Tech Law Journal

Capitol Dome
News, records, and analysis of legislation, litigation, and regulation affecting the computer, internet, communications and information technology sectors

TLJ Links: Home | Calendar | Subscribe | Back Issues | Reference
Other: Thomas | USC | CFR | FR | FCC | USPTO | CO | NTIA | EDGAR
Tech Law Journal
Daily E-Mail Alert
Oct. 2, 2000
8:00 AM ET.
Alert No. 32.

TLJ Home Page
News from the Web
Tech Law Journal is a free access online publication that provides news, records, and analysis of legislation, litigation, and regulation affecting the computer and Internet industry.

This email service is offered free of charge to anyone who requests it.

Contact TLJ:
P.O. Box 15186, Washington DC, 20003.

Notices & Disclaimers

Privacy Policy

Copyright 1998 - 2000 David Carney, dba Tech Law Journal. All rights reserved.
News Briefs

9/29. The FCC approved BellSouth's and SBC's new entity for cellular and PCS services, named Alloy. Specifically, the FCC issued a Memorandum Order and Opinion (DA 00-2223) in a proceeding on SBC's and BellSouth's application to transfer control of wireless licenses and associated international authorizations; the proceeding was also in the nature of an antitrust merger review analysis. The FCC found that "that the combination of SBC and BellSouth’s U.S. wireless properties will not adversely affect competition ..." See, FCC release.
9/29. The Telecommunications Industry Assoc. (TIA) submitted a report [89 pages in PDF] to the FCC titled "Surveillance of Packet-Mode Technologies." The FCC has responsibility for adopting rules implementing the Communications Assistance for Law Enforcement Act (CALEA). Congress passed the CALEA in 1994 for the purpose of allowing law enforcement authorities to maintain their existing wiretap capabilities in new telecommunications devices. It provides that wireline, cellular, and broadband PCS carriers must make their equipment capable of certain surveillance functions. However, the CALEA also provides that its provisions do not apply to "information services". The FBI has since sought an implementation of CALEA that expands surveillance capabilities beyond those provided in the statute. The FCC has sided with the FBI on most points, and relied on the technical recommendations of the TIA. The FCC adopted its Third Report and Order [huge WP file] in Aug. 1999, adopting the TIA's standard known as J-STD-025. This Order also directed TIA to conduct a study of government surveillance of packet mode technologies, including "steps that can be taken, including particular amendments to J-STD-025, that will better address privacy concerns." The report just published is TIA's response. It also addresses Carnivore. The TIA represents companies that provide communications materials, products, and systems in government relations, market support, and standards development. Phone companies and privacy groups successfully challenged several parts of the FCC's Third Report and Order. See, Aug. 15, 2000 Opinion of the U.S. Court of Appeals (DCCir). See also, TIA release.
9/29. The NIST announced that it will announce its proposed choice for the Advanced Encryption Standard on Monday, Oct. 2 at 11:00 AM ET. See, NIST release.
9/29. The FCC and Industry Canada signed a Letter of Understanding [74 pages in PDF] regarding the introduction of digital television service (DTV) along the US Canada border. The letter covers DTV operations within 400 kilometers on either side of the border. It contains a table of DTV channel allotments for each country and the procedures each country will use in notifying and evaluating proposed DTV facilities. See, FCC release and Industry Canada release.
9/29. The FCC issued a MO&O granting Inmarsat a 9 month extension of the Oct. 1, 2000 deadline by which it must conduct an Initial Public Offering (IPO). It was created in 1979 as a joint venture of governments, but was recently privatized, following pressure from the U.S.
9/29. The Commerce Department's National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) awarded a $34 Million contract to Raytheon for a new high performance computing system (HPCS) to be used to improve understanding of weather and climate. It will be used by NOAA's Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory (GFDL) in Princeton, NJ. SGI will develop the computational hardware and supporting software. StorageTek will supply the equipment for GFDL's data archive. See, NOAA release.
9/29. California Gov. Gray Davis vetoed Assembly Bill 2519, sponsored by Assemblyman Kevin Shelley (D-San Francisco). This bill would establish an Internet Voting Pilot Program in three counties to test the viability of such a system. See, Davis statement.
9/29. California Gov. Gray Davis vetoed Senate Bill 1874, sponsored by Senate Majority Leader Richard Polanco (D-Los Angeles). This bill would require the Secretary of State to develop an online system allowing entities to submit campaign disclosure reports directly into the Secretary of State’s office via the Internet. See, Davis statement.
9/29. ICANN issued a statement regarding the practice of pre-registration of new top level domains (TLDs). Quote: "The Names Council feels it is premature for companies to offer pre-registration services for domain names in speculative new TLDs. To date, no new TLDs have been selected and there is no guarantee that any particular organization will be authorized to take registrations for any particular TLD."
9/29. The ITC's Office of Economics published an article titled "United States-Japan Agreement on Telecommunications Access Fees to Reduce Costs and Likely Increase Competition" in the current issue [PDF 685 KB] of its International Economic Review (IER). See also, ITC release. To request a paper copy, write to the Office of the Secretary, U.S. International Trade Commission, 500 E Street SW, Washington, D.C. 20436, or fax a request to 202-205-2104.
9/29. FCC Commissioner Susan Ness released a statement criticizing NBC and Fox for not televising the debate between George Bush and Al Gore on Oct. 3. ABC and CBS plan to carry the debate. Ness also asserted: "I respect and defend the First Amendment right of broadcasters to determine what programming they will air". See also, statement by FCC Chairman Wm. Kennard.
9/28. FCC Chairman Wm. Kennard gave a speech in St. Paul Minnesota to the Indian Telecom Training Initiative. Quote: "Through the leadership of President Clinton and Vice-President Gore, we have already wired 95% of the nations schools -- and over one million American classrooms -- to the web. Our e-rate program ..."
9/28. The Senate Judiciary Committee approved S 2924, the Internet False Identification Prevention Act of 2000, with an amendment in the nature of a substitute. The bill is sponsored by Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME), and would amend 18 USC § 1028, regarding fraud and related activity in connection with government identification documents.
9/28. The Herrick District Library Board of Trustees in Holland, Michigan, voted unanimously to install filtering software on public Internet terminals. In Feb. 2000, city voters rejected a ballot measure that would have required the city to withhold funds from the library unless it installed Internet filtering software.
9/22. The FTC's Bureau of Consumer Protection submitted Comments on Study of Privacy Issues in Bankruptcy Data to the Department of Justice, the Department of the Treasury, and the Office of Management and Budget. These agencies are conducting a study of how the bankruptcy proceedings affect the privacy of individual consumer information that becomes part of a bankruptcy case. See, notice of the study, and request for public comments, in the Federal Register (July 31, 2000, Vol. 65, No. 147, Pages 46735-46738.) The FTC's comments address two main topics: privacy and identity theft issues raised by the collection and handling of sensitive information in bankruptcy, and the electronic compiling and commercial sale by trustees and creditors of information contained in bankruptcy records. The comments also briefly touch upon the trustee's or debtor in possession's powers to sell assets, including customer information, in violation of debtor's online privacy policy. See, FTC release. See also, TLJ story.
9/20. The U.S. Attorney’s Office (NDCa) charged by information one Jason Everett Spatafore, aka Dis-man, on four counts of criminal copyright infringement for Internet movie piracy in violation of 17 U.S.C. §§ 506(a)(1) and (a)(2) and 18 U.S.C. §§ 2319(b)(3) and (c)(3). The Dis-man reproduced and distributed copies of Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace. See, release
Editor's Note: This column includes all News Briefs added to Tech Law Journal since the last Daily E-Mail Alert. The dates indicate when the event occurred, not the date of posting to Tech Law Journal.
New TLJ Stories

FTC Comments on Privacy in Bankruptcy Proceedings. (10/2) The FTC submitted comments to a group of federal agencies that are studying how bankruptcy proceedings affect the privacy of individuals involved in, or affected by, those proceedings. The FTC advised that personal information in the public record in bankruptcy proceedings can be used to facilitate identity theft and other illegal activities.
Rep. Boucher Introduces Bill to Permit Some Internet Music Copying. (9/29) Rep. Boucher introduced a bill in the House of Representatives that would allow the copying of certain sound recordings on the Internet. It would amend copyright law to provide that the transmission of a personal interactive performance of a sound recording is not an infringement of copyright.
New Documents

TIA: Report to the FCC on Surveillance of Packet- Mode Technologies, 9/29 (PDF, TIA).
FCC/Can.: Letter of Understanding re DTV (PDF, FCC).
Calif.: Assembly Bill 2519 re Internet voting, vetoed 9/29 (HTML, Cal.).
Calif.: Senate Bill 1874 re filing campaign reports on Internet, vetoed 9/29 (HTML, Cal.).
Boucher: HR 5275 IH, Music Owners' Listening Rights Act, introduced 9/25 (HTML, TLJ).
FTC: Comments on Study of Privacy Issues in Bankruptcy Data, 9/22 (HTML, FTC).
New and Updated Sections

Calendar (updated daily).
News from Around the Web (updated daily).
Quote of the Day

"Before Internet voting can be successfully implemented, security measures to protect against fraud and abuse must be more fully developed. Other states are experimenting with online voting with varying degrees of success. I am not convinced the necessary safeguards are in place to begin this experiment in California. Accordingly, I am returning AB 2519 without my signature."
Cal. Gov. Gray Davis

Subscriptions | FAQ | Notices & Disclaimers | Privacy Policy
Copyright 1998-2008 David Carney, dba Tech Law Journal. All rights reserved.
Phone: 202-364-8882. P.O. Box 4851, Washington DC, 20008.