NetChoice: promoting online convenience, choice, and commerce
NetChoice is a trade association of eCommerce businesses and online consumers all of whom share the goal of promoting convenience, choice, and commerce on the net.Learn More
There has been a lot of concern about the failure of the W3C to finish creating a do-not-track (DNT) standard. Some worry that if this takes too long, we may see a proliferation of different and competing DNT systems which make compliance difficult if not impracticable.
The World Wide Web Consortium (W3C), the standards organization for the web, has been working on creating a DNT standard for several months and many are growing impatient.
The Marketplace Fairness Act is a like a bad impressionist painting – it’s appealing at first glance, but the longer you stare the worse it looks. The Senate got around that problem today by making sure nobody had a chance to look too closely at this legislation. Thankfully for businesses and consumers, the House of Representatives won’t be so accommodating.
Today’s vote to limit debate on the ironically named Marketplace Fairness Act (MFA) effectively ends any chance that the Senate will fix the measure’s many crippling flaws before they pass it over to the House.
Cash-strapped state executives and big-box-store lobbyists finally got what they have been working for, a measure that adds tax burdens on small and midsized businesses around the country, without forcing states to go through with the vexing task of actually simplifying their Byzantine tax codes. The MFA contains none of the simplifications identified by the True Simplification of Taxation coalition and is actually worse for consumers than the bad bill that failed to move last year.Read More
Mandarin is a tricky language, but ICANN may want to learn the expression chóngfù before leaving the Beijing meeting. Chóngfù means “do-over” and that’s what ICANN needs to forestall an entirely preventable disaster in the delegation of new top-level domains (TLDs).
The issue of “string similarity” seems straightforward. Nobody inside ICANN or out there in the real world wants Internet users to be confused by new TLDs that are confusingly similar. Imagine hearing an ad offering low rates at car.loans but you encounter something completely different at car.loan instead? And what would stop somebody from launching a new TLD by just tacking an “s” onto popular domains like .com or .org?
The Government Advisory Committee (GAC) is catching a lot of flack for it’s Beijing Communiqué, but one thing the GAC got right was its advice that singular/plural strings are confusingly similar.
So how did we get to a point where ICANN inexplicably failed to find confusing similarity for 24 pairs of singular and plural forms of the same words, including .web /.webs, .game/.games, and .hotel/.hotels? More important, how do we fix this?Read More
Some things are tough work. Like becoming an astronaut, finding the Higgs boson, or running a marathon. It’s also tough work to design an entirely new tax regime for the Internet.
Tackling tough jobs requires discipline, training and patience. Shortcuts may feel good, but they often lead to failure, embarrassment or can even get you hurt. Last week’s Senate vote on a non-binding resolution supporting a new Internet sales tax is a shortcut something akin to …rollerblading in a marathon. A finish line was ultimately crossed, but some folks looked pretty silly doing it and the victory cheer rings hollow.
Fortunately, last week’s debate included wisdom from Senators who understand that short-circuiting debate on such an important issue is bad policy. Senator Max Baucus reminded his colleagues that they were voting on a “revolutionary” proposal that raised more questions than it answered.Read More