Headlines

Benton Foundation provides free, daily summaries of articles concerning the quickly-changing telecommunications policy landscape.

White House releases draft of consumer privacy bill

Location:
The White House, 1600 Pennsylvania Ave NW, Washington, DC, 20500, United States
Recommendation:
3

The Obama Administration released a draft of legislation that would make it easier for consumers to see or remove the personal data that companies keep. The Consumer Privacy Bill of Rights Act of 2015 would address the large amounts of data that companies can collect from customers -- whether it's used internally, analyzed by advertisers, or sold to a third-party aggregator. It would require companies to provide "concise and easily understandable" explanations of how data will be used, as well as options for customers to see, correct, or remove information.

Guidance Issued on Protecting Student Privacy While Using Online Educational Services

Location:
Department of Education, 400 Maryland Avenue, SW, Washington, DC, 20202, United States
Recommendation:
3

The Department of Education released model terms of service guidance and a training video aimed at helping schools and districts protect student privacy while using online educational services and applications. The guidance offers examples of terms of service provisions to help school officials identify which online educational services and applications have strong privacy and data security policies and practices.

The Increasing Politicization of the FCC

Location:
Federal Communications Commission (FCC), 445 12th Street SW, Washington, DC, 20554, United States
Recommendation:
1

The Federal Communications Commission is no stranger to controversial issues. But network neutrality has taken things to a new level, and that has people wondering if the agency is politicized beyond repair.

National Association of Broadcasters to FCC: Save Our Translators

Location:
Federal Communications Commission (FCC), 445 12th Street SW, Washington, DC, 20554, United States
Recommendation:
1

The National Association of Broadcasters has told the Federal Communications Commission that it should not try to reclaim more spectrum in smaller markets than large for the incentive auction because that could "wipe out" the translator services that help full-power station signals, particularly in Western states, reach remote areas.

'Old guard' civil rights groups blew it on net neutrality

Location:
CNN, 1 CNN Center, Atlanta, GA, 30303, United States
Recommendation:
1

The Federal Communications Commission got it right on "net neutrality." And so did countless progressive, people-powered groups, such as Color of Change, an online community (which I helped to found) dedicated to bringing about positive change for African-Americans. Ditto for tiny, grassroots dynamos like Oakland's Center for Media Justice, led by Malkia Cyril. You know who got it dead, dead wrong? As much as it pains me to say it: Far too many of our old-school civil rights organizations.

Net neutrality rules set level playing field for data-intense healthcare users

Location:
Federal Communications Commission (FCC), 445 12th Street SW, Washington, DC, 20554, United States
Recommendation:
2

FCC commissioners at the public meeting said the rule will apply to both wired (cable or broadband) and wireless (mobile) networks. The latter category is crucial for some healthcare companies, American Well senior vice president Mike Putnam said.

Digital divide: Improving Internet access in the developing world through affordable services and diverse content

Location:
Brookings, 1775 Massachusetts Ave, NW, Washington, DC, 20036, United States
Recommendation:
1

There are a number of ways to improve technology access and bring the benefits of a robust and open Internet to people around the world. By taking actions to reduce the gap between Internet users and nonusers, governments can work to maintain the freedom, openness, and diversity that are the cornerstones of the Internet. It is especially important to make progress on digital access, particularly in the cases of India and China.

Can Silicon Valley and Fort Meade work out their differences?

Location:
Brookings, 1775 Massachusetts Ave, NW, Washington, DC, 20036, United States
Recommendation:
1

General Counsel at the Office of the Director of National Intelligence Robert Litt spoke at the Brookings Institution to discuss programs related to President Barack Obama's 2014 speech on American surveillance policies and ongoing transparency efforts. Litt addressed many issues during his speech, including the relationship between the US government and the tech sector.

Privacy and cybersecurity get political legs

Location:
Brookings, 1775 Massachusetts Ave, NW, Washington, DC, 20036, United States
Recommendation:
1

Seeing cybersecurity and privacy take center stage in recent months has been a striking turn.

US Presses China on Technology Rules

Location:
China, China
Recommendation:
1

US officials and business groups are objecting to a draft Chinese antiterrorism law that they say will serve as a new way for Beijing to acquire proprietary information or nudge foreign technology companies out of the vast market.

The Battle for an Open Internet is Not Over

Location:
Internet Infrastructure Coalition, Washington, DC, United States
Recommendation:
1

Congratulations on a hard-fought victory on net neutrality this week. Unfortunately, much hard work protecting the open Internet remains to be done. The longstanding fight to protect the Open Internet will continue to be hashed out in court rooms, on Capitol Hill and Federal Communications Commission over the next few years. We need to be diligent about staying on top of this issue, and ensure that the progress made is not lost.

It's not really net neutrality

Location:
USA Today, 7950 Jones Branch Drive, McLean, VA, 22108, United States
Recommendation:
1

Net neutrality is a curious piece of regulation that has been spurred on by popular umbrage and letter-writing campaigns (or the modern social media equivalent), but which has been fashioned and will continue to be fashioned by a process of negotiation and defined by a language, wholly opaque to the public.There is no net neutrality, there are only the details of net neutrality, inevitably so fine and shaded and compromised that in the end such regulation might better be known as the "net self-Interest rules."

Net Neutrality: A Victory for Digital Innovation

Location:
WANdisco, 5000 Executive Parkway, San Ramon, CA, 94583, United States
Recommendation:
1

The competitiveness of the online world, the ability of startups to challenge the biggest of tech titans -- was under threat had net neutrality ended and new rules come into play that allowed Internet providers to charge for premium services.

Net Neutrality Is Here -- Thanks To An Unprecedented Guerilla Activism Campaign

Location:
Federal Communications Commission (FCC), 445 12th Street SW, Washington, DC, 20554, United States
Recommendation:
1

With the Federal Communications Commission voting to reclassify Internet access providers under Title II of the Communications Act, network neutrality rules are stronger than ever. The credit for such a seachange, say activists who agitated for the decision, belongs to a mix of online and traditional activism.

The net neutrality rules might not be available for weeks. That's ridiculous.

Location:
Federal Communications Commission (FCC), 445 12th Street SW, Washington, DC, 20554, United States
Recommendation:
1

The Federal Communications Commission has established America's strongest network neutrality rules to date. The document, which reportedly weighed in at more than 300 pages, will transform how the nation's broadband services are regulated. But if you want to read it, you'll need to wait a few days. Or maybe weeks. That's ridiculous.

Rand Paul: Your phone records are none of the government's 'damn business'

Location:
2015 Conservative Political Action Conference, 201 Waterfront Street, National Harbor, MD, 20745, United States
Recommendation:
1

Sen Rand Paul (R-KY) criticized the intelligence community's mass surveillance of Americans at the Conservative Political Action Conference.

China censorship sweep deletes more than 60,000 Internet accounts

Location:
China, China
Recommendation:
1

Some of China's largest Internet companies deleted more than 60,000 online accounts because their names did not conform to regulations due to take effect on March 1, the top Internet regulator said. Alibaba Group Holding Ltd, Tencent Holdings Ltd, Baidu Inc, Sina Corp affiliate Weibo Corp and other companies deleted the accounts in a cull aimed at "rectifying" online names, the Cyberspace Administration of China said.

House members push bill limiting government access to e-mails stored overseas

Location:
Capitol Building, E Capitol St NE & 1st St NE, Washington, DC, United States
Recommendation:
1

Reps Tom Marino (R-PA) and Suzan DelBene (D-WA) are introducing the Law Enforcement Access to Data Stored Abroad Act, a proposal to bolster email privacy and set limits on the government's access to content stored overseas.

Broadcasters Benefit From Net Neutrality

Location:
TVNewsCheck, Chatham, NJ, 07928, United States
Recommendation:
1

Broadcasters scored a great victory in Washington and it didn't cost them anything -- not one, solitary political chit.

FCC Plans $9 Million Fine Against GPSPS for Illegally Billing Customers and Switching Their Phone Companies

Location:
Federal Communications Commission (FCC), 445 12th Street SW, Washington, DC, 20554, United States
Recommendation:
1

The Federal Communications Commission plans to fine GPSPS, Inc., an Atlanta (GA) telephone company, $9,065,000 for allegedly switching consumers’ long distance telephone services without their authorization (“slamming”), billing customers for unauthorized charges (“cramming”), and submitting falsified evidence to government regulatory officials as "proof” that consumers had authorized the company to switch their long distance providers.

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