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Colston E. Warne Lecture: Consumer Protection 2.0—Protecting Consumers in the 21st Century


  • This commentary is developed from the Colston E. Warne Lecture that was presented at the 2010 annual conference of the American Council on Consumer Interests.


The consumer advocacy movement has achieved many successes in the past one hundred years or more but still faces pushback from powerful special interests, including preemption of state authority, and contractual limits, such as arbitration, restricting private enforcement. Further, since laws have not kept up with changes in the financial marketplace, new financial transaction protections are needed. This commentary proposes new approaches for improving consumer protection and giving new tools to consumer advocates, both on and off the Internet, and examines the battle to enact a Consumer Financial Protection Agency.