Americans’ Privacy and the Feckless Six

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The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) has been aggressively dithering on privacy since at least 2008, when it allowed the National Security Agency (NSA) to capture metadata from telephone calls. The DOJ talks a brave “civil rights” game in public but behind the scenes it invades the publics’ and even news reporter’s privacy whenever senior […]

ACI in Forbes: FCC’s Tax and Subsidy Plan

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The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is contemplating a new universal service program that would subsidize broadband services for low-income consumers, and it is looking to use its Lifeline program, which currently subsidizes low-income telephone service consumers, as the model to follow.  However, a closer look at the history of the billion-plus Lifeline program shows a wasteful […]

EU Protectionism on the Rise

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For two decades, Google has focused tightly on improving its prowess in Internet search.  It is very good at search, and while it dominates search (worldwide about 88%) it is not the only player.  Microsoft’s Bing (4.5%) also produces excellent results, along with other rivals Yahoo (4.3%) and Baidu (0.6%).  When consumers choose among these […]

FCC Chairman Appoints ACI President to the CAC

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Today, the FCC announced that Chairman Wheeler has appointed membership to the Consumer Advisory Committee (CAC).  Steve Pociask (ACI president) was selected as one of CAC’s members, with Dr. Joseph Fuhr (professor of economics at Widener University and Senior Fellow at ACI) as an alternate to the CAC.

Cyber Security Might Begin With Modest Legislation

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  Several data security bills are afoot in the House.  They identify obligations triggered by a cyber-breach of entities who collect and maintain personal information of individuals.  A congressional bill, H.R. 1770, defines personally identifiable information (PID) and requires notification of consumers whenever there is an important breach of PID that is stored by a […]

When Privacy Can be Lethal

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The recent airliner crash in Europe raises questions about European privacy laws.  A European Union (EU) law known as “the right to be forgotten” is rooted in sentiment that on the Internet, we deserve to control how we are viewed by others. Along the road to that law’s adoption it leaned on evidence from some […]

The FCC Fails Consumers, But Who Wins?

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As everyone knows by now, the FCC enacted net neutrality last week by reclassifying it much like a public utility under Title II of the Communications Act of 1934. But after years of buildup, 4 million comments submitted to the FCC (thanks John Oliver), hundreds of articles and even a Vox explainer(!), it seems that […]

Consequences of Treating Broadband as a Public Utility

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The FCC is poised to vote on reclassifying broadband services as a common carrier, innocuously referred to as net neutrality regulations. From the outset, the net neutrality rules were unnecessary, did not address any apparent market failure, and protected companies instead of encouraging competition. While advocates for these regulations promised free, open and neutral internet, […]

Did the FCC Lie about Net Neutrality?

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Reclassification Could Be Costly for Consumers As a means to establish and promulgate new Internet rules, commonly referred to as net neutrality regulations, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) appears to be on the verge of reclassifying Internet services from a less-regulated “information service” to a much stricter public utility-style “common carrier telecommunications service.” The regulatory […]