new and highly disruptive digital technologies, however, the Internet of Things and wearable technology will challenge existing social, economic, and legal norms.
Cynthia D. Love, Sean Lawson, Avery E. Holton | Sep 19, 2014
Unmanned aircraft systems (UASs), commonly referred to as drones, have rocketed to public attention in the last decade, largely as a result of the U.S. military’s use of this technology in the“War on Terror.” As UASs have come home and have been put to a growing number of uses in domestic airspace, the Federal Aviation Administration has attempted to ban their commercial use.
Adam Thierer, Ryan Hagemann | Sep 17, 2014
This paper addresses some of the early policy concerns about “connected cars” and driverless vehicles and promotes “bottom-up” solutions to ensure that innovation continues to flourish in this space.
Eli Dourado | Sep 08, 2014
Libertarians intuitively understand the case for patents: just as other property rights internalize the social benefits of improvements to land, automobile maintenance, or business investment, patents incentivize the creation of new inventions, which might otherwise be undersupplied.

Testimony & Comments

Adam Thierer, Ryan Hagemann | Sep 23, 2014
As part of the FAA Modernization and Reform Act of 2012 (FMRA), Congress ordered the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to integrate unmanned aircraft systems (UASs)—sometimes referred to as drones—into the National Airspace System by September 2015. As part of that effort, the FAA is currently accepting comments on its “Interpretation of the Special Rule for Model Aircraft” (Section 336 of the FMRA) and the FAA’s enforcement authority over model aircraft as affirmed by the statute.
Brent Skorup | Sep 15, 2014
Though an effective rallying cry, there is no consensus about what “net neutrality” or the “open Internet” means when it comes to putting rules on paper. Professor Barbara van Schewick has said, “If there is no rule against blocking in a proposal, it’s not a network neutrality proposal.
Jerry Brito, Eli Dourado | Aug 14, 2014
As the Treasury Department’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network has found, certain virtual currency businesses are money service businesses. Typically such money service businesses engage in money transmission and as a result must acquire a money transmitter license in each state in which they do business.
Brent Skorup | Jul 24, 2014
From time to time the FCC must reexamine the justifications for its rules. In light of the many industry changes since these rules were promulgated, the FCC should repeal these rules and others. The FCC cannot fix all of the regulatory distortions in the video marketplace, but repealing network nonduplication and syndicated exclusivity rules is an excellent first step.
Brent Skorup | Jun 20, 2014
Notwithstanding the DACA recommendations for a reconstituted communications competition agency, Congress should also consider alternatives such as abolishing the FCC entirely and relying on antitrust agencies or merging the FCC’s responsibilities with the Federal Trade Commission.
Brent Skorup | Apr 25, 2014
Former senior Federal Communications Commission (FCC) officials Gerald Faulhaber and David Farber noted without irony that US spectrum policy resembles GOSPLAN, the Soviet planning agency that distributed scarce inputs to producers in every sector of the Soviet economy. The woeful inefficiencies and waste resulting from the current system of regulatory allocation are predictable, yet avoidable.

Research Summaries & Toolkits

Speeches & Presentations

Expert Commentary

Vox
By Eli Dourado, Danielle Kehl |
Dec 12, 2014

Right now, technology policy wonks are locked in a bitter dispute about the future of network neutrality. One of us is a technology policy expert who supports President Obama's call for stronger network neutrality regulations. The other is a tech policy expert who thinks it's a terrible idea.
Dec 12, 2014

A national spotlight is now focused on aggressive law enforcement tactics and the justice system. Today’s professional police forces — where officers in even one-stoplight towns might have body armor and mine-resistant vehicles — already raise concerns. Yet new data-mining technologies can now provide police with vast amounts of surveillance information and could radically increase police power. Policing can be increasingly targeted at specific people and neighborhoods — with potentially serious inequitable effects.
Dec 01, 2014

The world is on course to change very rapidly in a short amount of time. From new business models changing how individuals interact with one another to the onset of deliveries-by-drone, technology is altering the way we live our daily lives — and some of the most significant changes have yet to arrive.
Nov 26, 2014

Unleashing the powerful potential of permissionless innovation for autonomous vehicle technology could start to alleviate some of the known, and clearly detrimental, harms to drivers and passengers this holiday season. That would be something for which we can all be truly thankful.
Nov 24, 2014

For far too long, the debate about “online safety” has been preoccupied with fear. While we must continue to work together to find constructive solutions to the very real risks and harms that exist, we need to redouble our efforts to remind others that, on balance, there are good reasons to be optimistic and focus on the positive aspects of online life.
Nov 19, 2014

Permissionless innovation can help spur the next great industrial revolution by unlocking amazing opportunities in these and other arenas, boosting long-term growth in the process.

Charts

Experts

Podcasts

Adam Thierer | November 26, 2014
In an interview on Marketplace radio, Adam Thierer discusses the EU's "right to be forgotten" policy.

Recent Events

This program will: provide an introduction to net neutrality and briefly explain the history of the debate, lay out the arguments for and against net neutrality, and discuss mechanisms to ensure the Internet remains a vibrantly free conduit and tool for ideas, innovation and economic growth.

Books

Tom W. Bell | Apr 29, 2014
Intellectual Privilege reveals copyright as a statutory privilege that threatens our natural and constitutional rights. From this fresh perspective comes fresh solutions to copyright’s problems.

Media Clippings

Eli Dourado | Sep 06, 2014
This excerpt originally appeared in The Hill.
Adam Thierer | Jul 03, 2014
This excerpt originally appeared in Real Clear Policy.
Jerry Brito | Jun 02, 2014
This excerpt originally appeared in Yahoo News.
Jerry Brito | May 29, 2014
This excerpt originally appeared in Advertising Age.
Adam Thierer | May 16, 2014
Adam Thierer quoted at Tech News World.
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