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Frontier Compliance: A Communication System Emerging in Cyberspace
Unformatted Document Text:  25 money and power want to see the application of rules in a way they see fit, and attempts for self-governance begin. Rule-makers such as outlaws who have become sheriffs and commercial entities who contributed to making the dispute resolution rules attempt to serve their own interests rather than community interests. As vigilante committees make hasty decisions, hang people, with not much due process or opportunities for an appeal, participants of the alternative domain name dispute resolution system provide quick and easy solutions without much procedural encumbrance or opportunities for appeal within the system. The myth of freedom and the romantic notion of self-regulation and self- governance do not seem to be so valid both in the West and in cyberspace. Evolving from the circumstances characterized by the frontier conditions defined in this article was rather a system of coercion and compliance. Then the questions remain as to whether we will continue to have this kind of system, whether it will displace the traditional methods of control, whether it will survive the unavoidable criticism, whether it will be displaced by the traditional, dominant system, and whether it will co-exist. A frontier is a place that at first seems infinite and unknown, but it eventually becomes confining and familiar. The West has obviously settled and assimilated with the old system. The story of Western settlement is ultimately described “as not one of lawlessness and violence, but that of the triumph of law and order, the taming of the West” (Lewis, 1996, p. 259). A difference we observe in cyberspace then might be that the domain name dispute resolution system, which exploited frontier conditions, seems to be stilling going on, seeming as if a vigilante system in cyberspace. And it may continue to do so, if something external comes in to stop it. But this is not surprising considering historical observation, as in the process of increasing conflict with the old system, and of the new system of self- appointed and self-enforced system being displaced by the old, eastern system composed of federal laws and officials, men in the West, “once given a taste of dispensing vigilantism, showed a marked reluctance to give it up” (Lewis, 1996, p. 266). Thus, whether we’ll continue to see this kind of communication system in cyberspace, or the system of frontier compliance will be tamed as was in the West by existing law and order, remains to be seen. The aim of this article regards less about exploring the possibility of change and transformation, which may depend largely on whether the conditions change or not. It regards more about identifying the features that characterize the system of communication that arises in a particular kind of conditions, i.e., frontier exigence in this case. This article also attempts to contribute to unveiling and describing the cyberspace governance as this system of self-governance and resulting compliance, and

Authors: Woo, Jisuk.
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money and power want to see the application of rules in a way they see fit, and attempts
for self-governance begin. Rule-makers such as outlaws who have become sheriffs and
commercial entities who contributed to making the dispute resolution rules attempt to
serve their own interests rather than community interests. As vigilante committees make
hasty decisions, hang people, with not much due process or opportunities for an appeal,
participants of the alternative domain name dispute resolution system provide quick and
easy solutions without much procedural encumbrance or opportunities for appeal within
the system. The myth of freedom and the romantic notion of self-regulation and self-
governance do not seem to be so valid both in the West and in cyberspace. Evolving
from the circumstances characterized by the frontier conditions defined in this article
was rather a system of coercion and compliance.
Then the questions remain as to whether we will continue to have this kind of
system, whether it will displace the traditional methods of control, whether it will
survive the unavoidable criticism, whether it will be displaced by the traditional,
dominant system, and whether it will co-exist. A frontier is a place that at first seems
infinite and unknown, but it eventually becomes confining and familiar. The West has
obviously settled and assimilated with the old system. The story of Western settlement
is ultimately described “as not one of lawlessness and violence, but that of the triumph
of law and order, the taming of the West” (Lewis, 1996, p. 259). A difference we
observe in cyberspace then might be that the domain name dispute resolution system,
which exploited frontier conditions, seems to be stilling going on, seeming as if a
vigilante system in cyberspace. And it may continue to do so, if something external
comes in to stop it. But this is not surprising considering historical observation, as in the
process of increasing conflict with the old system, and of the new system of self-
appointed and self-enforced system being displaced by the old, eastern system
composed of federal laws and officials, men in the West, “once given a taste of
dispensing vigilantism, showed a marked reluctance to give it up” (Lewis, 1996, p. 266).
Thus, whether we’ll continue to see this kind of communication system in cyberspace,
or the system of frontier compliance will be tamed as was in the West by existing law
and order, remains to be seen.
The aim of this article regards less about exploring the possibility of change and
transformation, which may depend largely on whether the conditions change or not. It
regards more about identifying the features that characterize the system of
communication that arises in a particular kind of conditions, i.e., frontier exigence in
this case. This article also attempts to contribute to unveiling and describing the
cyberspace governance as this system of self-governance and resulting compliance, and


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