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Comments on “Big Data” to Department of Commerce

Washington, D.C. – The Internet Association’s President and CEO, Michael Beckerman, issues the following statement on comments on “Big Data” to Department of Commerce:

“The United States’ existing legal and self-regulatory frameworks provide the necessary flexibility to protect consumers while promoting the innovation economy. Any effort to evaluate our nation’s policies around “big data” must be premised on an effort to maintain consistency with existing policy and legal frameworks and to focus efforts on areas where real gaps exist. To address actual harms arising in the “big data” context, we support a self-regulatory framework that focuses on avoiding harmful uses of data rather than on restricting analysis that may benefit the public interest.

“The Internet’s underlying structure is based on inclusion rather than exclusion, and our member companies continuously innovate to provide services that benefit all of their users. A shift in policy and regulatory focus towards responsible use will allow users to enjoy the economic and societal benefits afforded by data analysis while better identifying harms such as discrimination.”