FCC approves broadband internet subsidy for low-income Americans

REUTERS/Yuri Gripas

The Federal Communications Commission today approved a $9.25 monthly broadband subsidy to help millions of low-income U.S. households get online. The long-fought expansion of the FCC's Lifeline program is intended to help bridge the digital divide.

Read the rest

From dingo babysitter to net neutrality hero: Tom Wheeler's legacy

tom-wheeler-portrait-640x887

When Obama appointed Tom Wheeler, formerly the top lobbyist for both the cable industry and the mobile phone industry to run the FCC, many people (including me) were outraged at the idea of putting such an insider in charge of keeping his own former employers honest (it didn't help that AT&T and Comcast both issued triumphant press releases at the news). Read the rest

The FCC wants to unlock your cable box, and Silicon Valley agrees

REUTERS/Yuri Gripas

Silicon Valley has managed to break apart the long-locked cable TV bundle. On Thursday, The Federal Communications Commission okayed a proposal to let cable TV customers swap out their Comcast or TWC cable boxes for third-party boxes and applications.

Read the rest

T-Mobile's "Binge On" is just throttling for all video

TMO_BINGE-ON_Lockup-RGB_MAG

T-Mobile claims that its Binge On service (video that doesn't count against subscribers' data-caps) is a bit of pre-processing magic that makes the videos you watch load with less jitter and buffering, but that's not what's going on under the hood. Read the rest

Spy at will! FCC won't force companies to honor Do Not Track

consumerwatchdog

The FCC has rejected Consumer Watchdog's petition to force Internet companies like "Google, Facebook, YouTube, Pandora, Netflix, and LinkedIn") to honor the "Do Not Track" flag that browsers can send to web-servers, informing them that users do not want their Internet activity to be tracked and shared with third parties. Read the rest

Sons of Anarchy FCC complaints: ”The most sadistic program on TV," also #butts

soa

"I hate to think that people are watching this and we walk among them." Read the rest

FCC trying to stop phone companies that rip off prisoners' families

16039218112_899a51f0ee_o

The private phone companies that charge prisoners' families up to up to $12.95 for 15 minutes' conversation are not the worst prison profiteers, but they're pretty high up in the rogues' gallery of greedy, immoral predators who view the poorest and most vulnerable Americans as penned-up wallets. Read the rest

Subliminal penises and other bizarre FCC complaints about TV's MythBusters

Mythbusters-Simpsons
MuckRock spotlights some of the complaints -- some utterly bizarre, others downright stupid -- filed with the FCC by viewers upset with MythBusters. My favorites are the one about the subliminal penis spotted in an explosion and a "near hate crime" against the Catholic Church:

Read the rest

Christ, What an Asshole

"Internet access is not a necessity or human right" -Michael O’Rielly, Republican FCC Commissioner Read the rest

Cable bills cut after FCC complaints

funruly-comcast

Christopher Ferguson's Comcast bill was bullshit. When he complained, the company offered him alternatives that cost more. So he turned them in to the FCC and got relief.

Two customers, one of Comcast and one of Time Warner Cable, told Ars that the cable providers gave them price breaks last week shortly after they complained to the FCC about what they claim are unfair billing practices. These two complaints weren’t about net neutrality violations, but both customers we talked to seemed to be spurred into action by the FCC expanding its complaint system. Moreover, the FCC’s net neutrality order also reclassified broadband providers as common carriers, allowing for penalties if their billing practices are “unjust” or “unreasonable." The FCC has not said exactly what constitutes unjust or unreasonable pricing.

Photo: Comcast Center, Philadelphia, Mordor. Courtesy @funruly. Read the rest

FCC fines AT&T $100M for throttling "unlimited" customers

The company advertised an "unlimited data" plan on its 5-12Mbps LTE network, but customers who hit a cap were throttled to 1/60th of that. Read the rest

FCC tells Paypal to knock it off with the robocalls

Although Paypal's new take-it-or-leave-it terms-of-service give it the right to give robocallers your phone number for endless harassment, the FCC has warned the company that this idea isn't just stupid and evil, it's also illegal. Read the rest

Comcast ghost-wrote politicians' letters in support of Time Warner Cable merger

Letters sent to the FCC in favor of Comcast's proposed Time Warner Cable merger came from Mayor Jere Wood of Roswell, GA; Councilor Todd Wodraska of Jupiter, FL; Oregon Secretary of State Kate Brown and many other politicians -- all written in whole or part by Comcast's staffers and lobbyists. Read the rest

One month to Net Neutrality showdown at FCC: add the countdown to your site!

Evan from Fight for the Future writes, "Today is exactly one month before the FCC's much anticipated vote on new net neutrality rules -- this could be the most important vote for the future of the Internet in our lifetimes." Read the rest

The FCC will vote on Net Neutrality in February

Tom Wheeler, head of the US Federal Communication Commission. (REUTERS/JASON REED)

In an announcement ending weeks of speculation, Federal Communications Commission officials today said that federal regulators will introduce and vote on new proposed net neutrality rules in February. Read the rest

Marriott plans to block personal wifi hotspots

The hotel chain petitioned the FCC for changes that could let venues shut down personal networks. Microsoft, Google, and the cell industry are opposed.

FCC seems to have lost hundreds of thousands of net neutrality comments

Evan from Fight for the Future writes, "The Sunlight Foundation released a study based on data that the FCC had released to the public about the most recent batch of net neutrality comments. We at Fight for the Future worked really hard to deliver more than 750,000 comments of our own to the FCC, but when we looked at the data, hundreds of thousands of them were missing. Our CTO Jeff Lyon just took to Reddit to try to get to the bottom of this. Maybe you can help?" Read the rest

More posts