FCC To Examine Federal Ban On Unlocking Cellphones | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

NPR : News

Filed Under:

FCC To Examine Federal Ban On Unlocking Cellphones

Federal Communications Commission Chairman Julius Genachowski says his agency will investigate whether a federal ban on unlocking cellphones is "harmful to economic competitiveness."

Genachowski made the comments during a event hosted by the technology site TechCrunch.

As Bill reported in February, a law that went into effect this year makes it illegal for Americans to unlock — or reprogram — new cellphones. Frustrated, a White House petition to rethink that law garnered more than 100,000 signatures.

TechCrunch adds:

"For six years, the Library of Congress exempted cell phone unlocks from the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, which bans "circumvention" of copy protection schemes. The decision was reversed during the last round of triennial reviews.

"Now users who dare to modify software on the devices they own are subject to legal penalties.

"Genachowski isn't sure what authority he has, but if he finds any, given the tone of the conversation, it's likely he will exert his influence to reverse the decision. 'It's something that we will look at at the FCC to see if we can and should enable consumers to use unlocked phones.'"

Copyright 2013 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

WAMU 88.5

Local Theaters Put 'The Interview' On The Marquee

A handful of theaters nationwide decided to show Sony's "The Interview," and there were several in the D.C. area.

NPR

After The Presents, A Buttery Tea Cake Tradition

For one family in Overland Park, Kan., it's not Christmas without Mrs. Lawrence. The tea cake, rich with butter and spices, is named for the neighbor who would hand deliver it every holiday season.
NPR

What To Expect In The 2016 Presidential Announcement Season

With Jeb Bush signaling he's likely to run for president in 2016, it's another sign that the presidential announcement season is underway. Here's a look at who has jumped in the race early and what to expect in the coming months.
NPR

Online Sellers Pop Up In Real Life, For A Limited Time Only

One-click shopping is changing the ways people shop and retailers sell their wares. But some online retailers are opening physical stores — some of which last as short as a day.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.