In the past two decades, the concept of disruptive technology has gone from theory, to buzz word, to the captivation of the popular imagination. Disruptive innovation goes beyond improving existing products; it seeks to tap unforeseen markets, create products to solve problems consumers don't know that they have, and ultimately to change the face of industry. We are all the beneficiaries of disruption. Every smartphone carrying, MP3-listening, Netflix-watching consumer is taking advantage of technologies once unimaginable, but that now feel indispensable. Silicon Valley's pursuit of disruption will continue to benefit and delight a world of consumers. But where disruption may once have been the secondary result of innovation, disruption has become a goal in and of itself. Today, I want to urge a cautionary note: The tech community's solipsistic focus on disruption, to the exclusion of human and legal values, can be problematic. We can see these potential problems in the development of three areas: mass surveillance, 3D printing, and driverless cars.
102 Geo. L.J. 1685 (2013-2014)
Scholarly Commons Citation
Katyal, Neal K., "Disruptive Technologies and the Law" (2014). Georgetown Law Faculty Publications and Other Works. 1878.