The Hill

Trump Administration drops Obama-era proposal to require communication technology in cars

The Trump administration has quietly dropped an Obama-era proposal requiring all new vehicles to have communication technology that allows them to wirelessly “talk” to each another. The rule, unveiled last December, calls for all new light-duty cars and trucks to eventually be equipped with vehicle-to-vehicle (V2V) technology, a safety system that enables cars to send wireless signals to each other, anticipate each other’s moves and thus avoid crashes. Officials have said the technology could prevent tens of thousands of crashes each year.

Tech industry outlines proposals for online ad disclosure legislation

The Internet Association, a trade group representing internet platforms like Facebook and Google, outlined principles for what the industry would like to see in online ad disclosure legislation. The wish list includes oversight from the Federal Election Commission and a set of uniform rules applied to all websites equally.

President Trump's war on media is truly dangerous

[Commentary] President Donald Trump’s appetite for shutting down the free press is a reminder of his open admiration for strong men dictators like Russia’s Vladimir Putin, Turkey’s Recep Erdogan and the Philippines’ Rodrigo Duterte. Those strongmen limit the freedom of the press and, in some cases, kill and jail journalists.


Sen Sander to Justice Department: Block AT&T purchase of Time Warner

Sen Bernie Sanders (I-VT) is demanding the Department of Justice block a deal for AT&T to purchase Time Warner, arguing acquisition would negatively affect Americans. The former Democratic presidential candidate sent a letter to Renata Hesse, the acting assistant attorney general of DOJ's antitrust division, warning that the proposed $85 billion sale of Time Warner to telecommunications behemoth AT&T would mean a "gross concentration of power."

“This merger represents a gross concentration of power that runs counter to the public good and should be blocked," Sen Sanders wrote. He said that he believes the sale, which must be approved by federal regulators, would lead to less diversity and news content, and could mean higher prices and fewer choices for consumers. "The media and telecommunications landscape is changing. It is important that public policy concerns guide these changes, so that we may preserve our democratic discourse and open competitive markets for speech and commerce,” Sen Sanders wrote. "That is the function of antitrust laws," he added. "I ask you to enforce them and block the merger."

Former wireless group lobbyist sets up shop with AT&T, Verizon as clients

The former top lobbyist for the wireless industry’s major trade association in Washington will continue his work for the group, and some of its members, as a consultant. Lobbying forms filed recently show that Jot Carpenter will lobby for CTIA, the trade group, as well as AT&T and Verizon, the nation’s top two wireless providers. His advocacy is focusing on spectrum provisions in the appropriations process as well as a bill meant to combat spoofing, or the practice of falsifying a caller ID.

Carpenter departed from the trade association in July with the intention of starting his own consulting business. At the time, he said he wanted to continue working on wireless issues. “I’m proud of CTIA’s talented team and the many things we have accomplished together during my time at the Association,” he said in a statement at the time. “From spectrum to tax policy to cybersecurity, the things we have achieved together have benefited the industry and consumers and I have been lucky to be involved in all of those efforts.” “I hope that my new venture will include remaining a part of the wireless industry for many years.” He worked at AT&T as well as other jobs in the private and public sectors before coming to the trade group. When he left, CTIA President Meredith Attwell Baker said the organization was “excited to support his new venture and hope to partner with Jot for years to come.”

Sen. Feinstein 'open to changes' on NSA spying

Sen Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) said she will consider forthcoming recommendations to change the National Security Agency's (NSA) controversial phone surveillance program.

"If there are alternatives that preserve the operational effectiveness of the call records program and can address privacy concerns, I am certainly open to changes," Sen Feinstein, chairwoman of the Senate Intelligence Committee and a vocal defender of the NSA, said in a statement.

The intelligence community and the Department of Justice are scheduled to present to President Barack Obama recommendations for reforming the NSA program that collects information about American phone calls, first exposed by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden in the summer of 2013.