Proceedings of The 4th International Conference on Future of Social Sciences
Competition and Responsibility for the Actions of Third Parties in Traditional and Modern Information Intermediaries
Paulina Schindler, Johannes Ruhland
Information intermediaries play an important role in communication by filtering the available flood of information for the recipient. They can take both traditional and modern forms differentiated by their connection to the Internet. Because external factors can shape these intermediaries, possible differences are examined in terms of competition and responsibility for the actions of third parties from an international perspective. In each category, four subcategories are used to compare the situation of traditional and modern information intermediaries. Market share, revenue, market structure and growth are examined in the “competition” category. For “responsibility for the actions of third parties” the aspects degree of content control, voluntary enforcement, collateral censorship and user empowerment are examined. A simple scoring system is used to visualize the perceived strength of change in each category and its subcategories. Possible strengths of change are weak, moderate and strong. It is hypothesized that there would be at least moderate change in both categories to reflect that the external factors around information intermediaries have changed significantly. This was confirmed. It is found that the change in the competition category could be described as strong, especially when considering revenue and growth. In responsibility for the actions of third parties, the change is moderate, strongest in degree of content control and user empowerment. Thus, strong changes have taken place between traditional and modern information intermediaries.
keywords: Intermediaries, Comparison, Scoring, Competition, Responsibility.