This Week in Entrepreneurship Policy: Zero Stars, Digital Data Flows and More

twiep techAs Yelp, Trip Advisor and other consumer review sites have become increasingly influential, businesses have sought ways to game the system. Following the recent introduction of the Consumer Review Freedom Act, the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation will take a closer look at the issue – and it is only one of a number of hearings scheduled for the week ahead. 

According to the hearing notice, the bill would prohibit the use of non-disparagement clauses referred to as “gag clauses” that some are using to intimidate and/or pursue fines from customers for negative but honest reviews of their services.

Meanwhile, Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen makes an appearance before the House Financial Services Committee and several House committees tackle the issue of digital data flows as well as their security.

Other topics covered by committee hearings and meetings this week include:  regulatory predictability, the renewable fuels standard, energy security, Census data and more. 

JOINT

Ensuring Success for the Social Security Disability Insurance Program and Its Beneficiaries
Joint Economic Committee
106 Dirksen Senate Office Building
Wednesday, Nov. 4
2:30 pm 

HOUSE

International Data Flows: Promoting Digital Trade in the 21st Century
House Committee on the Judiciary
Subcommittee on Courts, Intellectual Property, and the Internet
2141 Rayburn HOB
Tuesday, Nov. 3
1:00 pm

Examining the EU Safe Harbor Decision and Impacts for Transatlantic Data Flows
House Committee on Energy and Commerce
Subcommittee on Communications and Technology
Subcommittee on Commerce, Manufacturing and Trade
2123 Rayburn HOB
Tuesday, Nov. 3
10:00 am 

Regulatory Predictability for Business Growth Act of 2015
House Committee on the Judiciary
Subcommittee on Regulatory Reform, Commercial and Antitrust Law
2141 Rayburn HOB
Tuesday, Nov. 3
10:00 am 

Preparing for the 2020 Census: Will the Technology be Ready?
House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform
Subcommittee on Government Operations
Subcommittee on Information Technology
2154 Rayburn HOB
Tuesday, Nov. 3
2:00 pm

Renewable Fuel Standard: A Ten Year Review of Costs and Benefits
House Committee on Science, Space and Technology
Subcommittee on Oversight
Subcommittee on Environment
2318 Rayburn HOB
Tuesday, Nov. 3
10:00 am 

Examining VA’s Information Technology Systems that Provide Economic Opportunities for Veterans
House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs
Subcommittee on Economic Opportunity
Tuesday, Nov. 3
334 Cannon HOB
2:00 pm

An Examination of Continued Challenges in VA’s Vets First Verification Process
House Committee on Small Business
Subcommittee on Contracting and the Workforce
House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs
Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations
334 Cannon HOB
Wednesday, Nov. 4
10:30 am

Semi-Annual Testimony on the Federal Reserve’s Supervision and Regulation of the Financial System
House Committee on Financial Services
2128 Rayburn HOB
Wednesday, Nov. 4
10:00 am   

Examining the Costly Failures of Obamacare’s CO-OP Insurance Loans
House Committee on Energy and Commerce
Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations
2123 Rayburn HOB
Thursday, Nov. 5
10:15 am

Energy Security Roundtable
House Committee on Energy and Commerce
Subcommittee on Energy and Power
2123 Rayburn HOB
Thursday, Nov. 5
10:00 am 

Regulatory Overload: The Effects of Federal Regulations on Small Firms
House Committee on Small Business
Subcommittee on Investigations, Oversight and Regulations
North Las Vegas City Hall, Council Chambers (Field Hearing)
2250 N. Las Vegas Blvd., North Las Vegas, NV
Friday, Nov. 6
2:00 pm 

SENATE 

Data Brokers – Is Consumers’ Information Secure?
Senate Committee on the Judiciary
Subcommittee on Privacy, Technology and the Law
226 Dirksen Senate Office Building
Tuesday, Nov. 3
2:30 pm 

Zero Stars: How Gagging Honest Reviews Harms Consumers and the Economy
Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation
253 Russell Senate Office Building
Wednesday, Nov. 410:00 am

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