Colin Rule: Online Dispute Resolution and the Future of the Internet

May 4-5, 2012
19th Annual Northwest Dispute Resolution Conference

3.5 Online Dispute Resolution and the Future of the Internet

Colin Rule, CEO,, San Jose, CA

Saturday, May 5, 2012 8:30 a.m. – 10:00 a.m.

More than 60 million disputes are filed online each year around the world, and that number is growing every month. As society becomes increasingly computer literate, disputants expect neutrals will use the latest information and communication technologies to help them resolve their disagreements. Online mediation changes many aspects of the dispute resolution process and offers both advantages and disadvantages. In this innovative session, Colin Rule, eBay and PayPal’s first Director of Online Dispute Resolution and author of Online Dispute Resolution for Business, will address both the power and pitfalls of marrying technology with ADR. Participants will learn about best practices across the industry, the latest online dispute resolution tools and the challenges of designing and implementing online dispute resolution systems. This entry-level workshop welcomes non-geeks: no prior technology experience is required. If you are interested in learning how to apply online dispute resolution tools and techniques that will likely become mainstream in the near future, then this session is for you.

Participants are encouraged to bring their wifi-capable laptops to this session.

Colin Rule has worked at the intersection of technology and conflict resolution for the last two decades. He is CEO of, an online dispute resolution service provider in Silicon Valley, and Co-Chair of the Advisory Board of the National Center for Technology and Dispute Resolution at UMass-Amherst. From 2003 to 2011 he served as eBay and PayPal's first director of Online Dispute Resolution, designing and implementing systems that now resolve more than 60 million disputes each year.

Mr. Rule is the author of Online Dispute Resolution for Business, published by Jossey-Bass in September 2002. He has presented and trained around the world for organizations including the U.S. Department of State, UNCITRAL, the International Chamber of Commerce, and the CPR Institute for Dispute Resolution, as well as teaching at UMass-Amherst, Stanford, Southern Methodist University, and Hastings College of the Law. He has written and been interviewed extensively about the Internet since 1999, with columns and articles appearing in ACResolution, Consensus, Dispute Resolution Magazine, and Peace Review. He holds a master's degree from Harvard University's Kennedy School of Government in conflict resolution and technology, a B.A. in peace studies from Haverford College, and he served as a Peace Corps volunteer in Eritrea from 1995-1997.

All 2012 workshops. On-line registrationConference brochure.

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