12/31. Limbach & Limbach, a San Francisco based intellectual property firm, with an emphasis on patent prosecution and litigation, ceased providing legal services.
12/31. The FCC did not meet its self imposed deadline of Dec. 31, 2000 for completing its review of the merger of AOL and Time Warner. Nor has it completed its review within 180 days of the filing of the application on Feb. 11, 2000. The FCC has promulgated no rules governing its antitrust merger review proceedings. However, it does have an informal timelime that provides for completion of reviews within 180 days. See also, FCC's AOL TW web page.
12/29. The U.S. District Court (SDNY) issued a permanent injunction against Internet stock trader In Shig Ahn. This order merely prevents Ahn from committing future violations of federal securities laws. Previously, Ahn disgorged ill gotten gains, and plead guilty in a parallel criminal action for securities fraud and wire fraud. This was Ahn's scam: he opened an online account with Terra Nova (TN) with $351,950 in bad checks. He also opened a second online account with Interactive Brokers (IB), and set up an electronic communications network. Before his bad checks could bounce, he traded between his two online accounts, intentionally creating losses in the TN account and corresponding gains in the IB account. Before he could withdraw his gains from the IB account, IB froze his account, the checks bounced, and the SEC and U.S. Attorneys Office filed civil and criminal proceedings against him. (SEC v. In Shig Ahn, Case No. 00 Civ. 4416 (RCC), filed June 15, 2000.) See, SEC release.
12/29. Cal. Gov. Gray Davis nominated Joan Irion to be a judge of the San Diego County Superior Court. Irion is currently managing shareholder of the San Diego based law firm of Heller Ehrman. She is a tax specialist whose work includes tax aspects of e-commerce, technology and intellectual property. See, Davis release.
12/29. Bill Clinton announced three recess appointments to the National Commission on Libraries and Information Science (NCLIS): Donald Robinson, Marilyn Mason, and Paulette Holahan. The NCLIS, which is composed of 14 members who serve 5 year terms, is an advisory agency only. It advises the President and Congress on library and information services policies and plans. Recently, it has studied and issued reports that address protecting children from Internet porn. See, Clinton statements re Robinson, Mason, and Holahan.
12/29. The Antitrust Division of the USDOJ published in the Federal Register a notice that lists new members of the Wireless Application Protocol (WAP) Forum. The WAP Forum provided the list to the DOJ and FTC for the purpose of limiting the recovery of antitrust plaintiffs to actual damages under specified circumstances, pursuant to § 6(a) of the NCRP Act. The See, Federal Register, Dec. 29, 2000, Vol. 65, No. 251, at page 83096 - 83098.
12/29. The Information Office of the State Council (SCIO) of the People's Republic of China (PRC) issued licenses to Internet content providers Sina.com and Sohu.com to operate in the PRC. SCIO regulates foreign media in the PRC, including Internet content and services providers. Sohu.com Inc. is a Delaware corporate based in Beijing. It wrote in its Nov. 14, 2000 10-Q Statement filed with the US SEC that "Even if we are in compliance with PRC governmental regulations relating to licensing and foreign investment prohibitions, the PRC government may prevent us from distributing, and we may be subject to liability for, content that it believes is inappropriate." Sina.com Inc. is based in Sunnyvale California and Hong Kong. It wrote in its Nov. 14, 2000 10-Q Statement filed with the SEC that "The telecommunication, information and media industries in China remain highly regulated. Although the Company believes its business in China is in compliance with existing Chinese laws and regulations, the Company cannot be sure that the Chinese regulatory authorities will view such business as in compliance with Chinese laws and regulations."
12/29. The FBI's NIPC issued an advisory dated Dec. 28 regarding possible distributed denial of service attacks (DDOS). It stated: "Based on FBI investigations and other information, the NIPC advises taking some extra precautions in computer security over the holiday period to reduce the possibility of, or damage from, Distributed Denial-of-Service (DDOS) and other cyber attacks which could occur. The NIPC believes DDOS attacks could occur over the holiday. Several security companies have cited the threat of DDOS attacks, and some have taken place already." See, Advisory No. 00-063. The NIPC issues three levels of warnings: assessments, advisories, and alerts. Advisories, such the one released on Dec. 28, are of the middle level of significance.
12/29. The U.S. Court of Appeals (9th Cir.) issued its opinion in Kassbaum v. Steppenwolf Productions, Inc. (SPI), a case involving § 32(1)(a) of the Lanham Act. At issue is whether Nicholas Kassbaum, a former bass player for the sixties biker band Steppenwolf, can refer to himself as a "former member of Steppenwolf" in promotional materials. Kassbaum now plays in a band of geriatric rock stars known as the World Classic Rockers. Kassbaum also signed a contract with SPI in 1980 that included broad language -- "waive, relinquish and release any and all . . . rights in the name 'STEPPENWOLF' or any other word or phrase incorporating the name 'STEPPENWOLF' for any purpose whatsoever". The District Court held that Kassbaum both breached the contract and violated the Lanham Act. The Court did not rule on three other claims (unfair competition, trademark infringement and dilution of trademark). The unanimous Appeals Court panel reversed on both the contract and Lanham Act grounds, and remanded. The Appeals Court ruled that Kassbaum's references to his prior membership in Steppenwolf would not create a "likelihood of confusion." The Court also quoted from Justice Holmes' opinion in Prestonettes: "When the mark is used in a way that does not deceive the public we see no such sanctity in the word as to prevent its being used to tell the truth." Kassbaum and John Kay (SPI) have a long history of disputes and litigation. There were born to be litigious. See also, Steppenwolf's Greatest Hits at Amazon.com.
12/29. An individual named Ilene Armour filed a complaint [PDF] in U.S. District Court (NDCal) against Network Associates, Inc. (NAI), its CEO, William Larson, and its CFO, Prabhat Goyal, alleging violation of federal securities laws. The plaintiff, who seeks class action status, is represented by several law firms, including Milberg Weiss. Count one alleges violation of § 10(b) of the Exchange Act, and Rule 10(b)(5) thereunder (fraud). Count two alleges violation of § 20(a) of the Exchange Act (controlling person liability). NAI is based in Santa Clara, Calif., and makes network and computer security products, including firewall, intrusion detection encryption, sniffer, network management, and anti-virus products. This action seeks to represent purchasers of NAI stock between July 19, 2000 and Dec. 26, 2000. There is another action brought under federal securities law in the U.S. District Court (NDCal) against NAI that has been certified as a class action: In re Network Associates Inc. Securities Litigation. Robert Vatuone is the lead plaintiff; Lieff Cabraser is lead counsel; and Judge William Alsup is presiding. It is in pre-trial discovery. The class period for that action is Jan. 1998 through April 1999. Milberg Weiss had sought unsuccessfully to be appointed lead counsel in that case also.
12/28. An individual named Michael Clement filed a complaint [PDF] in U.S. District Court (NDCal) against Foundry Networks and several of its officers and directors alleging violation of federal securities laws. The plaintiff, who seeks class action status, is represented by Wm. Lerach of the law firm of Milberg Weiss. The one count complaint alleges that defendants made false statements in violation of Section 10(b) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, and Rule 10b-5 thereunder. Foundry, based in San Jose, Calif., makes high-performance, end-to-end switching and routing equipment, including Internet routers, Layer 3 switches and Layer 4-7 Internet traffic and content management switches. Its products are used by large ISPs, including AOL, EarthLink, AT&T WorldNet, MSN, and Cable & Wireless, and by smaller ISPs. Its products are also used in large enterprise, entertainment, pharmaceutical and manufacturing companies, and by search engines, e-commerce sites, universities and government organizations. Milberg Weiss is a law firm that specializes in bringing securities class action suits against technology companies when their stock prices drop.
12/28. The SEC filed a complaint in U.S. District Court (SDFl) against a business named Web Hosting Headquarters Partnership, and several of its principals and telemarketers, alleging that they engaged in a fraudulent securities offering. The SEC also sought, and obtained, an emergency temporary restraining order that bars defendants from continued violation of the federal securities laws, freezes assets, and appoints a receiver. The complaint states that defendants ran a boiler-room telemarketing operation for the sale of partnership interests in a web site hosting business, and lied to investors about the business. See, SEC release.
12/28. The PRC state news agency Xinhua reported that the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress adopted an "Internet safety" law. It stated that "The decision on Internet Safety stipulates that intrusions into the computer networks of state affairs, national defense and high-tech fields shall be punishable in accordance with the criminal law, as will the production and transmission of computer viruses. Using computer networks, or the Internet, for the purpose of subverting the government, splitting national unity or committing other crimes shall be penalized according to law. See, Xinhua release.
12/28. A company named Creedon Capital Management filed a complaint [PDF] in U.S. District Court (EDVa) against PSINet, and several of its officers and directors, alleging violation of federal securities laws. The plaintiff, who seeks class action status, is represented by several law firms, including Milberg Weiss. Count one alleges violation of § 11 of the Securities Act. Count two alleges violation of § 12(a)(2) of the Securities Act. Count three alleges violation of § 15 of the Securities Act. On Nov. 3, 2000, Milberg Weiss filed another class action complaint in the same court against PSINet alleging violation federal securities laws. The Court dismissed that complaint (and 13 of 14 other complaints) on Dec. 21, 2000. That action sought to represent all purchasers of PSINet stock between May 9, 2000 and Nov. 2, 2000. The just filed action seeks to represent purchasers of shares of the 7% Series D cumulative convertible preferred stock of PSINet pursuant and/or traceable to the its Aug. 3, 2000 Prospectus. PSINet provides corporate Internet access, private IP networks, Internet security, web and database hosting services, e-commerce solutions, and voice, fax, live audio-video, and other applications. Milberg Weiss specializes in bringing securities class action suits against technology companies when their stock prices drop.
12/28. Bill Clinton signed an Executive Order which revoked Executive Order 12834, effective at noon on January 20, 2001. He issued the original order on Jan. 20, 1993, just after taking the oath of office. The original order barred senior appointees in any executive agencies from lobbying any officer or employee of that agency with five years after leaving office. There is still a one year bar on lobbying imposed by statute. See also, statement by Clinton aide Beth Nolan.
12/28. Napster filed a complaint in U.S. District Court (NDCal) against online retailer Sport Service alleging trademark infringement. Napster, which has been sued by recording companies for infringing their copyrights, alleges that the defendant is selling t-shirts and hats with its name and logo at Napsterstore.com in violation of its trademark rights. Napster applied to the USPTO for a trademark on Sept. 27, 2000 for the design of a cat with earphones. (See, USPTO No. 76137325. See also, TESS.)
12/28. The European Patent Office put 51 Board of Appeals Decisions online in its web site in PDF. The decisions are dated May through December of 2000.
12/28. The Defense Dept., GSA, and NASA published a notice and draft rule in the Federal Register which amends the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) by allowing signing bonuses, retention bonuses, and certain recruitment practices. The notice states that the purpose is to make the government competitive with the private sector in hiring and keeping "employees with critical skills (such as scientists and engineers in the software and systems integration fields)." The draft rule allows for "Signing bonuses needed to recruit employees with critical skills (such as scientists and engineers in fields like software and systems integration), if comparable to the signing bonuses being offered by firms engaged in predominantly non-Government work to attract similar job skills" and "Periodic retention bonuses needed to retain employees with critical skills ..." Public comments are due by Feb. 26, 2001.
12/28. Telia, Sweden's legacy phone company, issued a statement in which it asserts that "A technical analysis performed in response to the December 16 decision of the Swedish National Post and Telecom Agency (PTS) to not approve Telia's application for a UMTS licence ... shows that Telia meets the PTS' requirements by a wide margin." On Dec. 16 the Swedish PTS awarded UMTS licenses to four entities: Europolitan, HI3G, Orange, and Tele2 -- but not Telia. UMTS, or Universal Mobile Telecommunications System, is one Third Generation (3G) wireless technology. It is a successor to the European GSM standard. It has the goal of providing broadband mobile Internet access at 2Mbps. See, UMTS Forum. The PTS awarded the licenses on the basis of its assessment of merit, rather than by competitive auction. Ten applied in this beauty contest. Telia was rejected on the grounds of "deficiency of technical feasibility." Telia insists that it can provide a UMTS cellular network covering 99.98% of Sweden with 4,100 radio base stations. See, PTS press release.
12/28. Calif. Gov. Gray Davis announced the appointment of John Stewart as a Judge of the San Francisco County Superior Court. He is currently a senior partner in the San Francisco office of the law firm of Carroll Burdick & McDonough. He is a defense counsel who has litigated complex civil claims involving trade secrets, financial institutions, securities, computer keyboard manufacturers, and professional liability. See, Davis release.
12/27. The U.S. District Court (CDCal) sentenced Steve Shklovskiy and Yan Shtok to 27 months in federal prison and ordered them to pay more than $100,000 in restitution. The two Russian born men spidered the Internet to harvest e-mail addresses. They then sent over 50,000,000 spam e-mail messages, with forged header information, which promised enormous returns from a bogus work-at-home scheme in exchange for the payment of a $35 processing fee. They forged header information on the e-mails that falsely listed a return address at bigbear.net, a California ISP. 12,405 people were defrauded, BigBear's servers crashed, and it had to assign three workers to respond to complaints for six months. The case is the result of an investigation by the U.S. Postal Inspection Service. Asst. U.S. Atty. Christopher Johnson prosecuted the case. See, release.
12/27. Bill Clinton made a "recess appointment" of an Article III judge. Clinton released a statement that he "appointed Roger Gregory to serve on the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit." The Fourth Circuit includes Maryland, North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia, and West Virginia. The Eastern District of Virginia, which includes the northern Virginia suburbs of Washington DC, is home AOL and many other new economy companies, and has an active technology law docket. This "recess appointment", like Clinton's appointment of Susan Ness to the FCC on Dec. 18, was made in the brief window between the adjournment of the 106th Congress in mid December, and the convening of the 107th Congress in early January. Clinton had sought, but failed to obtain, Senate confirmation of both Ness and Gregory.
12/27. DSL provider Digital Broadband filed a petition for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in U.S. Bankruptcy Court. It also stated that "At the close of business on January 12, we will turn down our network, and Digital Broadband will no longer be providing your voice, data or Internet services."
12/26. Brinks Hofer, an intellectual property law firm based in Chicago, announced that it has named six new shareholders, effective Jan. 1: John Gabrielides, Shannon Mrksich, Joseph Norvell, Steven Oberholtzer, Helen Odar, and Andrew Stover. The firm also named 3 counsel: Colleen Butler, Daniel Schein, and James Richardson. In addition, the firm announced the hiring of 22 new associates and 2 scientific advisors. See, release.
12/26. A U.S. interagency group released a report dated December 2000 titled International Crime Threat Assessment that addresses both criminal violations of intellectual property rights and use of technology to commit and conceal crimes. The report concluded that "As worldwide dependence on technology increases, high-tech crime is becoming an increasingly attractive source of revenue for organized crime groups, as well as an attractive option for them to make commercial and financial transactions that support their criminal activities. With little of the risks and penalties associated with more traditional criminal activity, high-tech crime allows criminals to operate in the relative security of computer networks, often beyond the reach of law enforcement where the crime was committed." See, extended excerpts on technology related subjects.
12/26. An individual named Jean Burke filed a complaint [PDF] in U.S. District Court (WDTex) against pcOrder.com, several of its officers and directors, its controlling shareholder, Trilogy Software, and several underwriters, alleging violations of federal securities laws. The plaintiff, who seeks class action status, is represented by several law firms, including Milberg Weiss. Count one alleges violation of §11 of the Securities Act, 15 U.S.C. §77k, by pcOrder, Trilogy, and the individual defendants. Count two alleges violation of §11 by the underwriter defendants. Count three alleges violation of §15 of the Securities Act, 15 U.S.C. §77o, by all defendants. The suit pertains to the content of two pcOrder registration statements filed with the SEC. Milberg Weiss is a law firm that specializes in bringing securities class action suits against technology companies.
12/26. NetZero filed a complaint in U.S. District Court (CDCal) against Juno alleging patent infringement. NetZero, an ISP and web marketer, asserts that it is the exclusive licensee of U.S. Patent No. 6,157,946, which applies to a process that enables an ISP to display ads or messages through a window that is separate from the browser, and that Juno, a competing ISP, has infringed this patent. NetZero CEO Mark Goldston had this to say: "We believe this patent applies to the ad-delivery process used by many of our competitors for both targeted and untargeted advertisements and will provide NetZero with a significant competitive edge in this environment ..." See, NetZero release.
12/26. The FCC published its Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) in the Federal Register regarding removing some regulatory barriers to the development of secondary markets in spectrum rights. (WT Docket No. 00-230.) The FCC adopted this NPRM at its meeting on Nov. 9, and released it to the public on Nov. 27. Comments are due by Feb. 9, 2001; reply comments are due by March 9, 2001. See, Federal Register, Dec. 26, 2000, Vol. 65, No. 248, at pages 81475 - 81486.
12/26. The FCC released a request for public comments [PDF] on procedures for review of co-locations of antennas under the National Historic Preservation Act (NHPA), Comments are due by Jan. 23, 2001.
12/25. Outgoing Attorney General Janet Reno published an article in The Standard titled "The Threat of Digital Theft: Intellectual Property Theft is Faster, Costlier and More Dangerous than Ever." She stated that "Our citizens, policymakers and law enforcement experts must understand that stealing intellectual property will be prosecuted for what it is: not an exotic, hard-to-prosecute diversion or hobby, but theft, pure and simple." The Department of Justice under Reno has been largely silent on intellectual property issues, and lax in its enforcement of intellectual property related criminal statutes. Intellectual property industry representatives have called upon the DOJ to be more active in this area. President George Bush's nominee to be Attorney General is John Ashcroft.
12/22. Bill Clinton granted a pardon to former Rep. Dan Rostenkowski (D-IL). He lost his bid for re-election in Nov. 1994. He was convicted of two counts of mail fraud in violation of 18 U.S.C. §§ 1341 and 1346 in 1996. See, DOJ release. He had been Chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee. The outgoing Chairman, Rep. Bill Archer (R-TX), retired at the end of the 106th Congress. Two senior members of the Committee are currently seeking the Chairmanship, Rep. Phil Crane (R-IL) and Rep. Bill Thomas (R-CA). Rep. Crane, who is currently the Chairman of the Trade Subcommittee, represents a suburban Chicago district. Rep. Thomas, who is currently the Chairman of the Health Subcommittee, represents the 21st District, which lies between Los Angeles and Fresno, and includes much of Kern and Tulare Counties. In recent years the Committee has addressed many issues that affect technology, including foreign trade, PNTR status for China, foreign sales corporations, trade related aspects of intellectual property, taxation of phone users to fund e-rate subsidies, capital gains from venture capital partnerships, Internet taxation, depreciation of computer equipment, and the excise tax on telephones.
12/22. NTIA chief Greg Rohde released a statement regarding the increase in funding for the NTIA for FY 2001. NTIA funding was increased from $73.4 Million in FY2000 to $100.4M in FY 2001. Technology Opportunities Program (TOP, aka TIIAP) grants were increased from $15.5M to $45.5M. "I want to express my appreciation to Congress," said Rohde. Bill Clinton signed the appropriations bill for the Commerce, Justice, and State Departments for FY 2001 on Dec. 21.
12/22. The USTR published a notice in the Federal Register that it is extending the deadline for public comments on the U.S. Singapore free trade agreement until Jan. 5, 2001. See, Federal Register, Dec. 22, 2000, Vol. 65, No. 247, at pages 80982 - 80983.
12/22. The U.S. District Court (CDCal) granted the SEC's motion for summary judgment in SEC v. Telsys Communications, Home Shopping Partners, and Eleazar Heracleopolis, a civil fraud action pertaining to the fraudulent sale of securities in an Internet shopping mall business. Defendants sold securities in the business, but diverted most of the funds raised to other purposes. The Court found that defendants violated the antifraud, securities registration and broker-dealer registration provisions of various federal securities laws, including §§ 5(a), 5(c) and 17(a) of the Securities Act of 1933, §§ 10b-5 and 15(a) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, and Rule 10b-5 thereunder. The Court also permanently enjoined the defendants from committing future violations of the securities laws, and ordered Heracleopolis to disgorge $502,812 in misappropriated investor funds, and pay a civil penalty of $110,000. See, SEC release.
12/21. Bill Clinton made a recess appointment of James Dorskind to be General Counsel at the Commerce Dept. He previously worked for the law firm of Friedman Ross & Hersh, and for the 1992 Clinton/Gore election campaign. See, White House release.
12/21. Nokia announced that the antitrust waiting period under the Hart-Scott-Rodino Act applicable to Nokia's offer to acquire all outstanding shares of Ramp Networks has been terminated. The FTC informed the parties that their request for early termination of the 15 calendar day waiting period prescribed by the HSR Act was granted. See, Nokia release.
12/21. The U.S. District Court (EDVa) dismissed 14 of 15 lawsuits filed against PSINet and several of its officers that alleged violation of federal securities laws, and sought class action status. The Court granted in part, and denied in part, PSINet's motion to dismiss one remaining action, which was brought by the law firm of Berger & Montague. The Court dismissed claims brought under §10b of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, and Rule 10b5 thereunder (securities fraud). However, the Court denied the motion to dismiss as to claims brought under §§ 11, 12(a)(2) and 15 of the Securities Act of 1933 (regarding statements in registration statement and prospectus). See, PSINet release and Berger & Montague release. PSINet provides corporate Internet access, private IP networks, Internet security, web and database hosting services, e-commerce solutions, and voice, fax, live audio-video, and other applications.
12/21. The SEC announced that it settled a Foreign Corrupt Practices Act matter with IBM. To put the agreement into effect, the SEC filed a complaint in U.S. District Court (DDC) against IBM alleging illegal payments to foreign officials by an IBM subsidiary in Argentina in 1994, in violation of §13(b)(2)(A) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934. IBM consented to the entry of a judgment ordering it to pay a $300,000 penalty; but, it made no admissions. IBM-Argentine entered into a $250 Million contract to integrate and modernize the computer system of a commercial bank owned by the Argentine government. $4.5 Million went to several bank directors. See, SEC release.
12/21. Verio filed a petition with ICANN requesting the termination of ICANN's Registrar Accreditation Agreement with Register.com. See, ICANN release. Verio is currently on the loosing end of litigation with Register.com. On Aug. 3, 2000 Register.com filed a complaint in U.S. District Court (SDNY) against Verio for accessing its Whois database for mass marketing purposes. The complaint and motion for preliminary injunction alleged that Verio's use of software robots to collect information from Register.com's Whois database to solicit Register.com customers to become Verio customers, and misleading of its customers, violates §43(a) of the Lanham Act and the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act of 1986, and constitutes trespass to chattels and breach of contract under the common law of New York. On Dec. 8, the Court found that Register.com had demonstrated both likelihood of success upon the merits, and irreparable harm, on all grounds, and thus issued a preliminary injunction order restraining Verio from "Accessing Register.com's computers and computer networks in any manner, including, but not limited to, by software programs performing multiple, automated, successive queries ..."
12/21. The FCC issued an Order [MS Word] in which it found that AT&T has not complied with its Order approving the merger of AT&T and Media One. This order required AT&T to submit, by December 15, 2000, a statement that it would either (a) divest its interests in TWE, (b) terminate its involvement in TWE's video programming or (c) divest its interests in other cable systems, such that it will have attributable ownership interests in cable systems serving no more than 30% of MVPD subscribers nationwide. AT&T General Counsel James Cicconi wrote a letter to the FCC on Dec. 15 which stated that AT&T made the necessary election. The FCC Order of Dec. 21 states that while AT&T "filed a written document that purports to comply with this condition, we conclude that this submission does not satisfy our Merger Order." (CS Docket 99-251.)
2/21. FCC Chairman Wm. Kennard remained defiant of the Congress on the topic of low power FM licensing. The FCC announced on Dec. 21 that "255 noncommercial educational applicants in 20 states are eligible for new low power FM (LPFM) licenses." See, FCC release. The FCC also announced pending applications. See, release. Chairman Kennard also released a statement. "I predict that as these first stations go on the air," said Kennard, "these new LPFM stations will not create any harmful interference problem for existing radio service." The appropriations bill for the Commerce, Justice and State Departments, which was just enacted into law, limits the FCC's authority to issue LPFM licenses.
12/21. The FCC's Common Carrier Bureau released its bi-annual study titled Trends in Telephone Service. It found, among other things, that the number of lines (and wireless channels) used by homes and small businesses for Internet access with a capacity at least 200 kbps in at least one direction increased to 4.3 Million lines (and wireless channels) in the first half of 2000. This was a 57% increase over the second half of 1999. See, FCC summary [PDF, 2 pages].
12/21. The Antitrust Division of the Dept. of Justice (DOJ) filed its Competitive Impact Statement with the U.S. District Court (DDC) in the proceeding pertaining to WorldCom's acquisition of Intermedia. On Nov. 17 WorldCom and the DOJ reached an agreement regarding WorldCom's acquisition of Intermedia, under which WorldCom agreed to divest all of Intermedia's assets, except its controlling interest in Digex. To put this agreement into effect the DOJ filed a complaint and proposed consent decree in the U.S. District Court (DDC). The objection of the DOJ related to the circumstance that both WorldCom and Intermedia owned Internet backbone networks. Digex provides web and applications hosting for e-businesses.
12/21. Commerce Sec. Norman Mineta gave a speech at the Birney Elementary School in Washington DC at which he discussed high tech jobs and a "digital divide". See also, DOC release.
12/21. MP3.com and Warner Music Group (WMG) entered into a non exclusive marketing and promotion agreement and a video license agreement. See, MP3.com release. In June, WMG settled its claims in the copyright infringement lawsuit brought by affiliates of the five major record companies against MP3.com.