Other Developments, Further Reading, and Coming Events (7 April 2021)

Other Developments

  • The United Kingdom’s Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) found that Facebook’s purchase of Giphy would substantially lessen competition and is giving the companies the opportunity to respond to this finding before the CMA moves on to the next phase of its investigation. The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) is also looking at the deal and may well take action, too. In its press release, the CMA explained:
    • Giphy is an online database and search engine that allows users to share GIFs and stickers either via Giphy’s website or app, or through online platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Snapchat. In May last year, Facebook announced it had acquired Giphy.
    • Before the deal, Giphy competed with Facebook outside the UK in digital advertising through paid partnerships with brands, such as Pepsi and Dunkin’ Donuts. The CMA has found evidence that Giphy had planned to expand its digital advertising partnerships to other countries, including the UK.
    • The CMA also found that the deal could harm rival social media platforms, as it could mean Giphy would stop supplying GIFs to these companies or do so on worse terms – for example, requiring rivals to provide more user data to the merged entity to access Giphy GIFs. This could potentially lead to reduced choice for users and further increase Facebook’s market power in relation to social media.
  • The Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) declined to hear Facebook’s appeal of a ruling by the United States (U.S.) Court of Appeal for the Ninth Circuit, allowing the lower court ruling to stand that will allow a suit to proceed against the social media giant regarding its use of plug-ins to track people across third-party websites. Facebook had argued these practices do not violate the Wiretap Act (aka the Electronic Communications Privacy Act and the Stored Wire Electronic Communications Act) as the plaintiffs have argued in their class action lawsuit seeking more than $15 billion in damages. Specifically, the plaintiffs claim Facebook’s use of plug-ins do not make them a party to the communication under the Wiretap Act, meaning the company is subject to civil liability. Facebook pointed to rulings that reach the opposite result in other U.S. appeals courts. The case will now go back to the Ninth Circuit to move forward.
    • In re Facebook, Inc. Internet Tracking Litigation, No. 17-17486 (9th Cir.), the Ninth Circuit framed the case this way:
      • Facebook uses plug-ins to track users’ browsing histories when they visit third-party websites, and then compiles these browsing histories into personal profiles which are sold to advertisers to generate revenue. The parties do not dispute that Facebook engaged in these tracking practices after its users had logged out of Facebook.
      • Facebook facilitated this practice by embedding third- party plug-ins on third-party web pages. The plug-ins, such as Facebook’s “Like” button, contain bits of Facebook code. When a user visits a page that includes these plug-ins, this code is able to replicate and send the user data to Facebook through a separate, but simultaneous, channel in a manner undetectable by the user.
    • The Ninth Circuit held:
      • The Wiretap Act prohibits the unauthorized “interception” of an “electronic communication.” 18 U.S.C. § 2511(1)(a)–(e). Similarly, CIPA prohibits any person from using electronic means to “learn the contents or meaning” of any “communication” “without consent” or in an “unauthorized manner.” Cal. Pen. Code § 631(a). Both statutes contain an exemption from liability for a person who is a “party” to the communication, whether acting under the color of law or not. 18 U.S.C. § 2511(2)(c), (d); see Warden v. Kahn, 160 Cal. Rptr. 471, 475 (1979) (“[S]ection 631 . . . has been held to apply only to eavesdropping by a third party and not to recording by a participant to a conversation.”).
      • We adopt the First and Seventh Circuits’ understanding that simultaneous, unknown duplication and communication of GET requests do not exempt a defendant from liability under the party exception. As we have previously held, the “paramount objective of the [Electronic Communications Privacy Act, which amended the Wiretap Act] is to protect effectively the privacy of communications.” Joffe v. Google, 746 F.3d 920, 931 (9th Cir. 2013). We also recognize that the Wiretap Act’s legislative history evidences Congress’s intent to prevent the acquisition of the contents of a message by an unauthorized third-party or “an unseen auditor.” See S. REP. NO. 90-1097, reprinted in 1986 U.S.C.C.A.N. 2112, 2154, 2182. Permitting an entity to engage in the unauthorized duplication and forwarding of unknowing users’ information would render permissible the most common methods of intrusion, allowing the exception to swallow the rule.
      • Therefore, we conclude that Facebook is not exempt from liability as a matter of law under the Wiretap Act or California Invasion of Privacy Act as a party to the communication. We do not opine whether the Plaintiffs adequately pleaded the other requisite elements of the statutes, as those issues are not presented on appeal.
    • In its petition to SCOTUS appealing the Ninth Circuit’s ruling, Facebook argued:
      • In the decision below, the Ninth Circuit held that plaintiffs’ Wiretap Act claim could proceed, ruling that Facebook was not a “party to [a] communication” under the Act. App. 33a. While the court acknowledged that plaintiffs’ browsers sent the information that Facebook allegedly intercepted directly to Face-book, the court believed that Facebook was not a “party” because plaintiffs did not know about or authorize their browsers’ communication with Face-book. Id. at 30a-33a. The Ninth Circuit did not purport to base that holding on the Wiretap Act’s text, which uses the unmodified term “party” and says nothing about knowledge or authorization. Instead, the court relied on its view of the Act’s “paramount objective” and “legislative history.” Id. at 33a (internal quotation marks omitted). The court’s analysis of those considerations was itself erroneous—but more fundamentally, the Ninth Circuit disregarded this Court’s repeated instructions to adhere to statutory language.
      • In reaching its conclusion, the Ninth Circuit expressly acknowledged that “the Third Circuit has held to the contrary.” Id. at 32a (citing In re Google Inc. Cookie Placement Consumer Privacy Litig., 806 F.3d 125, 143 (3d Cir. 2015)). In In re Google, the Third Circuit considered the same type of computer-to-computer communications at issue here and ruled that the Wiretap Act’s “party” provision precluded liability. 806 F.3d at 143-44. Thus, if Facebook had been sued for a purported Wiretap Act violation in the Third Circuit, it could not be held liable. The same can almost certainly be said of the Fifth, Sixth, and Second Circuits, which have all rejected the Ninth Circuit’s rule that “unknown” or “unauthorized” participants  cannot  be  “parties”  to  a  communication.    Meanwhile, the Ninth Circuit “adopt[ed]” decisions of the  First  and  Seventh  Circuits  holding  that  defend-ants  engaging  in  computer-to-computer  communications  that  the  Ninth  Circuit  perceived  as  similar  to  those here can face liability under the Act.  App. 33a (citing In re Pharmatrak, Inc. Privacy Litig., 329 F.3d 9, 22 (1st Cir. 2003); United States v. Szymuszkiewicz, 622 F.3d 701, 706 (7th Cir. 2010)).
      • This square circuit conflict over the meaning of a federal  statute  warrants  review.    And  that  review  should  occur  now.    Most  leading  internet  companies  are based in the Ninth Circuit, so future plaintiffs will bring their Wiretap Act claims there, preventing ad-ditional  courts  from  addressing  this  issue. 
    • Naturally, the plaintiffs argued against Facebook in their reply:
      • Facebook urges that this Court grant review to address what it says are the “sweeping practical consequences” of the decision below. Facebook claims that the Ninth Circuit’s conclusion that Facebook is not a “party” within the meaning of the Wiretap Act here will “upend common internet practices,” “stifle future innovation,” and “chill the creativity that allows the internet to flourish.” It will, in Facebook’s telling, all but end the internet as we know it.
      • Nothing could be further from the truth. Despite Facebook’s hyperbole, the decision below will have little practical significance outside this case. Although barely mentioned in Facebook’s petition, the Wiretap Act also exempts from liability any interception made with a party’s “prior consent.” Nearly all of Facebook’s peers attempt to seek consent before tracking their users. Indeed, Facebook itself takes the position that it currently obtains sufficient consent to track its subscribers when they are logged out. And, starting last year, California state law requires every internet company to get consent from users before collecting personal information.
      • In light of these developments, whether Facebook (or any other company) is a “party” under the Wiretap Act is effectively an academic question. In fact, the Ninth Circuit has dismissed other Wiretap Act claims against Facebook based   on   the   company’s   changed   practices   requiring consent   before   tracking   subscribers.   So   the   claimed “importance” of the question presented is no reason at all to grant Facebook’s petition.
      • Nor  is  the  purported  split.  Facebook  attempts  to manufacture  a  “general” circuit conflict  over  the  Act’s party  exemption.  But  several  decisions  that it cites as generating this conflict did not interpret that provision at all.  And,  as  Facebook  admits,  several  others  involved entirely  different  facts  (e.g., oral  communications),  thus giving little indication as to how the circuits would apply the statute  to  the  type  of  electronic  communications at issue here. Facebook is left only with some weak tension between the decision below and a decision from the Third Circuit.  But  later  cases  from  the  Third  Circuit  itself suggest even that is disappearing on its own accord.
  • Utah became the second state in the United States (U.S.) to enact a law that would allow companies that suffer a data breach to fend off state lawsuits by asserting they followed a prescribed cybersecurity regime. This defense would not be available in all circumstances, however. H.B. 80 Data Security Amendments would allow a person or entity that “creates, maintains, and reasonably complies with a written cybersecurity program” to assert an affirmative defense against lawsuits from people claiming injury in the event the person or entity was breached. Provisions of this nature may be trying to enshrine in law the commonly accepted truth in the cybersecurity world that almost no private sector entities can withstand the attempts of sophisticated hackers to penetrate their systems. Undoubtedly lawmakers had in mind the power of incentives, for if companies adhering to one of the cybersecurity regimes receives legal protection, many companies will bolster their cybersecurity. It may also be the means by which companies in Utah are forestalling legal liability in the event of a breach, as many industry stakeholders and Republicans claim class action and plaintiffs attorneys hunt opportunistically for defendants with deep pockets to sue with little of the proceeds going to the plaintiffs or class. Nonetheless, this new defense would not be available if three conditions are true:
    • the person had actual notice of a threat or hazard to the security, confidentiality, or integrity of personal information;
    • the person did not act in a reasonable amount of time to take known remedial efforts to protect the personal information against the threat or hazard; and
    • the threat or hazard resulted in the breach of system security.
    • Moreover, the statute defines what shall constitute a “written cybersecurity program:”
      • a person’s written cybersecurity program reasonably conforms to a recognized cybersecurity framework if the written cybersecurity program:
      • (a) is designed to protect the type of personal information obtained in the breach of system security; and
      • (b) (i) is a reasonable security program described in Subsection (2);
      • (ii) reasonably conforms to the current version of any of the following frameworks or publications, or any combination of the following frameworks or publications:
      • (A) NIST special publication 800-171;
      • (B) NIST special publications 800-53 and 800-53a;
      • (C) the Federal Risk and Authorization Management Program Security Assessment Framework;
      • (D) the Center for Internet Security Critical Security Controls for Effective Cyber Defense; or
      • (E) the International Organization for Standardization/International Electrotechnical Commission 27000 Family – Information security management systems;
  • The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) adopted a final rule requiring voice service providers to better combat spam and robocalls. Congress passed the “Telephone Robocall Abuse Criminal Enforcement and Deterrence Act” (TRACED Act) (P.L. 116-41) that tasked the FCC with a rulemaking to implement. In the final rule, the FCC stated:
    • In this document, the Commission adopts rules to implement the TRACED Act and require voice service providers to better police their networks. Specifically, the Commission requires voice service providers to meet certain affirmative obligations and to better police their networks against illegal calls. Second, the Commission expands its existing call blocking safe harbor to cover network-based blocking of certain calls that are highly likely to be illegal. Third, the Commission adopts rules to provide greater transparency and ensure that both callers and consumers can better identify blocked calls and ensure those that are wanted are un-blocked, consistent with the TRACED Act. Finally, the Commission broadens its point-of-contact requirement to cover caller ID authentication concerns under the TRACED Act.
  • The University of Toronto’s Citizen Lab studied ByteDance’s TikTok and Douyin, its two short video sharing apps and performed “a comparative analysis of security, privacy, and censorship issues.” Citizen Lab found:
    • TikTok and Douyin do not appear to exhibit overtly malicious behavior similar to those exhibited by malware. We did not observe either app collecting contact lists, recording and sending photos, audio, videos or geolocation coordinates without user permission.
    • Despite not exhibiting overtly malicious behavior, Douyin contains features that raise privacy and security concerns, such as dynamic code loading and server-side search censorship. TikTok does not contain these features.
    • TikTok and Douyin’s Android apps share many parts of their source code. We postulate that ByteDance develops TikTok and Douyin starting out from a common code base and applies different customizations according to market needs. We observed that some of these customizations can be turned on or off by different server-returned configuration values. We are concerned but could not confirm that this capability may be used to turn on privacy-violating hidden features.
    • Both TikTok and Douyin have source code for restricting search results for content labeled as “hate speech,” “suicide prevention,” and “sensitive.” We suspect the “sensitive” field restriction refers to content that is “politically sensitive” but could not confirm.
    • The evidence we collected is inconclusive about whether TikTok employs political censorship of user posts. We did not test for post censorship on Douyin
    • Douyin restricts some political terms in search. TikTok did not restrict any of the keywords we tested.
  • Public Citizen has updated a report on how much money technology companies are spending on lobbying and political activities in Washington, DC. The organization claims Amazon and Facebook are the two top spending lobbying companies now and “Big Tech” spends more than “Big Oil” and “Big Tobacco.” Public Citizen asserted:
    • This is an update of that report, based on data provided by the Center for Responsive Politics. Since the 2020 election cycle has ended, Public Citizen reevaluated Big Tech’s influence over the government by analyzing the tech companies’ lobbying spending and campaign contributions.
    • Here are the key findings of this report:
      • Facebook and Amazon are now the two biggest corporate lobbying spenders in the country.
      • Big Tech has eclipsed yesterday’s big lobbying spenders, Big Oil and Big Tobacco. In 2020, Amazon and Facebook spent nearly twice as much as Exxon and Philip Morris on lobbying.
      • During the 2020 election cycle, Big Tech spent $124 million in lobbying and campaign contributions –– breaking its own records from past election cycles.
      • Amazon and Facebook drove most of this growth. From the years of 2018-2020, Amazon increased spending by 30% while Facebook added an astounding 56% to its Washington investment.
      • The four Big Tech companies recruited more lobbyists into their army, increasing its ranks by 40 new lobbyists, from 293 in 2018 to 333 in 2020.[10]
      • Big Tech PACs, lobbyists, and employees contributed over 33% more in the 2020 election cycle than they did in the 2018 cycle, for an increase of over $4 million in funds, and a total of nearly $16.5 million in contributions to the election cycle. This marks the greatest cycle-over-cycle increase in campaign contributions from Big Tech in the ten-year span Public Citizen reviewed.
      • Big Tech’s lobbyists are not just numerous, they are also among the most influential in Washington. Among the 10 lobbyists who were the biggest contributors to the 2020 election cycle, half lobby on behalf of at least one of the four Big Tech companies. Together, just these five lobbyists contributed over $2 million to the 2020 elections.
      • Nearly all (94%) members of Congress with jurisdiction over privacy and antitrust issues have received money from a Big Tech corporate PAC or lobbyist. In total, just in 2020, Big Tech PACs and lobbyists have contributed about $3.2 million to lawmakers tasked with regulating them.
  • The Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee Chair Joe Manchin (D-WV), Ranking Member John Barasso (R-WY), and other members of the committee wrote Secretary of Energy Jennifer Granholm “to express our support for the Office of Cybersecurity, Energy Security, and Emergency Response (CESER), and for maintaining its current leadership structure.” They urged Granholm “to continue to prioritize cybersecurity by preserving the CESER office and upholding its leadership at the Assistant Secretary level.” The Senators argued:
    • The reliability and resilience of the electric grid is critical to the economic and national security of the United States. Nearly every sector of our economy, including healthcare, defense, finance and manufacturing, relies on electric power to function.  Top officials within the intelligence, defense, and power communities have warned that the United States remains vulnerable to cyberattacks that could result in catastrophic damage to public health and safety, economic security, and national security.
    • Recent news reports have illustrated that our adversaries are actively seeking to exploit holes in U.S. internet networks and control systems, which leaves our electric grid and other critical infrastructure vulnerable to foreign surveillance and potential disruption.  In the 2019 World Wide Threat Assessment, the Office of the Director of National Intelligence stated that “[o]ur adversaries and strategic competitors will increasingly use cyber capabilities – including cyber espionage, attack, and influence – to seek political, economic and military advantage over the United States and its allies and partners.”  Russia, in particular, has demonstrated its willingness and ability to disrupt electrical networks like it did in Ukraine in 2015 and 2016 leaving 230,000 residents in the dark. 
    • As you know, CESER was created in 2018 to support the expanded national security responsibilities assigned to the Department, and led by an Assistant Secretary to appropriately focus on the importance of cybersecurity to its many missions.  CESER plays a vital role in protecting the nation’s critical energy infrastructure from cyber threats, physical attacks, and other disruptive events. It helps maintain situational awareness, coordinates emergency support functions under the National Response Framework, and carries out its responsibilities as the Sector-Specific Agency for the energy sector by working in a collaborative and integrated manner with industry, as well as Federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial jurisdictions.
  • Parler responded to House Oversight and Reform Committee Chair Carolyn Maloney’s (D-NY) 8 February 2021 letter asking the company to produce documents related to its role in the 6 January 2021 insurrection at the United States (U.S.) Capitol. Parler reiterated claims it was scapegoated by “Big Tech” because it poses a threat to social media platforms and is not a party to the coordinated censorship of conservative viewpoints. The company also argued it referred over 50 instances of violent content to the Federal Bureau of Investigation before 6 January 2021. Parler asserted:
    • There is no truth to the absurd conspiracy theories that have been put forth by Big Tech and its media allies to unfairly malign the Company and which were referenced in the Committee’s Letter. Contrary to what has been reported, and as explained in more detail below: the Company is and always has been American-owned and controlled; Parler has never engaged in any collusion with “the Russians”; and Parler never offered President Donald J. Trump an ownership interest in the Company.
    • The Committee’s interest in Parler appears to stem from a coordinated and widespread disinformation campaign designed to scapegoat Parler for the riots at the U.S. Capitol on January 6, 2021, and to justify Big Tech’s unlawful and anticompetitive decision to de-platform Parler just when Parler was beginning to grow in size and strength, thereby presenting a viable threat to Big Tech’s stranglehold on social media. As Big Tech companies have become more brazen in their politically biased censorship, Americans have grown increasingly alarmed and distrustful of platforms like Facebook and Twitter, abandoning them for Parler’s refreshingly hands-off and viewpoint-neutral approach to political speech. By November 2020, Parler was the primary beneficiary of this shift away from the corporate Big Tech oligarchs, and Parler was in fact the most downloaded app on Apple’s U.S. App Store and on Google’s U.S. Play Store, becoming more popular than TikTok, Zoom, and YouTube.  By the end of 2020, Parler was the tenth most downloaded app for the year, and Parler again boasted the most downloaded app on January  8,  2021,  the  day  after  Facebook  and  Twitter  banned  President  Trump  from  their  platforms. Parler’s rising popularity made the Company a competitive threat to the likes of Twitter and Facebook—Big  Tech  giants  which  use  manipulative  algorithms  to  drive  traffic  and  derive  enormous  profits  from digital advertising. And that threat grew very real in late 2020 and early 2021, when Parler was poised for even  more  explosive  growth  given  the  widespread  expectation  that  President  Trump  would  move  his social media presence to Parler, bringing many of his 90 million followers with him.  So, together, the Big Tech companies colluded with Amazon  to destroy Parler and used the horrific attacks on the Capitol on January 6, 2021 as a shameful excuse.
    • Parler now writes to set the record straight and provide new information about the positive role Parler  played  in  the  days  and  weeks  leading  up  to  January  6th,  which  should  finally  put  an  end  to  the spurious allegations against the Company.  Everyone knows that Parler stands proudly for the fundamental American values of freedom of speech and expression. However, Parler has always recognized that there are legal limitations on free speech.  The Company has acted to remove incitement and threats of violence from its platform and did so numerous times in the days before the unlawful rioting at the Capitol.  As Parler  grew  substantially  in  the  latter  half  of  2020,  the  Company  took  the  extraordinary  initiative  to develop  formal  lines  of  communication  with  the  Federal  Bureau  of  Investigation  (“FBI”)  to  facilitate proactive cooperation and referrals of violent threats and incitement to law enforcement. In fact, in the days and weeks leading up to January 6th, Parler referred violent content from its platform to the FBI for investigation over 50 times, and Parler even alerted law enforcement to specific threats of violence being planned at the Capitol.

Further Reading

  • Anyone with an iPhone can now make deepfakes. We aren’t ready for what happens next.” By Geoffrey Fowler — The Washington Post. Deepfakes apps have already hit the app stores, and for now the quality allows viewers to understand they are not real. But the technology will inevitably become so seamless and convincing we will not know, posing all sorts of societal, policy, and legal questions. What are the ethics of making a deepfake video of a person you do not like saying or doing embarrassing or offensive things? This is already a huge and growing problem for women as many have had their faces or images used in deepfake pornography.
  • The billionaire boom” By Nitasha Tiku and Jay Greene — The Washington Post. Of course, the tech titans got even richer during the pandemic, but will their growing wealth and the ongoing struggles of many families in the United States (U.S.) change tax policy? It is an open question.
  • Inside the Democrats’ strategy to bombard Big Tech” By Jonathan Swan and Margaret Harding McGill — Axios. The House Judiciary Committee’s Antitrust, Commercial, and Administrative Law Subcommittee Chair David Cicilline (D-RI) laid out his strategy for getting changes to antitrust and anti-competition laws and seems to be working against the notion that it is easier to ask Members to vote once a big bill and instead ask them to vote on a number of bills. This may work because different coalitions could be assembled for each of the smaller bills. On the other hand, the notion that technology companies and their many well-paid lobbyists (I used to be one) lack the bandwidth to fight ten bills instead of one is not on the mark, I find.
  • How Anti-Asian Activity Online Set the Stage for Real-World Violence” By Davey Alba — The New York Times. There appears to be a link between the right wing and white nationalist rhetoric online about COVID-19 being a bioweapon the People’s Republic of China unleashed on the world and the alarming rise in hate crimes against Asian Americans. Much of the rhetoric bordered on racism or was outright racist. Social media platforms took some steps to stem the tide.
  • Biden White House’s Ties to Big Tech Are Detailed in New Disclosures” By Chad Day — The Wall Street Journal. It is not clear that former allegiances or positions necessarily dictate present or future allegiances and positions. For example, the Senator Joe Biden (D-DE) that ran for President in 1988 might not believe the positions President Joe Biden (D) is taking in 2021. That being said, there may be a case to be made about the links senior government officials have to “Big Tech” in the current administration. Where the rubber and the road meet however is when someone like National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan is tasked with managing the federal government’s response to the Microsoft Exchange hack even though he served on a Microsoft advisory board and the White House’s ethics rules bar employees from working on matters affecting former employers or clients. The White House seems to be finessing this by asserting Sullivan is not in charge but rather Deputy National Security Advisor for Cyber & Emerging Technology Anne Neuberger is leading the effort. Sullivan will also divest his stakes in Microsoft, Google, and Facebook according to the White House, and other advisors will do the same, according to the White House.

Coming Events

  • The Senate Appropriations Committee’s Commerce, Justice, Science, and Related Agencies Subcommittee may hold a hearing on FY 2022 budget request for the National Science Foundation and the competitiveness of the United States on 13 April.
  • The Senate Appropriations Committee’s Defense Subcommittee may hold a hearing on the Department of Defense’s innovation and research on 13 April.
  • On 14 April, the Senate Intelligence Committee will hold open and closed hearings with the heads of the major United States intelligence agencies and Director of National Intelligence Avril Haines on worldwide threats.
  • The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) will hold an open meeting on 22 April with this draft agenda:
    • Text-to-988. The Commission will consider a Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking to increase the effectiveness of the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline by proposing to require covered text providers to support text messaging to 988. (WC Docket No. 18-336)
    • Commercial Space Launch Operations. The Commission will consider a Report and Order and Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking that would adopt a new spectrum allocation for commercial space launch operations and seek comment on additional allocations and service rules. (ET Docket No. 13-115)
    • Wireless Microphones. The Commission will consider a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking that proposes to revise the technical rules for Part 74 low-power auxiliary station (LPAS) devices to permit a recently developed, and more efficient, type of wireless microphone system. (RM-11821; ET Docket No. 21-115)
    • Improving 911 Reliability. The Commission will consider a Third Notice of Proposed Rulemaking to promote public safety by ensuring that 911 call centers and consumers receive timely and useful notifications of disruptions to 911 service. (PS Docket Nos. 13-75, 15-80; ET Docket No. 04-35
    • Concluding the 800 MHz Band Reconfiguration. The Commission will consider an Order to conclude its 800 MHz rebanding program due to the successful fulfillment of this public safety mandate. (WT Docket No. 02-55)
    • Enhancing Transparency of Foreign Government-Sponsored Programming. The Commission will consider a Report and Order to require clear disclosures for broadcast programming that is sponsored, paid for, or furnished by a foreign government or its representative. (MB Docket No. 20-299)
    • Imposing Application Cap in Upcoming NCE FM Filing Window. The Commission will consider a Public Notice to impose a limit of ten applications filed by any party in the upcoming 2021 filing window for new noncommercial educational FM stations. (MB Docket No. 20-343)
    • Enforcement Bureau Action. The Commission will consider an enforcement action.
  • The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) will hold a workshop titled “Bringing Dark Patterns to Light” on 29 April.
  • On 27 July, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) will hold PrivacyCon 2021.

© Michael Kans, Michael Kans Blog and michaelkans.blog, 2019-2021. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Michael Kans, Michael Kans Blog, and michaelkans.blog with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

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