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Consumer law in england and wales - Article Example

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The evolution of the Internet and online growth has facilitated novel business opportunities through the ad hoc evolution of electronic commerce, thereby creating a new business model (Reed, 2004). Directly correlated to the internet business model is the EU driven wave of legislative proposals geared towards consumer protection to address the challenges of the digital trading medium, which has directly impacted consumer law in England and Wales.
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Consumer law in england and wales
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Download file to see previous pages Accordingly, in this paper I shall adopt a focused approach and particularly consider the e-commerce driven consumer measures and their concomitant impact on consumer law in England and Wales.
The rapid pace of online business activity has fuelled piecemeal responsive legislative measures in an attempt to balance the interests and protection of consumers whilst simultaneously facilitating market growth. It is submitted at the outset, that ad hoc responsive EU legislative measures have been insufficient to cover the multifarious consumer transactions covered by the "e-commerce" umbrella. Moreover, the underlying weakness in such measures has been the fact that effective online business is clearly dependent on effective consumer protection as opposed to being mutually exclusive.
If we consider this contextually, within England and Wales the primary issue impacting consumer protection under the e-commerce paradigm has been effective consumer protection vis-'-vis optimum market facilitation. ...
Additionally, in order to commercially exploit the new e-commerce business model, the key to growing a successful online business is to ensure compliance with legal requirements regarding the selling of goods and services to consumers, work with reliable internet service providers and programmers and utilise effective marketing tools to promote business (Alexiou, 2002). As such, the central consumer protection legal issues raised by this are as follows:
1) The use of online terms and conditions - Standard commercial agreements need to consider the protection against unfair commercial practices and unfair contract terms (Singleton, 2003). Moreover, consumer contracting on online terms and conditions raises jurisdiction and applicable law issues; and
2) Data protection compliance needs to be addressed both in respect of collecting information on online users, selling customer lists and monitoring e-mail and viral marketing. Businesses must be registered with the Information Commissioner for processing and implement an online privacy policy and marketing and detailed internal policies on employee monitoring (Smith, 2001).
Furthermore, the e-commerce business model involves the provision of goods and services online in the course of business to consumers at a distance and as such, raises issues as to applicable law and enforceability, which is further compounded by borderless frontiers in enforcement (Smith, 2001).
The global nature of transacting online has fuelled a number of international e-commerce initiatives (Lloyd 2004). However, the rhetoric of these proposed models focus solely on the regulatory aspect of e-commerce, which is arguably one element of wider issues raised by e-commerce from a ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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