Harold Feld

Tumblr, Consolidation and The Gentrification of Internet.

Tumblr recently announced it will ban adult content.  Although partially in response to the discovery of a number of communities posting child pornography and subsequent ban of the Tumblr ap from the extremely important Apple ap store, a former engineer at Tumblr said the change has been in works for months. The change was mandated by Tumblr’s corporate parent Verizon, in order to attract greater advertising revenue.

Chairman Pai Continues Radical Deregulation Agenda. Next On The Menu — SMS Texting and Short Codes

On the anniversary of the repeal of network neutrality, Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai now proposes another goodie for carriers – classifying both short codes and text messages as Title I “information service” rather than a Title II telecommunications service. As this is even more ridiculous than 2017’s reclassification of broadband as Title I, the draft Order relies primarily on the false claim that classifying text messaging as Title I is an anti-robocall measure.

We Need to Fix the News Media, Not Just Social Media—Part 3

This blog post addresses how the business side of journalism needs to evolve to maintain sustainable news production necessary for a healthy democracy. I discuss the basic business models for supporting journalism that have endured throughout the last few centuries of technological change, how these may be successfully adapted to the 21st Century, and what policies would facilitate the transition to these new models.

We Need to Fix the News Media, Not Just Social Media—Part 2

Trained reporters play a critical role in identifying news events through following social media. When reporters have both professional training and experience with the organizers and actors on social media they can not only anticipate important news events, but they can also contextualize them for followers and authenticate the raw footage and real-time reporting. Even when considering the crisis of trust and generalized suspicion, it is important to distinguish the nuances.

Hurricane Michael A Wake Up Call On Why Total Dereg of Telecom A Very Bad Idea.

Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai and Gov Rick Scott (R-FL) have expressed frustration with the slow pace of restoring communications in FL in the wake of Hurricane Michael. What neither Chairman Pai nor Gov Scott mention is their own roll in creating this sorry state of affairs. Their radical deregulation of the telephone industry, despite the lessons of previous natural disasters such as Hurricane Sandy, guaranteed that providers would chose to cut costs and increase profits rather than invest in hardening networks or emergency preparedness.

Hurricane Michael Aftermath ‘Wake Up Call’ On Deregulating Telecommunications Services

Gov Rick Scott (R-FL) and Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai have not taken responsibility for how their radical deregulation of telephone service has contributed to the slow pace of repairs for FL's communications services. In 2011, Gov Scott signed the “Regulatory Reform Act of 2011,” which eliminated virtually all oversight of FL’s residential telephone service.

The FCC Decides Rural America Has Too Many Broadband Options, So They Are Taking Away 5G Spectrum To Give To The Big Guys.

The Federal Communications Commission is about to take spectrum away from rural providers.  Public Knowledge sent a letter to FCC Chairman Ajit Pai asking him to change the draft Order altering the rules for the “Citizen’s Broadband Radio Service” (CBRS) to keep several of the old rules in place. Specifically, we want the FCC to keep at least some license areas at census tract size, rather than making them bigger and therefore unaffordable for small providers like wireless ISPs (WISPs).

Verizon California Throttling Mistake Shows How Radical Pai’s Repeal Order Really Was

Congress created the Federal Communications Commission in order to ensure we would have working communications infrastructure for, among other things, handling public safety. So you would think that when Verizon throttled the Santa Clara (CA) Fire Department’s mobile broadband connection for coordinating response to the Mendocino Complex Fire — the largest wildfire in California history — that the FCC would naturally be all over it.

We Need to Fix the News Media, Not Just Social Media

Because the stakes are so high, we need to look with extreme skepticism at proposals primarily designed to prop up the current consolidated and dysfunctional media landscape. If we want to address the very real problems created by a dysfunctional media, we need to separate which of these problems can properly be attributed to dominant platforms and which to structural problems in the traditional news industry.

What Would Real Platform CPNI Look Like?

Customer proprietary network information (usually abbreviated as “CPNI”) refers to a very specific set of privacy regulations governing telecommunications providers (codified at 47 U.S.C. §222) and enforced by the Federal Communications Commission. But while CPNI provides some of the strongest consumer privacy protections in federal law, it also does much more than that.