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FTC

Before Congress, FCC Chairman Ajit Pai Defends 5 Percent Budget Cut and Changes to Net Neutrality Rules

WASHINGTON, June 21, 2017 — Cuts in the Federal Communications Commission budget won’t hinder the agency’s ability to provide services because the agency is entirely funded by fees, Republican FCC Chairman Ajit Pai told senators on Tuesday during a Senate Appropriations subcommittee hearing to examine the Commission’s Fiscal Year 2018 budget request. “[W]e have compiled… Keep Reading

Intellectual Property

Drew Clark: Why a Well-Functioning Intellectual Property System Needs to Strike Down Bad Patents

Editor's Note: This past week, Drew Clark's column in the Deseret News of Salt Lake City, Utah, was on the importance of balance in our patent system. Click here for links to all of his Deseret News columns. ASPEN, Colo. — As with many former mining camps in the Rocky Mountains, this one is best known for winter sports like skiing. But this mountain town has also developed a summertime niche: Hosting policy-makers seeking the cool air refuge from humid Washington summers. This year, the refreshing breeze came in from the new head of the United States Patent and Trademark Office. For nearly 20 years, Aspen in late August has been home to a small but influential gathering of the Technology Policy Institute. It gathers legislators, regulators, lobbyists and academics who seek to shape the course of policy surrounding information and communications technology. 1586118 [more...] Keep Reading

Speaking at Federal Trade Commission, Obama Urges Internet Privacy Legislation for Consumers and Students

WASHINGTON, January 12, 2015 – President Barack Obama on Monday announced that his administration would push for two new pieces of federal internet privacy legislation, one pertaining to consumers and one pertaining to students. He also announced that the Department of Education would offer new tools to help students and teacher help protect their privacy.… Keep Reading

FCC/Media/Media ownership/Wireless

Broadband Roundup: FTC Against Public Utility Broadband Regulation, Holder Slaps Tech Industry, and FCC Video News

WASHINGTON, October 2, 2014 ­- Federal Trade Commissioner Maureen Ohlhausen warned that reclassifying broadband under public utility regulation including in Title II of the Communications Act would put ISPs beyond the legal reach of the FTC, the Washington Post reported. The item was previously reported in Broadband Breakfast. Currently, the FTC is not able to… Keep Reading

FCC/Fiber/Net Neutrality/Wireless

Broadband Roundup: FTC a Loser Under Title II, Rural Gigabit Projects, and Wireless Sponsored Data

WASHINGTON, September 23, 2014 – In a filing with the Federal Communications Commission, the Federal Trade Commission noted that some of its regulatory authority would be lost if the FCC decided to regulate broadband as a public utility. The FTC protects the privacy and security of consumer data by imposing obligations on broadband service providers… Keep Reading

FCC

Broadband Roundup: More Action on Connect America Fund, FTC versus FCC, NSA Surveillance Continues

WASHINGTON, June 23, 2014 – The Federal Communications Commission announced that its open meeting on July 11 will center on closed captioning of internet protocol-delivered video clips, the Connect America Fund’s rural broadband expansion, and modernizing E-Rate to deliver digital learning. Tom Wheeler explained more about the E-Rate modernization plan in a blog post on… Keep Reading

Broadband Roundup: Data Brokerage Industry in the Hot Seat, Library and Education Group Want More E-Rate Funds

WASHINGTON, May 28, 2014 – The National Journal reported that the Federal Trade Commission released a report charging the data brokerage industry with collecting “troves” of information on nearly all American consumers. The agency urged Congress to push for more transparency. Believing that an invasive collection of personal data could harm consumers, the FTC recommended… Keep Reading

Rising Tide of Data Uses From Wireless Devices Forcing Changes in Internet Usage Patterns, Say Experts at Broadband Breakfast Club

WASHINGTON, February 20, 2013 – Policy-makers and consumers alike are struggling to grapple with a rising-tide of data usage from wireless devices, according to the chief of the Federal Communications Commission’s wireless bureau and panelists speaking at the Broadband Breakfast Club on Tuesday at Clyde’s of Gallery Place. Panelists noted the challenges that data caps… Keep Reading

Agency Heads Appear Before Congress to Tackle Privacy Issues

WASHINGTON July 18, 2011- Two congressional subcommittees called on the heads of several government agencies late last week to inquire how each addresses Internet privacy issues. The panel, assembled by the Subcommittee on Commerce, Manufacturing, and Trade and the Subcommittee on Communications and Technology included the heads of the Federal Communications Commission, Federal Trade Commission and the National Telecommunications and Information Administration. Keep Reading

Cybersecurity/Privacy

FTC and DOJ Forum: Child ID Theft By Family Members Most Damaging

WASHINGTON, July 13, 2011 – Child ID Theft more commonly occurs via organized crime, but the most severe damage happens when done by family members, experts concluded at a joint Child ID Theft forum Tuesday. Federal Trade Commission and Department of Justice held the forum one day after hacktivist group ‘Anonymous’ attacked U.S. government security contractor, Booz Allen Hamilton, resulting in the theft of 90,000 military email addresses. Keep Reading

FCC and FTC Deregulation Under Review As Key to Job Growth

WASHINGTON, July 7, 2011 – What was originally billed as a federal agency confessional before House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations on Thursday turned into a search to create American jobs and economic growth. Monday, the subcommittee held its fourth hearing to improve the regulatory review system. With the national unemployment rate at 9.1 percent, burdensome regulations from federal agencies are seen by both sides of the aisle and agency representatives to contribute to the problem. An Executive Order the President issued in January sought to streamline federal agencies by having them do a retrospective review of existing regulations and discard those they determined outdated and unnecessary. Keep Reading

House Subcommittee Debates Cyber Theft Measure

WASHINGTON, June 16, 2011 – Just days after Senate email accounts were hacked, the House Subcommittee on Commerce, Manufacturing and Trade held a hearing Wednesday to discuss a draft bill that would require companies to minimize the amount of data collected from consumers and notify them within two days of a data breach. Subcommittee members met with witnesses to clarify the ambiguous language of a discussion draft of Subcommittee Chairman Rep. Mary Bono Mack’s (R-CA) Secure and Fortify (SAFE) Data Act. The measure addresses the increasing threat of data theft, in the wake of high-profile cyber attacks on Sony, Epsilon, Lockheed-Martin and other U.S. companies. Keep Reading

Genachowski Addresses Economic Club of Washington

WASHINGTON April 21, 2011- Federal Communications Commission Chairman Julius Genachowski visited the Economic Club of Washington Wednesday to answer questions that covered spectrum auctions and the impending merger between AT&T and T-Mobile. “To continue our growth in mobile broadband we need to free up more spectrum,” Genachowski said. “Spectrum is the oxygen of the mobile world and without more it will be stifled.” Keep Reading

Connecting America, Chapter 4: ‘Broadband Competition and Innovation Policy’

Twenty-five years ago, the World Wide Web did not exist. Very few Americans had even seen a mobile phone, and broadband networks were available only to a few businesses and research institutions. Today, innovations such as broadband and others like it drive the creation of a wide variety of products and services. The competitive forces that sparked these breakthroughs need to be nurtured so that the United States can continue to reap the benefits of its unrivaled culture of innovation. Keep Reading

Broadband's Impact

Telecom and Consumer Pioneer Mary Gardner Jones Dies; Founded Alliance for Public Technology

WASHINGTON, January 5, 2010 - Mary Gardiner Jones, the first female Federal Trade Commissioner and co-founder of the Alliance for Public Technology, died on December 23, 2009, APT announced Tuesday. “Mary Gardiner Jones not only tore down walls that kept women out of positions of power and influence - she smashed them to smithereens.” That was how former Labor Secretary Robert Reich described the career of Gardiner Jones. She advocated for increased consumer protections and women's rights. Keep Reading

Wireless

Wireless Industry Complaints Closely Related to Competition, Say Panelists

WASHINGTON, December 14, 2009 – What’s the greatest source of dissatisfaction in the mobile wireless industry? Ironically, according to industry experts and government representatives attending a conference on customer complaints, it is competition itself. The size and pervasiveness of the mobile device market has exploded. In the space of just 17 years, the number of active mobile subscribers in the United States has exploded from 11 million to 276 million. An increased number of complaints have accompanied this market growth. Keep Reading

Broadband's Impact/Privacy

Advocate Alleges ‘Racial Labeling’ in Targeted Online Ads

WASHINGTON, December 9, 2009 - The ubiquity of online advertising is a product of its importance to the internet economy, said a group of consumer advocates Wednesday during a debate on the future of online advertising. But the impact of new targeted advertising methods on consumer privacy and its potential to manipulate online experiences was the subject of heated argument at the event, sponsored by the Information Technology and Innovation Foundation. Keep Reading

Broadband's Impact

Lawmaker Weighs Government Intervention In The Media

WASHINGTON, December 2, 2009 - A senior lawmaker on Wednesday weighed in on government intervention in the media at a Federal Trade Commission forum convened to consider an alleged decreasing amount of original reporting taking place, as media outlets shut down or layoff journalists in the face of falling revenues. The widespread availability of broadband technology plays an important role both in the alleged problem – competition to traditional print media revenue streams – and in the proposed solution: widespread availability of online content funded through a variety of means. Keep Reading

Broadband's Impact

At FTC, Experts Address The Troubled State Of Journalism and the Internet

WASHINGTON, December 1, 2009 - Experts from the private sector, nonprofit groups and the government gathered Tuesday at the Federal Trade Commission for the start of a two-day workshop focused on the troubled state of the media industry and how the business models will change going forward. “Since the beginning of our Republic, journalism has been essential to making democracy work,” FTC Chairman Jon Leibowitz said (PDF) in opening remarks. His point is largely agreed upon by many involved in discussions centered around the media. But there is not a consensus on how media business models will evolve down the road or on whether the government should become more involved in the industry. Keep Reading

Agenda for FTC Workshop of Fate of Journalism Features Murdoch and Huffington

The Federal Trade Commission on Tuesday released the agenda and speakers for its upcoming workshop, “From Town Criers to Bloggers: How Will Journalism Survive the Internet Age?” The workshop has been organized to consider the emerging issues of an increasingly internet oriented society. As more consumers turn to the internet for news and information, print news organizations have begun to struggle with the declining ad market. Besides the simple economics of the matter, as online news expands many wonder how the two news formats can successfully coexist. Keep Reading

Bloggers Covered by Endorsement Rules, Says FTC

The Federal Trade Commission on Monday announced that it has approved final revisions to the guidance it gives to advertisers on how to keep their endorsement and testimonial ads in line with the FTC Act. The notice incorporates several changes to the FTC’s “Guidelines Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising,” which address endorsements by consumers, experts, organizations, and celebrities, as well as the disclosure of important connections between advertisers and endorsers. The guidelines were last updated in 1980. Keep Reading

Broadband Updates

Gathering Signs of Privacy Winds

Notwithstanding a recent proposal by the online advertising industry to strengthen standards governing consumer data collection, some on Capitol Hill still see a need for Congress to enact comprehensive privacy legislation. Indeed, Rep. Rick Boucher, D-Va., has promised to introduce legislation on this subject this fall. Over at the Federal Trade Commission, Chairman Jon Leibowitz has explicitly warned online advertisers that the FTC will take a regulatory approach if industry does not improve its self-policing efforts. Keep Reading

Net Neutrality

Freshman Representative Pushes Broadband Cap Ban

WASHINGTON, June 18, 2009 - Time Warner Cable found itself clashing with a member of Congress from its home state on Wednesday as Rep. Eric Massa, D-N.Y., introduced the Broadband Internet Fairness Act, H.R. 2902. If passed, the bill would authorize the Federal Trade Commission to review the fairness of broadband subscription plans based on cost. Keep Reading

Expert Opinion

Addressing Anti-Competitive Behavior on the Internet

NEW YORK, June 23 - In an effort to address the anti-competitive behavior that impacts various aspects of the Internet and technologies markets, as well as their vital markets for ideas, the Personal Democracy Forum brought together panelists representing the "little-guy" innovators of the technology industry. Keep Reading

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