Government & Communications

Attempts by governmental bodies to improve or impede communications with or between the citizenry.

Municipal broadband advocates fight off attacks from “dark money” groups

Cities and towns that build their own broadband networks often say they only considered the do-it-yourself option because private Internet service providers didn't meet their communities' needs.  Hundreds of municipal broadband networks have been built around the US as a result, including dozens that have started operating since 2021. The rise of public broadband hasn't happened without a fight, though.

Unreliable BDC Data

Representatives of NTCA–The Rural Broadband Association met with Hayley Steffen, legal advisor to Commissioner Anna Gomez for wireline and space, to discuss the impacts of unreliable Broadband Data Collection (“BDC”) data and “broadband overreach” on policy and funding decisions made by the Federal Communications Commission and provided a series of recommendations related to broadband availability mapping and BDC processes. While the FCC decided in 2021 that what a provider “makes available” would be determined by reference to a provider’s “advertised” levels of performance, and while it de

A National Strategy to Close the Digital Divide?

On May 15, 2024, the House of Representatives passed the National Telecommunications and Information Administration Reauthorization Act of 2024 (H.R. 4510). Tucked in the 100-page bill is a call for the National Telecommunications and Information Administration's (NTIA) Office of Internet Connectivity and Growth to develop and submit to Congress a national strategy to close the digital divide. Here is a quick look at what Congress is asking for.

Governments are becoming ‘mods.’ Here’s what they’re in for

Elon Musk’s ongoing war against the Brazilian judiciary is more than just another high-profile feud between arguably the world’s most prolific right-wing troll (who also happens to be one of its richest men) and the liberal governments that vex him. By going after Brazilian Supreme Court Justice Alexandre de Moraes after he ordered numerous right-wing accounts removed from X in that country, Musk has turned a debate over Brazilian censorship into a global conserv

AT&T paid bribes to get two major pieces of legislation passed, US government says

The US government has provided more detail on how a former AT&T executive allegedly bribed a powerful state lawmaker's ally in order to obtain legislation favorable to AT&T's business. Former AT&T Illinois President Paul La Schiazza is set to go on trial in September 2024 after being indicted on charges of conspiracy to unlawfully influence then-Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan (D).

TikTok files court challenge to US law that could lead to ban

TikTok and its parent company ByteDance challenged the US government in a legal filing on May 7 over a new law forcing the sale or ban of the social media giant, igniting a high-stakes court battle in Washington that could prove to be an existential fight for one of the world’s most popular apps. President Biden signed a law in April demanding that China-based ByteDance sell TikTok within a year or be banned across the United States, arguing that the Chinese government c

A New Diplomatic Strategy Emerges as Artificial Intelligence Grows

American and Chinese diplomats plan to meet to begin what amounts to the first, tentative arms control talks over the use of artificial intelligence. The talks in Geneva are an attempt to find some common ground on how A.I. will be used and in which situations it could be banned—for example, in the command and control of each country’s nuclear arsenals.

Stronger Together

The Department of Commerce's Economic Development Administration (EDA) and the Department of Agriculture's Rural Development (USDA RD) offer this joint planning resource guide, designed to help you eliminate barriers and encourage collaboration among your stakeholders. The guide is separated into four key focus areas including infrastructure and high-speed internet expansion.

What Did NTIA's Office of Internet Connectivity and Growth Accomplish in 2023?

Congress included the ACCESS BROADBAND Act in the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021 and established the Office of Internet Connectivity and Growth (OICG) within the Department of Commerce’s National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA). On April 30, OICG released its annual report detailing the office's work for 2023. OICG administers broadband programs created by both the Consolidated Appropriations Act and the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act. Four interconnected core pillars drive OICG’s initiatives, strategy, and key accomplishments:

FCC, FTC Formalize Enforcement Partnership for Protecting the Open Internet

This Memorandum of Understanding (“MOU”) is entered into by the Federal Communications Commission and the Federal Trade Commission for the purpose of facilitating their joint and common goals, obligations, and responsibilities to protect consumers and the public interest. The Agencies recognize and acknowledge that each agency has legal, technical, and investigative expertise and experience that is valuable for rendering advice and guidance to the other relating to the acts or practices of Internet service providers. It is agreed that: