Today, reports indicate that the Department of Justice is investigating alleged collusion between AT&T and Verizon at GSMA, a standards-setting body. The alleged collusion would make it more difficult for consumers to move from one carrier to another.
Today, we’re happy to announce our newest white paper, “Securing the Modern Economy: Transforming Cybersecurity Through Sustainability,” by Public Knowledge Cybersecurity Policy Director Megan Stifel. The paper argues that the current approach to cybersecurity -- compliance-based and narrowly-focused risk management -- has failed to protect the online ecosystem as well as public trust in technology and the internet. Enter: cybersecurity sustainability.
Today, FCC Commissioner Mignon Clyburn announced her resignation after almost a decade of experience serving at the agency. She has staunchly protected consumers, net neutrality, and the economically and socially disenfranchised during her tenure.
Today, the Federal Communications Commission voted to approve a Report and Order and Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking that will adopt new measures to ensure that calls are completed in rural America. Public Knowledge supports the quick action by the FCC but cautions against removing reporting requirements until the Commission knows the rural call completion problem is solved.
Today, the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit issued a ruling in the ongoing Oracle v. Google litigation. The case involves the Java programming language’s application programming interface (“API”). First, the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit overturned the district court and ruled that Oracle could assert a copyright over this API. Public Knowledge disagreed with this ruling.
Last week, Public Knowledge filed reply comments on the Federal Communications Commission’s recent Notice of Proposed Rulemaking and Notice of Inquiry entitled, “Bridging the Digital Divide for Low-Income Consumers.” The NPRM & NOI propose to eliminate affordable broadband choices for millions of low-income and vulnerable families that participate in the Lifeline program.
Recently, reports surfaced that Cambridge Analytica, a political consulting firm that supported President Trump’s campaign, maintained copies of private data for about 50 million Facebook users without the majority of these users’ knowledge or consent. Public Knowledge finds Facebook’s lack of consumer privacy protection particularly egregious in this case and urges Congress to protect consumers by returning control of personal data to Americans.
Recently, bipartisan leadership of the Senate Judiciary and Foreign Relations Committees, Chairmen Chuck Grassley (R-IA) and Bob Corker (R-TN), as well as Ranking Members Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) and Bob Menendez (D-NJ), introduced the Marrakesh Treaty Implementation Act (S. 2559).
Recently, Sen. Mark R. Warner (D-VA), Vice Chairman of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, urged policymakers to develop a national cybersecurity strategy at the South by Southwest Conference (SXSW). Sen. Warner asked lawmakers to reexamine software liability terms and use federal purchasing power to drive minimum security standards for Internet of Things devices in formulating such a strategy.
Today, Consumer Federation of America, in collaboration with Public Knowledge, published a paper explaining why the government’s case against the AT&T-Time Warner merger is both warranted and consistent with past enforcement practices. The paper also demonstrates the necessity of the case to prevent possible coordination among dominant firms that would likely thwart the development and expansion of innovative online video platforms as well as cheaper alternatives to traditional cable and satellite services.
Today, Sen. Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) introduced the Inmate Calling Technical Corrections Act of 2018, which would clarify the Federal Communications Commission’s authority to cap intrastate inmate calling rates and address a market failure to protect American families who communicate with prisoners, inmates and detainees.
Today, Public Knowledge sent a letter to the Senate Judiciary Committee’s Chairman Chuck Grassley (R-IA) and Ranking Member Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), and to the House Judiciary Committee’s Chairman Bob Goodlatte (R-VA) and Ranking Member Jerrold Nadler (D-NY).
Today, the full Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals issued its Federal Trade Commission v. AT&T Mobility decision, determining that the FTC still has the authority to bring enforcement actions against companies regulated by the Federal Communications Commission for their “non-common carrier” activities.
Today, the Federal Register published the Federal Communications Commission’ “Restoring Internet Freedom” Order. The Order rolls back the agency’s net neutrality rules, and abandons the agency’s longstanding, bipartisan commitment to broadband oversight, including protecting the Open Internet and ensuring that internet service providers do not discriminate against online content or services. Public Knowledge is filing suit in federal court to challenge this action today.
Recently, Public Knowledge filed a protective petition in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit to protect its rights in the event that, as happened in previous litigation, the multidistrict lottery was conducted early. The multidistrict lottery determines which court Federal Communications Commission appeals may be heard in when challenges are filed in multiple courts.
Today, Rep. Leonard Lance (NJ-R) and Rep. Mike Doyle (PA-D) introduced the Advancing Innovation and Reinvigorating Widespread Access to Viable Electromagnetic Spectrum, or “AIRWAVES,” Act. The AIRWAVES Act is the House companion to S.1682.
Public Knowledge will host a briefing on privacy legislation February 5 from 2 - 3 p.m. at the Dirksen Senate Office Building. The briefing, “Privacy Protections in the Post-Equifax Era,” will outline privacy legislation expected for 2018 and review lessons learned from the 2017 Equifax data breach.
Today, AT&T placed full-page advertisements in various papers urging Congress to pass an “Internet Bill of Rights” to “provide consistent rules of the road for all internet companies.” Public Knowledge contends that Americans had strong, consistent net neutrality rules until Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai repealed them, and finds AT&T’s vague commitments insufficient for a bill.
Yesterday, Public Knowledge filed comments on the Federal Communications Commission’s recent Public Notice on the agency’s 2017 hurricane season response efforts. The FCC’s Public Safety and Homeland Security Bureau sought comments on how to improve the agency’s response to natural disasters with a focus on repairing telecommunications infrastructure damaged by Hurricanes Maria and Irma last year.
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.