fcc

Mon
26
Sep
John Lister's picture

Gov't Refuses Starlink Satellite Internet Subsidy

A satellite Internet company has slammed the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) for refusing to subsidize its expansion. Starlink wanted the public money that is normally given to wired Internet companies to reach rural areas. The FCC said ... Starlink hadn't done enough to prove it could live up to its promises and said the technology wasn't developed enough. The argument is about how the FCC allocates a $9.2 billion fund that's designed to subsidize companies to build or extend broadband access in places where it wouldn't be profitable to do so otherwise. Starlink had bid in an auction to ... (view more)

Tue
02
Aug
John Lister's picture

FCC May Increase Minimum Broadband Speed

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is set to increase the minimum threshold for 'broadband' speeds. It won't mean immediate changes for users, but could speed up efforts to boost investment and competition in broadband networks. At the ... moment, the FCC officially defines broadband internet as having speeds of at least 25Mbps for downloads and 3Mbps for uploads. That definition has remained unchanged since 2015, with previous FCC chair Tom Wheeler rejecting calls to increase it. Current chair Jessica Rosenworcel has formally proposed increasing the minimum speeds to 100Mbps for ... (view more)

Mon
07
Feb
John Lister's picture

Court: States Can Enforce Net Neutrality

Californian laws requiring "net neutrality" have been found lawful by an appeals court. As so often on the topic, the legal argument is as much about who has the power to make laws as it is the legal measures themselves. While precise definitions ... vary between people with different viewpoints, the most common definition of net neutrality is the principle that all Internet traffic (except that carrying illegal material) should be treated equally. One of the key issues for that principle in practice is whether Internet carriers can give priority to connections to specific sites or intentionally ... (view more)

Thu
15
Jul
John Lister's picture

Report: FCC Broadband Definition Too Slow

A government agency says the current US definition of broadband may be too slow. It says the threshold of 25 Mbps likely isn't enough for today's needs, particularly for small businesses. The figure in question is the Federal Communication ... Commission's "benchmark" for broadband speeds. It's important because it's the figure officials use to assess what proportion of the US population has access to broadband and whether the country is meeting targets. The most recent estimate is that 96 percent of the population has broadband access under the current definition. The benchmark also plays a key ... (view more)

Wed
21
Apr
John Lister's picture

FCC: Please Check Your Internet Speed

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has urged the public to use its Internet speed testing app. As with Netflix's tool, it's not just for the benefit of users. The FCC Speed Test App, which works for both WiFi and mobile data connections, ... has the usual simple "one-tap" functionality of such tools. By default is measures upload and download speeds plus latency. That's a measure of how quickly data transmission starts, which can be important for services such as online gaming. (Source: theverge.com ) Speed Maps Boosted Users can also switch on settings to measure jitter and packet loss ... (view more)

Tue
23
Mar
John Lister's picture

Robocallers Fined $225M; May be Blocked by Carriers

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has fined two telemarketers a record $225 million for unlawful automated "robocalls." The offenders, who used names including JSquared Telecom and Rising Eagle, made around a billion such calls in a ... five-month period. The fine isn't just a record for robocalls, but is also the largest ever issued by the FCC for any reason. (Source: cnbc.com ) The calls claimed to offer health insurance plans from well-known legitimate providers. In fact the calls were made on behalf of several companies, at least one of which has already been sued for its own ... (view more)

Thu
25
Jul
John Lister's picture

Robocall Bill Passes House

The House of Representatives has overwhelmingly backed a bill to crack down on unwanted robocalls. The bipartisan measure would increase regulatory power and make use of technology to tackle the problem. The proposed Stopping Bad Robocalls Act ... passed by 429 votes to 3. It follows a 97 to 1 vote in the Senate on a similar bill in May. It's now highly likely one of the bills will pass through both houses and become law. (Source: appleinsider.com ) Robocalls are automatically dialed phone calls. Because there's no need for a human to dial the number, both legitimate marketers and scammers can ... (view more)

Wed
09
May
John Lister's picture

Robocalls on the Rise; FCC rethinks Restrictions

Robocalls are on the rise according to one company which tries to fight them. Sneaky new tactics and a recent court ruling are both contributing factors. The rise has been reported by YouMail, which produces apps for smartphones designed to block ... automated robocalls that aren't made by a human and instead play a recorded message when the recipient picks up. Based on records collated from its apps, YouMail estimates 3.4 billion such calls were made in April, up from around 2.5 billion in the same period last year. While the nature of the estimate means the figures themselves shouldn't be taken ... (view more)

Wed
07
Mar
John Lister's picture

Net Neutrality Now State vs Federal, but Will it Last?

Washington State has passed a law enforcing net neutrality. It could prompt a legal battle over state versus federal rulemaking power. The state law, which takes effect in June, is based on the net neutrality principle that all Internet data (except ... for illegal content) should be treated equally. The new law bans three specific behaviors by Internet providers who offer service in Washington state, namely: blocking users from accessing any legal service, content or application; slowing down transfer speeds for specific types of content; and giving favorable treatment to particular data in ... (view more)

Thu
30
Mar
John Lister's picture

Congress: Internet Firms Can Share (Sell) Your User Activity

Congress has voted to ditch rules that would have made it harder for broadband companies to share personal user data with third party companies. The vote means Federal Communications Commission (FCC) regulations will not take effect. The rules were ... adopted by the FCC last October and covered broadband and wireless providers, but not websites such as Google or Facebook. Had they taken effect, the rules would have meant Internet providers could not share key data - for example with advertisers - without the explicit consent of customers. This data included browsing history, details of the apps ... (view more)

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