Net Neutrality’s Winners and Losers with Chris Lewis (Ep. 103)
Who are net neutrality’s winners and losers? The FCC is currently considering whether it will overturn the long-fought net neutrality rules enacted under the Wheeler FCC. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia subsequently upheld the rules. If the Ajit Pai FCC undoes the rules, as it is likely to do, there will be, as always, winners and losers. Who will they be?
Further, ISPs are arguing that they too believe in net neutrality principles. But does their purported support of net neutrality principles align with the original definition of net neutrality that was first advanced by their opponents?
Christopher Lewis (@ChrisJ_Lewis) is Vice President at Public Knowledge. He leads the organization’s advocacy on Capitol Hill and other government agencies. Prior to joining Public Knowledge in 2012, Chris served at the Federal Communications Commission as Deputy Director of the Office of Legislative Affairs.
At the FCC, Chris advised the FCC Chairman on legislative and political strategy. He is a former U.S. Senate staffer for the late Sen. Edward M. Kennedy. Chris also has over 15 years’ worth of advocacy experience. Previously, Chris worked as the North Carolina Field Director for Barack Obama’s 2008 Presidential Campaign.
Chris serves on the Board of Directors for the Institute for Local Self Reliance. He also represents Public Knowledge on the Board of the Broadband Internet Technical Advisory Group (BITAG). Chris graduated from Harvard University with a Bachelors degree in Government. He lives in Alexandria, VA where he loves working on local civic issues and is elected to the Alexandria City Public School Board.
Trump’s manufacturing council disbands
After he made insensitive remarks following racial unrest in Charlottesville, Virginia the weekend before last, Trump was forced to shut down his manufacturing advisory council. Several CEOs had decided to resign from the council after Trump failed to denounce the KKK and White Nationalists, saying instead that there had been “hatred, bigotry and violence on many sides.” He then backtracked reading a prepared statement, only to go back to saying all sides were at fault for the violence. Intel CEO Brian Krzanich was among the CEOs to resign from the council. Steven Musil reports in CNET. But the American Tech Council remains intact, although the CEOS of Google, Apple and Microsoft wrote internal memos distancing themselves from the administration. That’s in next.gov.
Tech companies ban extremist websites and causes
Both Google and GoDaddy last week announced that they would not host sites like Daily Stormer that espouse white supremacist ideology. First Amendment advocacy groups, however, like the Electronic Frontier Foundation, argue that the move could backfire and set a bad precedent for civil rights groups. Andrew Morse reports for CNET. Sites like GoFundMe and Paypal are also banning white supremacists from raising funds on their platforms. Abbey White reports in Vox. But the LA Times reports that these groups are forming their own corporate ecosystem in defiance of Silicon Valley.
DOJ seeks user info from Anti-Trump website
Dreamhost wrote a blog post last week disclosing that the Justice Department has been demanding, for months, site visitor information from the anti-Trump website distruptj20.org. The warrant seeks all files from the site. Colin Lecher reports in the Verge.
Trump bolsters U.S. Cyber Command
President Trump is bolstering the U.S. Cyber Command making it a full combatant command. Now, administration officials will need to decide whether to spin out Cyber Command from the NSA. Jordan Fabian reports in The Hill.
The cozy relationship between Sinclair Broadcasting and FCC Chairman Ajit Pai
The New York Times reported last week on Sinclair Broadcasting’s enormous influence on current FCC Chairman Ajit Pai. Sinclair, known for its right-leaning content, currently owns or operates 175 television stations nationwide. But it has also proposed to merge with Tribune Media, which would bring that number up to 215 stations.
The deal would also give Sinclair a much larger presence in cities, including New York City, where it would own WPIX Channel 11. When he was an FCC Commissioner, Pai even ripped language, almost verbatim, from Sinclair’s own filings. Pai used the language to bolster his official legal arguments in support of Sinclair’s opposition to the Wheeler FCC’s crackdown on joint sales agreements. Then, just 10 days after he became FCC Chairman, Pai relaxed those restrictions. Since becoming Chairman, Pai has also relaxed some TV ownership limits. Cecilia Kang, Eric Lipton and and Sydney Ember report in The New York Times.
Trump orders China IP practices investigation
President Trump has ordered an investigation into China’s alleged theft of U.S. intellectual property. The administration estimates the alleged theft may have cost U.S. businesses some $600 billion. You can find the story in Fortune.
Federal Judge: LinkedIn must allow startup access to data–for now
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The case had already been up to the Supreme Court, which sent it back down to determine the degree of harm caused by the wrong information. While the damages in this case are minor, only around $1,000, it is seen as having significant implications for large tech companies like Facebook and Google that publish a variety of different types of consumer information.
Uber agrees to FTC privacy audits
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