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Broadband Roundup

California Net Neutrality, Georgia Broadband Maps, New House Antitrust Bill

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Photo of California State Sen. Scott Wiener from Housing is a Human Right

February 24, 2021 – A California judge has rejected an attempt by internet service providers to prevent the state from enforcing its net neutrality rules, paving the way for its enforcement.

Judge John Mendez, in the Eastern District of California, issued the ruling Tuesday. The law provides Californians with the strongest net neutrality protections in the nation, which essentially prevents service providers from slowing or blocking certain websites and accelerating apps that pay them.

Democratic State Sen. Scott Wiener, the author of the law, said the judge’s ruling was a huge victory for open access to the internet, our democracy and our economy. Wiener advocated for allowing “ourselves to decide where we go on the internet and how we access information.”

Groups, including Public Knowledge and New America’s Open Technology Institute, who filed submissions in the case, celebrated the decision.

The ruling was seen as a blow to the telecom industry and its associations, who in a joint statement said they will review the judge’s decision “before deciding on next steps,” alluding to a possible appeal.

First signed by former Gov. Jerry Brown, California became the first state to pass a net neutrality law, hoping Congress and other states would do the same. The Trump administration sued to block it, which prevented it from taking effect while in court. But in early February 2021, the Justice Department under the Biden administration dropped the lawsuit.

In October, the Federal Communications Commission – before being headed by acting chairwoman and net neutrality advocate Jessica Rosenworcel voted again against Obama-era net neutrality rules.

Georgia Gets Ahead of FCC on Broadband Maps

Georgia state officials recognized three years ago it was grappling with bringing broadband to unserved areas in the state. The problem though, was no one knew where broadband gaps actually existed. Having no maps of its own, and not being able to rely on the precision of Federal Communications Commission maps, the officials took the issue into their own hands instead of waiting on the federal government.

Fast forward to today, and the state legislature has since formed the Georgia Broadband Deployment Initiative and passed a law that service providers agree with that would allow detailed information about mapping to be shared privately, without revealing key information to competitors.

“The states are the ones who are innovating on this,” says Peggy Schaffer, director of the Connect Maine Authority, the state’s effort to bridge its digital divide. “We know we can’t wait for the feds to fix it. We waited, we’re done, so we’re moving.”

In its first two years of the initiative, Georgia had built a map hailed as “one of the most granular in the nation.” And it wasn’t just Georgia who took it upon itself to act. Maine and Pennsylvania followed suit and built their own granular data that pinpointed gaps in broadband.

We took the approach of getting [data] more at an address- or a location-level approach to get a better understanding, said Deana Perry, executive director of the Georgia Broadband Deployment Initiative.

The federal government knows its broadband mapping efforts need serious repair. In July of 2020, the FCC approved measures aiming to improve the accuracy and speed of the agency’s data collection practices. These actions were part of the Broadband Data Act, which requires more granular data to be handed over about which areas have broadband coverage.

There must be more innovative tools for network builders to plan and operate their networks, which will speed up the pace of deployment and it will create an unprecedented level of transparency and accountability about what is being built with public dollars.

Cable companies want to sell broadband, but this segment of the industry has been reluctant to support improvements for the most granular-level broadband mapping because it infrequently offers service to low-density rural areas. Inaccurate federal government maps pose serious setbacks when determining how broadband funding should be allocated. The U.S. is allocating billions of dollars through the Rural Digital Opportunity Fund, which the FCC called the “largest investment ever to close [the] digital divide.”

House antitrust chair to introduce reform bill 

House Judiciary Antitrust Subcommittee Chairman David Cicilline, D-R.I., who serves as the chairman of the House antirust panel, said Monday he will introduce an antitrust reform bill “very soon.”

The bill will seek to control large technology platforms’ power in the digital economy, as  reported by Bloomberg Quint.

Cicilline has been investigating tech giants for 16 months and said Monday he is crafting legislation with colleagues that can pass Congress in response to their findings.

His antitrust legislation fuels growing support on Capitol Hill that would give antitrust enforcers more power to block mergers and stop anticompetitive conduct.

Sen. Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn., also introduced antitrust legislation in February 2020 that would seek to increase enforcement resources and prevent anticompetitive mergers.

Cicilline said at a small business webinar he intends for Congress to seize the moment to make significant progress to address the monopoly challenge that faces our country as failure to do so is not an option.

Broadband Roundup

New York Drops $15 Internet, Lumen Gets Army Contract, Illinois Signs Telehealth Bill

New York drops $15 internet after interim court decision, Lumen gets army contract for broadband, Illinois allows telehealth for all.

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February 24, 2021 – A California judge has rejected an attempt by internet service providers to prevent the state from enforcing its net neutrality rules, paving the way for its enforcement.

Judge John Mendez, in the Eastern District of California, issued the ruling Tuesday. The law provides Californians with the strongest net neutrality protections in the nation, which essentially prevents service providers from slowing or blocking certain websites and accelerating apps that pay them.

Democratic State Sen. Scott Wiener, the author of the law, said the judge’s ruling was a huge victory for open access to the internet, our democracy and our economy. Wiener advocated for allowing “ourselves to decide where we go on the internet and how we access information.”

Groups, including Public Knowledge and New America’s Open Technology Institute, who filed submissions in the case, celebrated the decision.

The ruling was seen as a blow to the telecom industry and its associations, who in a joint statement said they will review the judge’s decision “before deciding on next steps,” alluding to a possible appeal.

First signed by former Gov. Jerry Brown, California became the first state to pass a net neutrality law, hoping Congress and other states would do the same. The Trump administration sued to block it, which prevented it from taking effect while in court. But in early February 2021, the Justice Department under the Biden administration dropped the lawsuit.

In October, the Federal Communications Commission – before being headed by acting chairwoman and net neutrality advocate Jessica Rosenworcel voted again against Obama-era net neutrality rules.

Georgia Gets Ahead of FCC on Broadband Maps

Georgia state officials recognized three years ago it was grappling with bringing broadband to unserved areas in the state. The problem though, was no one knew where broadband gaps actually existed. Having no maps of its own, and not being able to rely on the precision of Federal Communications Commission maps, the officials took the issue into their own hands instead of waiting on the federal government.

Fast forward to today, and the state legislature has since formed the Georgia Broadband Deployment Initiative and passed a law that service providers agree with that would allow detailed information about mapping to be shared privately, without revealing key information to competitors.

“The states are the ones who are innovating on this,” says Peggy Schaffer, director of the Connect Maine Authority, the state’s effort to bridge its digital divide. “We know we can’t wait for the feds to fix it. We waited, we’re done, so we’re moving.”

In its first two years of the initiative, Georgia had built a map hailed as “one of the most granular in the nation.” And it wasn’t just Georgia who took it upon itself to act. Maine and Pennsylvania followed suit and built their own granular data that pinpointed gaps in broadband.

We took the approach of getting [data] more at an address- or a location-level approach to get a better understanding, said Deana Perry, executive director of the Georgia Broadband Deployment Initiative.

The federal government knows its broadband mapping efforts need serious repair. In July of 2020, the FCC approved measures aiming to improve the accuracy and speed of the agency’s data collection practices. These actions were part of the Broadband Data Act, which requires more granular data to be handed over about which areas have broadband coverage.

There must be more innovative tools for network builders to plan and operate their networks, which will speed up the pace of deployment and it will create an unprecedented level of transparency and accountability about what is being built with public dollars.

Cable companies want to sell broadband, but this segment of the industry has been reluctant to support improvements for the most granular-level broadband mapping because it infrequently offers service to low-density rural areas. Inaccurate federal government maps pose serious setbacks when determining how broadband funding should be allocated. The U.S. is allocating billions of dollars through the Rural Digital Opportunity Fund, which the FCC called the “largest investment ever to close [the] digital divide.”

House antitrust chair to introduce reform bill 

House Judiciary Antitrust Subcommittee Chairman David Cicilline, D-R.I., who serves as the chairman of the House antirust panel, said Monday he will introduce an antitrust reform bill “very soon.”

The bill will seek to control large technology platforms’ power in the digital economy, as  reported by Bloomberg Quint.

Cicilline has been investigating tech giants for 16 months and said Monday he is crafting legislation with colleagues that can pass Congress in response to their findings.

His antitrust legislation fuels growing support on Capitol Hill that would give antitrust enforcers more power to block mergers and stop anticompetitive conduct.

Sen. Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn., also introduced antitrust legislation in February 2020 that would seek to increase enforcement resources and prevent anticompetitive mergers.

Cicilline said at a small business webinar he intends for Congress to seize the moment to make significant progress to address the monopoly challenge that faces our country as failure to do so is not an option.

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Broadband Roundup

FCC C-Band 5G Licenses, Proposed Antitrust Bill Harms Startups, Klobuchar Bill Takes Heat

FCC prioritizes mid-band spectrum, proposed antitrust bill will damage startups, Amy Klobuchar’s proposed Section 230 reform takes on heat.

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Sen. Amy Klobuchar, D-Minnesota

February 24, 2021 – A California judge has rejected an attempt by internet service providers to prevent the state from enforcing its net neutrality rules, paving the way for its enforcement.

Judge John Mendez, in the Eastern District of California, issued the ruling Tuesday. The law provides Californians with the strongest net neutrality protections in the nation, which essentially prevents service providers from slowing or blocking certain websites and accelerating apps that pay them.

Democratic State Sen. Scott Wiener, the author of the law, said the judge’s ruling was a huge victory for open access to the internet, our democracy and our economy. Wiener advocated for allowing “ourselves to decide where we go on the internet and how we access information.”

Groups, including Public Knowledge and New America’s Open Technology Institute, who filed submissions in the case, celebrated the decision.

The ruling was seen as a blow to the telecom industry and its associations, who in a joint statement said they will review the judge’s decision “before deciding on next steps,” alluding to a possible appeal.

First signed by former Gov. Jerry Brown, California became the first state to pass a net neutrality law, hoping Congress and other states would do the same. The Trump administration sued to block it, which prevented it from taking effect while in court. But in early February 2021, the Justice Department under the Biden administration dropped the lawsuit.

In October, the Federal Communications Commission – before being headed by acting chairwoman and net neutrality advocate Jessica Rosenworcel voted again against Obama-era net neutrality rules.

Georgia Gets Ahead of FCC on Broadband Maps

Georgia state officials recognized three years ago it was grappling with bringing broadband to unserved areas in the state. The problem though, was no one knew where broadband gaps actually existed. Having no maps of its own, and not being able to rely on the precision of Federal Communications Commission maps, the officials took the issue into their own hands instead of waiting on the federal government.

Fast forward to today, and the state legislature has since formed the Georgia Broadband Deployment Initiative and passed a law that service providers agree with that would allow detailed information about mapping to be shared privately, without revealing key information to competitors.

“The states are the ones who are innovating on this,” says Peggy Schaffer, director of the Connect Maine Authority, the state’s effort to bridge its digital divide. “We know we can’t wait for the feds to fix it. We waited, we’re done, so we’re moving.”

In its first two years of the initiative, Georgia had built a map hailed as “one of the most granular in the nation.” And it wasn’t just Georgia who took it upon itself to act. Maine and Pennsylvania followed suit and built their own granular data that pinpointed gaps in broadband.

We took the approach of getting [data] more at an address- or a location-level approach to get a better understanding, said Deana Perry, executive director of the Georgia Broadband Deployment Initiative.

The federal government knows its broadband mapping efforts need serious repair. In July of 2020, the FCC approved measures aiming to improve the accuracy and speed of the agency’s data collection practices. These actions were part of the Broadband Data Act, which requires more granular data to be handed over about which areas have broadband coverage.

There must be more innovative tools for network builders to plan and operate their networks, which will speed up the pace of deployment and it will create an unprecedented level of transparency and accountability about what is being built with public dollars.

Cable companies want to sell broadband, but this segment of the industry has been reluctant to support improvements for the most granular-level broadband mapping because it infrequently offers service to low-density rural areas. Inaccurate federal government maps pose serious setbacks when determining how broadband funding should be allocated. The U.S. is allocating billions of dollars through the Rural Digital Opportunity Fund, which the FCC called the “largest investment ever to close [the] digital divide.”

House antitrust chair to introduce reform bill 

House Judiciary Antitrust Subcommittee Chairman David Cicilline, D-R.I., who serves as the chairman of the House antirust panel, said Monday he will introduce an antitrust reform bill “very soon.”

The bill will seek to control large technology platforms’ power in the digital economy, as  reported by Bloomberg Quint.

Cicilline has been investigating tech giants for 16 months and said Monday he is crafting legislation with colleagues that can pass Congress in response to their findings.

His antitrust legislation fuels growing support on Capitol Hill that would give antitrust enforcers more power to block mergers and stop anticompetitive conduct.

Sen. Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn., also introduced antitrust legislation in February 2020 that would seek to increase enforcement resources and prevent anticompetitive mergers.

Cicilline said at a small business webinar he intends for Congress to seize the moment to make significant progress to address the monopoly challenge that faces our country as failure to do so is not an option.

Continue Reading

Broadband Roundup

Infrastructure Bill With Higher Speeds, 5G Apple Phones, California Broadband, FTC Bill

Leaked infra proposal has base 100 Mbps speeds, Apple’s phones getting 5G, Newsom signs broadband bill, FTC money recovery bill.

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Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-NY

February 24, 2021 – A California judge has rejected an attempt by internet service providers to prevent the state from enforcing its net neutrality rules, paving the way for its enforcement.

Judge John Mendez, in the Eastern District of California, issued the ruling Tuesday. The law provides Californians with the strongest net neutrality protections in the nation, which essentially prevents service providers from slowing or blocking certain websites and accelerating apps that pay them.

Democratic State Sen. Scott Wiener, the author of the law, said the judge’s ruling was a huge victory for open access to the internet, our democracy and our economy. Wiener advocated for allowing “ourselves to decide where we go on the internet and how we access information.”

Groups, including Public Knowledge and New America’s Open Technology Institute, who filed submissions in the case, celebrated the decision.

The ruling was seen as a blow to the telecom industry and its associations, who in a joint statement said they will review the judge’s decision “before deciding on next steps,” alluding to a possible appeal.

First signed by former Gov. Jerry Brown, California became the first state to pass a net neutrality law, hoping Congress and other states would do the same. The Trump administration sued to block it, which prevented it from taking effect while in court. But in early February 2021, the Justice Department under the Biden administration dropped the lawsuit.

In October, the Federal Communications Commission – before being headed by acting chairwoman and net neutrality advocate Jessica Rosenworcel voted again against Obama-era net neutrality rules.

Georgia Gets Ahead of FCC on Broadband Maps

Georgia state officials recognized three years ago it was grappling with bringing broadband to unserved areas in the state. The problem though, was no one knew where broadband gaps actually existed. Having no maps of its own, and not being able to rely on the precision of Federal Communications Commission maps, the officials took the issue into their own hands instead of waiting on the federal government.

Fast forward to today, and the state legislature has since formed the Georgia Broadband Deployment Initiative and passed a law that service providers agree with that would allow detailed information about mapping to be shared privately, without revealing key information to competitors.

“The states are the ones who are innovating on this,” says Peggy Schaffer, director of the Connect Maine Authority, the state’s effort to bridge its digital divide. “We know we can’t wait for the feds to fix it. We waited, we’re done, so we’re moving.”

In its first two years of the initiative, Georgia had built a map hailed as “one of the most granular in the nation.” And it wasn’t just Georgia who took it upon itself to act. Maine and Pennsylvania followed suit and built their own granular data that pinpointed gaps in broadband.

We took the approach of getting [data] more at an address- or a location-level approach to get a better understanding, said Deana Perry, executive director of the Georgia Broadband Deployment Initiative.

The federal government knows its broadband mapping efforts need serious repair. In July of 2020, the FCC approved measures aiming to improve the accuracy and speed of the agency’s data collection practices. These actions were part of the Broadband Data Act, which requires more granular data to be handed over about which areas have broadband coverage.

There must be more innovative tools for network builders to plan and operate their networks, which will speed up the pace of deployment and it will create an unprecedented level of transparency and accountability about what is being built with public dollars.

Cable companies want to sell broadband, but this segment of the industry has been reluctant to support improvements for the most granular-level broadband mapping because it infrequently offers service to low-density rural areas. Inaccurate federal government maps pose serious setbacks when determining how broadband funding should be allocated. The U.S. is allocating billions of dollars through the Rural Digital Opportunity Fund, which the FCC called the “largest investment ever to close [the] digital divide.”

House antitrust chair to introduce reform bill 

House Judiciary Antitrust Subcommittee Chairman David Cicilline, D-R.I., who serves as the chairman of the House antirust panel, said Monday he will introduce an antitrust reform bill “very soon.”

The bill will seek to control large technology platforms’ power in the digital economy, as  reported by Bloomberg Quint.

Cicilline has been investigating tech giants for 16 months and said Monday he is crafting legislation with colleagues that can pass Congress in response to their findings.

His antitrust legislation fuels growing support on Capitol Hill that would give antitrust enforcers more power to block mergers and stop anticompetitive conduct.

Sen. Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn., also introduced antitrust legislation in February 2020 that would seek to increase enforcement resources and prevent anticompetitive mergers.

Cicilline said at a small business webinar he intends for Congress to seize the moment to make significant progress to address the monopoly challenge that faces our country as failure to do so is not an option.

Continue Reading

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