Yesterday, Public Knowledge and Center for Rural Strategies filed comments on the Federal Communications Commission’s recent Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking on dismantling the agency’s consumer protections established in the 2015 and 2016 Technology Transitions Orders. The FCC voted to roll back a multitude of these consumer protections last fall.
Today, Congresswoman Anna Eshoo (D-CA) and Congressman David B. McKinley (R-WV) introduced the Broadband Conduit Deployment Act of 2018, which is substantially identical to the 2015 bill of the same name.
Public Knowledge welcomes Allie Bohm, Policy Counsel, to our team to focus on government affairs work in key issue areas including broadband policy, privacy, artificial intelligence, and other tech policy initiatives. She holds a J.D., magna cum laude, from Georgetown University Law Center, and a B.A., magna cum laude, in Peace & Justice Studies, English, and Dance from Tufts University.
Today, Senators Mark R. Warner (D-VA) and Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) introduced the Data Breach Prevention and Compensation Act to hold credit reporting agencies like Equifax accountable for data breaches that jeopardize consumer data.
Today, Public Knowledge sent a letter to Makan Delrahim, Assistant Attorney General for Antitrust Division of the Department of Justice, reiterating concerns raised by RCN and Senator Richard Blumenthal regarding Comcast’s compliance with the consent decree controlling its 2011 acquisition of NBC Universal. The consent decree is set to expire next year.
Today, Representative Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) introduced a bill in response to the Federal Communications Commission’s repeal of net neutrality last week. The bill would prevent Internet Service Providers from blocking and throttling online content, but would still allow for paid prioritization of content, and would remove almost all other FCC consumer protection authority over broadband networks.
Today, Senator Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.) announced plans to introduce a Congressional Review Act resolution to undo today’s Federal Communications Commission vote to roll back the agency’s 2015 net neutrality rules. The rules prevented broadband providers from blocking websites, throttling web traffic, or creating “fast lanes” only for those able to pay for prioritization. Joined by 15 senators, a CRA would restore the agency’s 2015 Open Internet Order, which the D.C. Circuit Court upheld not once, but twice. Public Knowledge commends Sen. Markey for continuing his efforts to protect net neutrality for all Americans.
Today, the Federal Communications Commission voted to approve a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking to modify or eliminate the 39 percent national audience reach cap that prevents broadcast stations from owning too much of the market. The NPRM will also seek comment on the UHF discount used by broadcast television station groups to calculate compliance with the audience reach cap.
Today, the Federal Communications Commission voted to adopt FCC Chairman Pai’s “Restoring Internet Freedom” proposal, walking away from the agency’s longstanding commitment to protecting the Open Internet and ensuring that broadband providers do not discriminate against internet content or services. Chairman Pai’s proposal to repeal the net neutrality rules is a deeply troubling and radical break from an almost 20 years of bipartisan FCC tradition of protecting the Open Internet.
Today, Walt Disney Co. announced a deal to acquire significant programming assets from 21st Century Fox Inc. The deal would unite two substantial content companies and mark the second media mega-merger to face antitrust scrutiny next year. Public Knowledge contends that this merger may pose harms to competition and consumers by further consolidating must-have programming assets and major motion picture studios, and ultimately leading to consumers paying higher prices for video content.
Today, Public Knowledge President Gene Kimmelman submitted a statement to the U.S. Senate Committee on the Judiciary’s Subcommittee on Antitrust, Competition, and Consumer Rights. His statement in the December 13 hearing on “The Consumer Welfare Standard in Antitrust: Outdated or a Harbor in a Sea of Doubt?” contends we need more than antitrust law to promote market competition that benefits consumers.
Today, the Federal Trade Commission and the Federal Communications Commission announced an agreement to coordinate consumer protections following the FCC’s Dec. 14 vote to roll back the agency’s net neutrality rules.
Today, Public Knowledge, joined by The Greenlining Institute, The Utility Reform Network, and National Association of State Utility Consumer Advocates, filed a Petition for Review with the Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. The petition asks the court to reverse and vacate the Federal Communications Commission’s November Order rolling back the agency’s consumer protections for Americans on legacy copper phone lines.
Today, Public Knowledge launched a new white paper, “Principles for Privacy Legislation: Putting People Back in Control of Their Information,” by Senior Vice President Harold Feld. The paper recommends four guiding principles for Congress to consider before crafting any online privacy legislation in order to create the strongest protections for consumers.
Amazon and Google are putting consumers in the middle of a corporate battle between the two technology giants. According to the reports, Google has blocked YouTube from the Amazon Echo Show, and will be removing its YouTube app from Amazon’s Fire TV. This is in response to Amazon refusing to carry certain Google hardware products in its store. Public Knowledge contends that this behavior by major platforms jeopardizes consumer choice.
Today, Public Knowledge joined 40 other consumer protection groups, digital divide advocates, and local government agencies -- including New York City -- in a letter urging Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai to delay the vote on the “Restoring Internet Freedom” Draft Order, which would roll back the agency’s net neutrality rules if adopted. Specifically, the groups propose the FCC delay the vote until a pending court case before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit -- the en banc review in Federal Trade Commission v. AT&T Mobility -- resolves.
Today, the Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai published the agency’s “Restoring Internet Freedom” draft Order that would roll back the agency’s 2015 Open Internet Order, which created strong net neutrality rules that force broadband providers to treat all internet content and services equally.
Today, the Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai circulated a “Restoring Internet Freedom” draft Order that would roll back the agency’s 2015 Open Internet Order, which created strong net neutrality rules that force broadband providers to treat all internet content and services equally.
Today, the Department of Justice filed a lawsuit against the proposed merger of AT&T and Time Warner. Public Knowledge supports this lawsuit because this $108 billion merger would harm the American public by inflating prices, harming competition, and reducing programming opportunities for diverse media voices.
Today, the Federal Communications Commission voted to approve a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking that proposes eliminating the mandatory reporting form (“Form 325”) the FCC uses to track cable prices and subscriber information. The FCC is required by law to report annually to Congress on both cable pricing and competition in the cable industry.
Today, the Federal Communications Commission voted to approve a Report and Order and Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking on adopting the ATSC 3.0 standard developed by the broadcast industry, termed “Next-Gen TV.”
Today, the Federal Communications Commission voted to approve an Order on Reconsideration and Notice of Proposed Rulemaking on media consolidation. This order eliminated rules that limit any one entity from owning too many newspaper, radio, and television entities within a local market. These rules were essential in helping to protect viewpoint diversity, locally created content, and competition.
Today, the Federal Communications Commission voted to approve a Fourth Report and Order, Order on Reconsideration, Memorandum Opinion and Order, Notice of Proposed Rulemaking, and Notice of Inquiry that would immediately eliminate affordable broadband choices for residents living on Tribal lands, and begin consideration of proposals that amount to an unprecedented rollback of America’s longstanding commitment to universal service and affordable basic telecommunications services for low-income families.
Today, the Federal Communications Commission voted to approve a Report and Order, Declaratory Ruling, and Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking and Order to roll back consumer protections established in the agency’s 2015 Technology Transitions Order.
Today the White House released the Vulnerabilities Equities Policy and Process (VEP) Charter. The Charter establishes a Vulnerabilities Equities Review Board to oversee the government’s disclosure of vulnerabilities that are not publicly known in information technology products and systems. Public Knowledge commends the government for increasing the transparency of its approach to disclosing hardware and software vulnerabilities.
Today, Senator Patrick Leahy (D-VT) introduced the Consumer Privacy Protection Act of 2017. The bill would place requirements on companies with sensitive consumer information, such as Equifax, to maintain safeguards to ensure the privacy and security of such data, and to notify consumers when that sensitive data is breached. Public Knowledge applauds Senator Leahy and the bill’s co-sponsors, including Senators Markey, Blumenthal, Wyden, Franken, Baldwin, and Harris for prioritizing consumer privacy in the wake of the Equifax security breach.
Today, Public Knowledge joined Communications Workers of America and 20 rural, consumer, civil rights, labor, and other groups in a letter urging Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai to retain the agency’s tech transitions rules that protect consumers while providers like Verizon transition from copper to fiber networks. The agency plans to roll back these consumer protections on November 16, effectively downgrading rural America.
According to reports, the Trump administration will withdraw an Obama administration Notice of Proposed Rulemaking that sought to install vehicle-2-vehicle technology called “dedicated short-range communications” (DSRC) in all future car models. Public Knowledge contends that withdrawing the proposal will make Americans more safe, as the driverless car technology currently poses both cybersecurity and privacy risks.
Today, Public Knowledge joined conservative groups -- including the Tea Party Patriots and Frontiers of Freedom -- in a letter to Attorney General Jeff Sessions requesting that the Department of Justice block or condition the proposed AT&T-Time Warner merger.
Today, the Federal Communications Commission voted to approve a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking to roll back portions of the agency’s 2015 3.5GHz licensing Order. Public Knowledge contends that this short-sighted policy making is completely unsupported by the record developed in multiple proceedings and undermines years of work to promote innovative and efficient use of limited spectrum resources.
Yesterday, Public Knowledge filed comments in the Federal Communications Commission’s recent inquiry addressing the state of competition in the market for the delivery of video programming. The agency is seeking input on the state of competition in the video marketplace -- an effort that can provide a foundation for future agency policymaking.
Recently, Public Knowledge, Consumer Federation of America, and New Networks Institute filed an amicus brief in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 8th Circuit requesting the Court to overturn and remand the Federal Communications Commission’s recent Business Data Services deregulation Order.
Today, the U.S. Senate plans to vote on Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai’s nomination to remain at the agency. Chairman Pai’s term expired in June 2016. Public Knowledge contends that Chairman Pai should not be confirmed due to his failure to protect consumers and promote competition.
Yesterday, Congresswoman Cheri Bustos (D-IL) and other House and Senate Democrats revealed a universal high-speed internet plan as part of the party’s “Better Deal” platform. The “Better Deal” internet plan aims to “bring high-speed internet to every farm, school, and neighborhood” across America, focusing on the less profitable rural and urban areas that have been left behind.
Today, the Federal Communications Commission voted to publish an annual report on the state of mobile wireless competition. The agency claims that the metrics assessed in the report indicate that there is “effective competition” in the marketplace for mobile wireless services. Public Knowledge disagrees with the report’s conclusion.
This week, Public Knowledge leads a group of public interest and racial justice allies in welcoming net neutrality advocates from across the United States to Washington, D.C. for a “Day of Advocacy.” More than 40 participants volunteered to share their stories in scheduled meetings with their representatives on Capitol Hill.
Today, Public Knowledge filed an amicus curiae brief in the case ASTM v. Public Resource. The case concerns Public Resource’s copying of model building codes and educational testing codes, which had been enacted into federal law and regulations.
Yesterday, Senator Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) introduced the Merger Enforcement Improvement Act, a bill that promotes merger enforcement and protects competition. Senator Klobuchar also introduced the Consolidation Prevention and Competition Promotion Act of 2017.
Today, Public Knowledge filed reply comments on the Federal Communications Commission’s recent Notice of Proposed Rulemaking to roll back the agency’s 2015 Open Internet Order, which created strong net neutrality rules prohibiting broadband providers from unfairly discriminating against particular online content and services.
Yesterday, Public Knowledge filed a Reply to the Opposition Sinclair and Tribune filed to Public Knowledge, Common Cause, and United Church of Christ, OC Inc.’s original Petition to Deny, which asked the FCC to stop the merger of those companies.
Yesterday, Public Knowledge, joined by Common Cause and United Church of Christ OC, Inc., filed a petition with the Federal Communications Commission asking the agency to deny the proposed merger of Sinclair Broadcast Group and Tribune Media. If approved, the purchase of Tribune Media’s 42 stations would enable Sinclair to reach 72 percent of U.S. households.
Recently, Civis Analytics released a competition poll that shows broad, bipartisan opposition to the proposed merger between AT&T and Time Warner. The poll found that “[t]he proposed merger between AT&T and Time Warner is opposed by 64 percent of Americans, including 65 percent of Democrats, 64 percent of Republicans, and 63 percent of Independents.”
Yesterday, the U.S. Senate passed several pieces of legislation focused on improving next-generation wireless networks and broadband infrastructure deployment, ensuring that rural areas have reliable voice services and protecting consumers from spoofing.
Today, Senators Maggie Hassan (D-NH) and Cory Gardner (R-CO) introduced the Advancing Innovation and Reinvigorating Widespread Access to Viable Electromagnetic Spectrum, or “AIRWAVES,” Act. The bill establishes a pipeline to move federal spectrum into commercial use, ensuring significant capacity for both exclusive use (“licensed”) spectrum and shared use (“unlicensed”) spectrum.
Public Knowledge welcomes Katie Watson, Development Manager, to our team to support our telecommunications, copyright and internet policy advocacy efforts by leading fundraising initiatives and events.
Today, the Information Sharing and Analysis Organization (ISAO) Standards Organization published “SP 4000: Protecting Consumer Privacy in Cybersecurity Information Sharing.” The publication is a set of best practices that organizations of all kinds should take to protect consumer privacy when they share cybersecurity information.
Today, Rep. Jim Sensenbrenner (R-Wis.) introduced the Transparency in Music Licensing and Ownership Act, which would establish an information database for musical works and sound recordings that users and services could search and would make music licensing more efficient.
Today, reports indicate that Verizon Wireless reduced connection speeds for mobile subscribers accessing streaming video services as part of a “video optimization” systems test. The company issued no warnings to consumers prior to testing, but claims “the customer video experience was not affected”.
Today, Sen. Tammy Duckworth (D-Ill.) introduced the Video Visitation and Inmate Calling in Prisons Act of 2017, which would clarify the Federal Communications Commission’s authority to cap intrastate inmate calling rates. The bill requires the agency to establish rules governing the procurement and use of video visitation and inmate calling services to make sure rates are “reasonable, fair and just”.
Recently, the United States Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer published a summary of the Trump Administration’s objectives for renegotiating the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). Public Knowledge finds that these objectives will harm American consumers and innovators.
Today, the Washington Center for Equitable Growth launched a new antitrust paper, “A Communications Oligopoly on Steroids: Why antitrust enforcement and regulatory oversight in digital communications matter,” by Public Knowledge President and CEO, Gene Kimmelman, and Consumer Federation of America’s research director, Mark Cooper.
Today, Public Knowledge will file comments on the Federal Communications Commission’s (FCC) recent Notice of Proposed Rulemaking to roll back the agency’s 2015 Open Internet Order, which created strong net neutrality rules that force broadband providers to treat all internet content and services equally. The FCC’s new proposal, if adopted later this year, would reverse the agency’s classification of broadband service as a “communications service” under Title II of the Communications Act, and reclassify broadband as a Title I “information service.” As the courts have previously found, the FCC may only impose rules against blocking, throttling, or paid prioritization of content if it classifies broadband as a Title II service.
Today, Public Knowledge joins public interest groups, websites, companies, trade associations, entrepreneurs, video creators, social media fans, and thousands of consumers in the world’s largest online protest to save the internet
Today, Microsoft announced the launch of its Rural Airband Initiative to bring high-speed broadband to 2 million people in rural America. The Airband Initiative relies on the TV white spaces (TVWS), an open spectrum technology similar to Wi-Fi (sometimes called “super Wi-Fi”).
Today, Public Knowledge joins public interest groups in welcoming Airbnb, Spotify, and Dropbox to the internet-wide “Day of Action to Save Net Neutrality” scheduled for July 12 to oppose the Federal Communications Commission’s plan to dismantle the agency’s landmark net neutrality rules.
Recently, Reps. Anna Eshoo (D-CA) and Susan Brooks (R-IN) introduced the “Promoting Good Cyber Hygiene Act of 2017.” The bill tasks the National Institute of Standards and Technology to work with the Federal Trade Commission and Department of Homeland Security to develop a list of voluntary cybersecurity best practices for both the federal government and private sector. Sens. Orrin Hatch (R-UT) and Ed Markey (D-MA) introduced the same bill this week.
Today, the U.S. Government Accountability Office published a report on the Federal Communications Commission’s Lifeline program’s application process. The GAO investigated multiple Lifeline providers and failed to confirm the eligibility of roughly a third of participants.
Today, the Federal Communications Commission approved a Notice of Inquiry on barriers to competitive broadband choices for consumers living in multi-tenant buildings. Public Knowledge has long supported prohibiting anti-competitive behavior and Commission efforts to remove barriers to deployment and facilitate greater choice for consumers in apartment and condominium buildings, shopping malls, and cooperatives.
Last night, President Trump announced his intention to nominate Jessica Rosenworcel to serve as a Member of the Federal Communications Commission. Public Knowledge applauds Ms. Rosenworcel for the nomination, particularly at a time when many of the pro-consumer initiatives she supported and promoted as an FCC Commissioner from 2012 - January 2017 are under siege today.
Today, Public Knowledge joined Consumer Federation of America, Center For Digital Democracy, Consumer Action, Consumer Federation of California, and Privacy Rights Clearinghouse in a letter urging Federal Trade Commission Acting Chairman Maureen Ohlhausen to protect consumer privacy.
Today, Public Knowledge announced plans to join with other internet advocacy groups and companies like Amazon and Reddit in an internet-wide day of action to preserve the Federal Communications Commission’s landmark net neutrality rules.
Today, a report by the Boston Globe mischaracterized Public Knowledge’s current evaluation of Rep. Marsha Blackburn’s (R-TN) “Balancing the Rights of Web Surfers Equally and Responsibly” (Browser) Act as “praise” for the proposed bill. Public Knowledge is concerned that the article may give the impression that we’ve endorsed the bill when we are currently evaluating it.
Today, the United States Supreme Court announced that patent owners may not override consumer ownership rights by license agreements. The decision in Impression Products v. Lexmark International applies to sales of patented products outside the United States.
Today, Public Knowledge launched a video showcasing Francis Ford Coppola’s recent letter to Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai asking him to preserve net neutrality rules for the arts community.
Today, the Federal Communications Commission voted to approve a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking to roll back the agency’s 2015 Open Internet Order, which created strong net neutrality rules that force broadband providers to treat all internet content and services equally. The FCC’s new proposal, if adopted later this year, would reverse the agency’s Title II classification of broadband service.
Today, Senators Brian Schatz (D-HI), Ron Johnson (R-WI) and Cory Gardner (R-CO), along with Representatives Ted Lieu (D-CA) and Blake Farenthold (R-TX), introduced the Protecting Our Ability to Counter Hacking (“PATCH”) Act.
Today, Comcast Corp. and Charter Communications announced an agreement to “explore potential opportunities for operational cooperation in… wireless businesses.” A major component of the deal includes an arrangement not to merge with or acquire another wireless company without the other party’s consent for one year.
Today, Sinclair Broadcast Group announced that it has entered into an agreement to acquire Tribune Media for an estimated $3.9 billion. Among other things, Sinclair and Tribune are both large broadcast companies that control TV stations in many local markets.
Today, comedian John Oliver defended the Federal Communications Commission’s 2015 Open Internet Order establishing net neutrality rules in an episode of “Last Week Tonight with John Oliver,” an HBO entertainment series. The episode marks a follow-up to the comedian’s popular June 2014 episode on net neutrality, which prompted millions of Americans to ask the FCC to create net neutrality rules.
Yesterday, Senator Mike Lee (R-UT) introduced legislation to nullify the Federal Communications Commission’s 2015 Open Internet Order establishing net neutrality rules. The bill, “Restoring Internet Freedom Act,” would also prohibit the agency from issuing similar rules in the future.
Today, the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals denied petitions asking the court to reconsider its decision upholding the Federal Communications Commission’s 2015 Open Internet Order. It declined to do so, with an opinion by Judges Srinivasan and Tatel reiterating why the arguments against the previous FCC’s actions are without merit.
Today, Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai announced a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking to reverse the agency’s Title II classification of broadband service, and to undo some and potentially all of the current net neutrality rules.
Rumors indicate that Federal Communications Commission Chairman Pai will soon announce a plan to roll back the agency’s landmark 2015 Open Internet Order. Public Knowledge urges President Trump to honor his campaign promises to put Americans before monopolies by preserving net neutrality rules as he nears the end of his first 100 days.
Today, the Federal Communications Commission approved a controversial Order deregulating incumbent pricing power in the business data services (“BDS”) market. BDS are high-capacity broadband connections purchased by businesses of all sizes as well as schools, libraries, and government agencies. The Order will permit incumbent telephone carriers to raise prices on business broadband customers across most of the United States.
Today, the Federal Communications Commission voted to adopt a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking aimed at “Accelerating Wireline Broadband Deployment by Removing Barriers to Infrastructure Investment.” It proposes reforms to pole attachments, and begins examining preemption of local and state barriers to broadband deployment. Bundled among these smaller issues, however, is an effort to potentially reverse the FCC’s Technology Transitions Order adopted in 2015.
Public Knowledge will host a press briefing Tuesday, April 18 at 1 p.m. ET to discuss the impact of the Federal Communications Commission's proposal to reduce competition in the $45 billion business data services market. A collection of consumer advocates, innovation experts and a trade association representing technology companies and smaller competitive network providers will participate in this press briefing. Speakers will highlight price hikes for consumers and small businesses, as well as the Order’s impact on 5G deployment.
Today, Public Knowledge launched a new video drawing attention to the growing list of giveaways by Congress and Federal Communications Commission Chairman Pai to large cable and telecommunications companies that act as local broadband monopolies.
Today, Public Knowledge, Consumer Federation of America and New America’s Open Technology Institute submitted comments to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s Notice of Proposed Rulemaking on mandating Direct Short Range Communication (DSRC) service for vehicle-to-vehicle (V2V) communications.
Today, reports surfaced that Federal Communications Commission Chairman Pai outlined his plans for rolling back the 2015 Open Internet Order that created strong net neutrality rules. These rules currently prevent broadband providers from blocking websites, throttling internet connections for subscribers and engaging in paid prioritization deals. Public Knowledge opposes any plan to repeal or weaken these rules.
Today, President Trump signed a bill dismantling online privacy protections created by the Federal Communications Commission’s 2016 Broadband Privacy Order by way of the Congressional Review Act. This bill not only terminates the FCC’s privacy rules but also prevents the agency from creating similar privacy protections in the future. The bill previously passed both the U.S. House of Representatives and Senate.
Today, reports indicate that the Federal Communications Commission voted to change a merger requirement that Charter Communications bring broadband competition to a million new households. The agency originally applied this requirement to Charter during the 2016 merger approval process for Charter, Time Warner Cable and Bright House Networks.
Today, Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai announced that the agency will soon initiate a proceeding to eliminate the existing streamlined process broadband providers follow to participate in the Lifeline program, and that he does not believe the Wireline Bureau should approve Lifeline Broadband Provider applications.
Today, the House Judiciary Committee is scheduled to consider H.R. 1695, the “Register of Copyrights Selection and Accountability Act of 2017.” The bill would take away the power of the Librarian of Congress to appoint the Register of Copyrights, and transfer that power to the President, subject to Senate confirmation. Public Knowledge opposes H.R. 1695 as presently written.
Today, the United States House of Representatives voted to pass a joint resolution dismantling online privacy protections created by the Federal Communications Commission’s 2016 Broadband Privacy Order by way of the Congressional Review Act.