The future of online dispute resolution (ODR) - or online alternative dispute resolution, as the United Nations Centre for Trade Facilitation and Electronic Business (UN/CEFACT) describes it - seems assured in a world where cyber trade and cyber commerce increase day by day. The interest and involvement of the UN establishes the importance of ODR.
If proof were needed of the inevitable increase in the use of ODR, it can be found in the success of consumer online dispute resolution systems such as that operated by SquareTrade on behalf of eBay. Further proof can be seen in the more complex areas of international trade and international intellectual property, through the success of the DOCDEX system of the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) and the Domain Name Dispute Resolution system of the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO).
Moreover, in November 2005 the ICC launched NetCase, a platform for the conduct of ICC arbitrations in an online environment. NetCase enables all participants in an arbitration to keep in touch 24 hours a day from any...