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Formatting Requirements in Draft Uniform Electronic Transactions Act

From: Winchel 'Todd' Vincent, III <winchel@mindspring.com>
Date: Mon, 19 Apr 1999 11:53:02 -0400
Message-ID: <006501be8a7c$b49edb00$919f6083@efile1nt.gsu.edu>
To: "Dsig group" <w3c-xml-sig-ws@w3.org>
To everyone who attended the W3C Signed XML Workshop in Boston last week,
thank you for an extremely enlightening meeting.

During the meeting, I mentioned a legal debate that took place at a recent
drafting session of the Uniform Electronic Transaction Act (UETA) regarding
formatting requirements for certain legal (consumer) notices.  The following
summary is taken from an email written by John D. Gregory, General Counsel,
Policy Branch, Ministry of the Attorney General (Ontario).  I thought you
might find it interesting.

The purpose of the (UETA) is to clarify or amend traditional paper-based law
to facilitate electronic transactions (I'm not sure it accomplishes its
purpose well, but that debate is for another list).  As it is currently
written, the UETA will apply to all "business, commercial, and government
transactions" subject to certain exceptions.

>
> 103(d) says that the Act does not affect a law relating to a specific
> method of delivery or display of information [formatting].  This provision
was hotly
> debated.  It had been originally seen as about rules for posting or
> publishing info in particular ways.  Would it retain the legal effect of
> statutes requiring, for example, a certain font size for documents?  If
> so, would its usefulness not be seriously undermined?  Others felt that
> legislatures would not want to pass a statute that undermined in its turn
> all the (consumer protection) measures about mandatory writing, size,
> conspicuousness etc.  The provision was extensively reworded but its
> intent was maintained.
>

Winchel "Todd" Vincent III
Attorney and Technical Researcher
Georgia State University
The Center for Digital Commerce and College of Law
Phone: (404) 651-4297
Fax: (404) 651-2092
Email: winchel@mindspring.com
Web: http://gsulaw.gsu.edu/gsuecp/
Received on Monday, 19 April 1999 11:51:27 EDT

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