Last week, Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai and Federal Trade Commission Acting Chairwoman Maureen Ohlhausen co-wrote an op-ed for the Washington Post entitled “No, Republicans didn’t just strip away your Internet privacy rights.” The team at Public Knowledge was troubled by the misinformation laid out in this op-ed. Issues like broadband privacy and net neutrality have serious long-term consequences, so we felt it was important to correct the record.
Today, Public Knowledge (PK) publishes a substantive analysis of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP). While PK does not take a position on whether trade agreements in general are good or bad as a matter of public policy, we do evaluate whether individual trade agreements affect PK’s ability to promote its mission. If an agreement benefits our policy goals we will support it, and if it undermines our mission we will oppose it. It is true, however, that PK has consistently decried the lack of openness and transparency surrounding the negotiation of trade agreements and has recommended significant reforms to the process of deliberating trade policy to give the public a more meaningful voice in evaluating the elements of trade agreements before they are completed.
Earlier this month, the Organisation of Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) Committee on Digital Economy Policy (CDEP) held its 71st meeting, from March 29th to April 1st in Paris. Delegates from member countries and stakeholder representatives agreed to set up several milestones that will have mid- and long-term impacts upon the digital economy policies of the OECD member countries and partners.
Today, the Federal Communications Commission unveiled a labeling system for consumer broadband, developed by the Commission’s Consumer Advisory Committee with support from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. The sample labels and format closely mirror the widely recognizable food nutritional labels, and seek to provide consumers with information they need to evaluate various broadband service options. The labels provide clarity and certainty for broadband providers, as adopting them for use both at point of sale and online will presumptively satisfy the Commission’s transparency requirements under the 2015 Open Internet Order.
The 2015 World Radiocommunication Conference (WRC-15), which Public Knowledge has been closely monitoring, officially commenced this week in Geneva, Switzerland. Throughout the month of November, the decisions to govern our communications via airwaves – such as mobile broadband and public disaster radio communications – will be written into an international treaty called the Radio Regulations (RRs).