The iii is an international group of researchers who study the legal, social, philosophical, and economic aspects of the internet. We comment on novel technologies, internet in general and more specific the interplay between the internet and the contributors’ own areas of expertise. More about us.

Subscribe to our newsletter

You can also find us on:


Do you create apps from home? Prepare to give your home-address to the world

23 Sep, 2014   | by:


A couple of days ago Androidpolice reported that Google will institute a new policy, requiring all app developers who offer any app costing money (including those offering in-app purchases) to list their physical address. This information will then be published on the developers’ profiles. Many of these app developers are not big companies but rather hobbyists or the proverbial guy working from his (or his parents’) garage. For them this new policy means revealing their home-address to the world. While it allows developers to comply with current EU consumer legislation, the method to achieve this, which cannot be opted out from, places an unnecessary heavy privacy burden on the developers. More…



Google Spain decision: Did the European Court of Justice Forget About Freedom of Expression?

6 Sep, 2014   | by:


The Google Spain-decision of the European Court of Justice is a controversial one. On this blog, Anna Berlee already explained the facts of the case and the implications of the Court’s decision. Julia Powles and Jat Singh from the University of Cambridge have compiled a list of academic commentary on their Cambridge Code website.

Frederik Zuiderveen Borgesius and I put in our two cents as well. We wrote a paper focusing on the decision’s implications on the fundamental right of freedom of expression. In the paper, we argue that the Court did not fully take into account the right to freedom of expression when it decided that search engine operators, under certain conditions, have to remove search results for name searches. In particular the Court’s reasoning that privacy and data protection rights override “as a rule” the public’s right to receive information, is a departure from human rights doctrine developed by the European Court of Human Rights. More…


3D Printing is no longer Utopian – in more ways than one

15 Aug, 2014   | by:


This post offers some expanded thoughts based from the short piece I recently had published in The New York Times, Room for Debate.

To understand how the claims of 3-D printing technologies are utopian, the past myth of the “paperless office” is instructive. The paperless office was reported as a digital revolution in waiting by Business Week in 1975.

Interestingly, the questions that were being asked in 1975 of what digital, paperless work world would look like, are quite similar to questions now being asked about 3D printing.



Aereo-decision: Injecting New Uncertainty into the Liability of Online Service Providers

27 Jun, 2014   | by:

Aereo Antenna Array

TV-over-Internet service Aereo suffered a major defeat yesterday, when the U.S. Supreme Court decided its service infringed on ABC’s copyrights. Aereo offers its subscribers free-to-air TV programming over the Internet. The service depends on thousands of antennas housed in a central warehouse. On Aereo’s website subscribers can select a TV show that will then be tuned into and streamed to the subscriber’s device. For every user watching, Aereo dedicates one antenna, and in order to transcode and stream the show, Aereo stores a copy of the show in a subscriber-specific folder on its servers. Thus, instead of setting up an own antenna to pick up free-to-air TV, one “rents” an antenna from Aereo’s antenna-park to remotely pick up a specific TV show, which is then streamed to an Internet-connected device. More…



Google Spain v. AEPD: About the ‘right to be forgotten’ and the forgotten right of freedom of expression

15 May, 2014   | by:


On 13 May the CJEU accepted a partial ‘right to be forgotten’ in the Case of Google Spain, Google v. AEPDWhat is remarkable about this ruling, is the extent of privacy protection adopted.

The Facts of the Case

Some 16 years ago Mario Costeja González was going through a rough patch in his life and was unable to pay his social security debts. As a result, his house was sold via public auction. This auction was announced in a newspaper.  At a later date an electronic version of the newspaper was made available online by its publisher. Google indexed the link and if you ‘googled’ the name of Mr. González a link to the newspaper article showed up in the search results. More…

, , , , , ,


The Data Retention Directive: Invalid. Now What?!

8 Apr, 2014   | by:

Today the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) declared the Data Retention Directive to be invalid, based on the fact that ‘the EU legislature has exceeded the limited imposed by compliance with the principle of proportionality’. How did the CJEU come to this decision, what are the governmental responses and what does this mean for harmonisation? More…