Public Knowledge Statement on House Cellphone Unlocking Bill Passage

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Today, the House passed HR 1123, the Unlocking Consumer Choice and Wireless Competition Act, on suspension. Public Knowledge supported a previous version of the bill that did not draw a distinction between cell phone unlocking and bulk cell phone unlocking. 

The following can be attributed to Sherwin Siy, Vice President of Legal Affairs at Public Knowledge:  

"We're glad that the bill will allow Americans to unlock their phones. However, language recently added to the bill could be interpreted to make future unlocking efforts more difficult. We're disappointed that the House was unable to reach a compromise that would have prevented such barriers and still met the objectives of helping consumers.  

"It's clear that more needs to be done to prevent copyright law from interfering with consumers' rights and picking winners and losers between business models. There is bipartisan support for such an approach to reform and we're hopeful that the bill will be improved in the Senate. 

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