In digital economies, the Internet enables the "platformisation" of everything. Big technology companies and mobile apps are running mega marketplaces, supported by seamless online payments systems. This rapidly expanding ecosystem is fueled by data. Meanwhile, perceptions of the global financial crisis, data breaches, disinformation and the manipulation of political sentiment have combined to create a modern trust crisis. A lack of trust constrains commerce, particularly in terms of consumer protection and investment. Big data, artificial intelligence, automated algorithms and blockchain technology offer new solutions and risks.
Trust in our legal systems depends on certainty, consistency and enforceability of the law. However, regulatory and remedial gaps exist because the law has not kept up with technology. This work explores the role of competency and good faith, in the creation of social and legal relationships of trust; and the need for governance transparency and human accountability to combat distrust, particularly in digital economies.
Table of Contents
Part I Introduction and classification
2. The cost of trust
3. Distinguishing between social relationships of trust and Trusts
4. Distinguishing digital economies from non-digital economies
5. Contract versus trust
6. Financial versus non-financial goals and values in business
Part II Social relationships of trust in digital economies
8. Social contracting in e-business
9. Trust in online advertising
10. Industrial relations in the gig economy
11. Protecting privacy in a world of big data
12. The accountability of algorithms
13. Trustless relationships enabled by blockchain
Part III Legal relationships of Trust in digital and crypto economies
15. Duties of Trustees and fiduciaries in digital economies
16. Statutory Trustees of crypto-assets
17. Good faith and competence in crypto-economies
18. Liability of third parties in digital and crypto-economies
Part IV Key challenges and conclusion
19. Closing the tax gap in digital economies
20. Too much data?
21. The end of ownership in digital economies?
Dr Philippa (Pip) Ryan is a barrister and a senior lecturer in the College of Law at the Australian National University in Canberra. She is a Fellow of the Australian Digital Commerce Association. Pip is Chair of the Standards Australia blockchain working group for smart contracts, and Deputy Chair of the Australian Computer Society’s blockchain technical committee. In 2018, she was named an American Bar Association "Legal Rebel". Pip co-authored Van Rijmenam and Ryan, Blockchain: Transforming Your Business and Our World (Routledge, 2019). Her favourite place to be is with her husband at home in the Snowy Mountains, with family and friends.