and I. INTRODUCTION As we move into the 21st century, there is little doubt that the Internet will increasingly play a greater role in our lives. With the cost of computer hardware and software falling and with governments moving towards the provision of infrastructure to enable their citizens to enjoy the wonders of cyberspace, the possibility of the world being linked together by the Internet may no longer seem remote. Any observer would have noted, however, that Internet commerce has been mercilessly wretched in recent years. Many leading online businesses, such as eToys, have collapsed.' News items like these might not have been much of a surprise had it not been for earlier convictions that online retail would capture the major share of consumer spending and overtake the huge brick-and-mortar retail industry. The unexpected burst of the dot-com bubble has made many take a step back to reassess the long-term profitability prospects of online companies. The disillusionment with online business need not mean that the string of new possibilities that electronic commerce (e-commerce) can provide has prematurely reached its end. After all, other online businesses, such as eBay, are still in good shape.-' Online commerce is only in
Journal of World Investment and Trade – Brill
Published: Jan 1, 1
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