Telecommunications

  • January 4, 2018

    Top 3 Groups Lobbying The FCC

    The last month of 2017 was a busy one for lobbyists and telecom attorneys as the FCC voted to overturn its 2015 net neutrality rules and teed up further review of its media ownership rules, among other changes. Here are the top three groups that lobbied the FCC in December and a sampling of what they care about.

  • January 4, 2018

    Senate Dem Warns Of Russian Net Neutrality Interference

    Democratic U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson of Florida blasted the GOP-controlled Federal Communications Commission on Wednesday over what he called the “flawed” handling of its net neutrality repeal, which he said was tainted by hundreds of thousands of falsified comments with Russian email addresses that he attributed to Russia’s government.

  • January 3, 2018

    Shearman Guides Liberty Global In Latin American Spinoff

    Publicly traded telecommunications giant Liberty Global PLC recently completed the spinoff of its Latin American operations with help from lawyers at Shearman & Sterling LLP, the firm said Wednesday, with holders of a former tracking stock now possessing shares in an independent company.

  • January 3, 2018

    Broadcasters Praise, Newspapers Pan Online Notice Proposal

    Broadcasters backed proposed rule changes that would allow them to post required notices online instead of in newspapers, but a publisher argued the move would make it harder for consumers to find the information, according to comments filed with the Federal Communications Commission.

  • January 3, 2018

    ZTE Settles In Multi-Defendant Cellphone Patent Suit

    Chinese telecom company ZTE Corp. is settling in a consolidated IP suit from a licensing company that also accuses Apple, Motorola and other mobile heavyweights of infringing on data transfer patents, according to dismissal papers filed in Texas federal court on Wednesday.

  • January 3, 2018

    GN Netcom Denied New Trial In $600M Antitrust Row

    A Delaware federal judge on Wednesday nixed a bid by Jabra headphones parent GN Netcom Inc. to revive a $600 million antitrust suit against rival Plantronics Inc., rejecting claims that evidentiary decisions in the underlying case deprived GN of a fair trial.

  • January 3, 2018

    Conservative Group Blasts Municipal Broadband ‘Hypocrisy’

    A conservative think tank lashed out Wednesday at the “hypocrisy” of local mayors who support a restoration of net neutrality yet purportedly restrict internet use via municipal broadband networks with terms of service that prohibit obscene, hateful or threatening traffic.

  • January 3, 2018

    Carriers Face Obstacles In Geo-Target Rollout, FCC Told

    Smaller wireless carriers are urging the Federal Communications Commission to give them more time to implement geo-targeted emergency alerts, telling the agency that competitive carriers have fewer resources for compliance than larger, incumbent service providers.

  • January 3, 2018

    Alissa Starzak Talks Net Neutrality, US Army, Leap To Startup

    Cloudflare Inc.'s Alissa Starzak discusses her former role as general counsel for the U.S. Army and the lengthy confirmation process leading up to it, as well as her present work in the private sector and views of net neutrality.

  • January 3, 2018

    Canadian Antitrust Watchdog Hires Blake Cassels Partner

    A Blake Cassels & Graydon LLP partner who specializes in high-profile competition litigation in the energy, telecommunications and retail industries has joined Canada’s antitrust watchdog agency, Canada’s Commissioner of Competition said Wednesday.

  • January 2, 2018

    9th Circ. Refuses To Rehear Record Co.’s ‘Empire’ TM Suit

    The Ninth Circuit on Tuesday refused to reconsider its decision to allow Fox’s hit TV show “Empire” to continue using its name, denying a bid by real-life hip hop record label Empire Distribution Inc. for a second chance at arguing its copyright infringement claims.

  • January 2, 2018

    FTC Rings Up Record Of 7M Telemarketing Call Complaints

    Consumer complaints about unwanted telemarketing calls reached unprecedented heights in the 2017 fiscal year, jumping to more than 7 million grievances from 5.3 million the year before, with robocalls drawing the most gripes, the Federal Trade Commission reported recently. 

  • January 2, 2018

    Cumulus Host Can't Shake $1.7M Verdict In Overpayment Row

    A Texas federal judge on Friday rejected radio host Michael Baisden’s bid to escape a jury’s finding that he was overpaid by a Cumulus Media unit and owes $1.7 million in damages, finding he was just replaying previously rejected arguments about his contract.

  • January 2, 2018

    Fed. Circ. Says FCC Clear Of $21M Spectrum-License Suit

    The Federal Communications Commission on Tuesday prevailed once again against bankrupt wireless carrier Alpine PCS Inc.’s $21 million suit over the agency’s sale of its defaulted spectrum licenses, after the Federal Circuit affirmed a federal claims court’s decision tossing the suit for lack of jurisdiction.

  • January 2, 2018

    Apple Knowingly Slows Old IPhones Via Updates, Class Says

    Shortly after Apple Inc. began to accept orders for its newest iPhone models, the company released a software update that diminished the battery life of older iPhones and prompted some customers to spend hundreds of dollars on new phones, claims a proposed class action filed in Florida federal court last Thursday.

  • January 2, 2018

    Cable Industry Group Warns Of Rising Retransmission Fees

    A trade association that represents cable providers had strong words for the broadcast industry on Monday in the fight over rising retransmission fees, saying that cable companies will increasingly be pitted against unrelenting media conglomerates in the new year.

  • January 2, 2018

    50 States To Use AT&T's National First Responder Network

    All 50 states and the District of Columbia have signed on to use FirstNet, AT&T’s planned nationwide emergency response network stemming from a post-9/11 congressional mandate, the telecommunications giant said following the close of an opt-in period for the network.

  • January 2, 2018

    AT&T Sued Over Planned Layoff Of 713 Unionized Workers

    The union Communications Workers of America AFL-CIO asked a Texas federal court Saturday to intervene in AT&T's planned termination of 713 employees, alleging the move violates the collective bargaining agreement between the parties.

  • January 1, 2018

    The Biggest Telecom Developments To Watch In 2018

    With an uptick in media mergers, a Federal Communications Commission agenda that’s laser-focused on deregulation and an impending court battle over net neutrality, major shake-ups are looming on the horizon for the telecom industry.

  • January 1, 2018

    5 Cybersecurity And Privacy Policies To Watch In 2018

    Sweeping European data protection reforms that will echo around the globe, an opaque new cybersecurity law coming into force in China, and enforcement decisions made by a Republican-led Federal Trade Commission head policy watchers' list of cybersecurity and privacy regulations to keep an eye on in 2018.

Expert Analysis

  • Opinion

    Leave The Never-Was-Neutral Net Alone

    Doug Hass

    Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai bills his recent net neutrality proposal as a “repeal” of the 2015 rules, but it really just imposes his own version of net neutrality through impenetrable and ultimately ineffectual disclosures that both harm providers and confuse users, says Doug Hass, general counsel at Lifeway Foods Inc.

  • Series

    40 Years Of FCPA: Highlights From The 1st Corporate Trial

    Robert Feldman

    The Foreign Corrupt Practices Act case of U.S. v. Harris Corp. was tried in March 1991 — so long ago that pretty much only the parties and counsel remember it. With a smile, I’ve just about given up correcting people who say their case is "the only FCPA case ever to be tried,” says Robert Feldman of Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan LLP.

  • Wrestling With Location Data Privacy At The High Court

    Vanessa Arslanian

    Last week during arguments in Carpenter v. United States, both conservative and liberal U.S. Supreme Court justices seemed inclined to limit warrantless government access to historical cell-site location data, but they voiced different ways to do so, says Vanessa Arslanian at Choate Hall & Stewart LLP.

  • Series

    40 Years Of FCPA: The Strange Case That Started It All

    Burton Wiand

    At the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission in April 1978, we filed a case against Page Airways and envisioned the trial of a precedent-setting enforcement action that would have defined Foreign Corrupt Practices Act standards at an early stage. Instead, the matter was settled under circumstances that I am sure are unique in SEC history, says Burton Wiand of Wiand Guerra King PA.

  • Ex Ante Rate Disclosure In Tech Standards, A Decade Later

    Anne Layne-Farrar

    In 2007, the VITA Standards Organization made history — and stirred up a lot of controversy — by adopting a patent policy that mandates “ex ante” royalty rate disclosures. I recently spoke to Ray Alderman, who conceived of and pushed the new policy through implementation, about the factors that have made the policy a success over the last 10 years, says Anne Layne-Farrar of Charles River Associates.

  • The Billing Evolution: How Far Along Is Your Firm?

    Sharon Quaintance

    In a recent study, 20 out of 25 law firms surveyed have made billing process improvement a top priority for 2018. Firms can foster consistency and increase efficiency at all stages of their billing cycle by focusing on a few specific procedures, say Sharon Quaintance and Christine Indiano at HBR Consulting.

  • ITC Not Treating PTAB Decisions Like Other Agency Rulings

    James Barney

    A Patent Trial and Appeal Board decision of unpatentability should have its full legal effect once promulgated, regardless of any appeal taken by the patent owner. Yet that is not how the U.S. International Trade Commission interpreted the inter partes review statute in its Arista order, says James Barney of Finnegan Henderson Farabow Garrett & Dunner LLP.

  • 10 Tips For Effective Practice Before The 5th Circ.

    Justin Woodard

    The Fifth Circuit is among the busiest federal circuit courts in the country. What can you do to increase your chances of reaching oral argument? And if given the opportunity, how can you present a persuasive argument? Former Fifth Circuit clerk Justin Woodard, an associate at Jones Walker LLP, shares some advice.

  • Preparing Your Company Witnesses For The Gotcha Question

    Matthew Keenan

    Catching a witness flat-footed on an important topic is no longer confined to cable news, and corporate legal defenses can likewise die when witnesses profess ignorance on things that jurors believe they should know. However, employing some common sense tools can minimize potential harm, says Matthew Keenan of Shook Hardy Bacon LLP.

  • Series

    Judging A Book: Saris Reviews 'Locking Up Our Own'

    Judge Patti Saris

    Having just completed a six-year term as chair of the U.S. Sentencing Commission, I read Yale Law School professor James Forman's new book, "Locking Up Our Own: Crime and Punishment in Black America," with particular interest, says Judge Patti Saris, chief judge for the U.S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts.