Sekoia Rogers

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On December 12, 2018, the Federal Communications Commission (“FCC” or “Commission”) adopted a Declaratory Ruling that finds Short Messaging Service (SMS) and Multimedia Messaging Service (MMS) are “information services” under the Communications Act and that these services are not “telecommunications services” or “commercial mobile services”.  As a result, SMS/MMS won’t be subjected to the regulatory burdens that apply to telecommunications and commercial mobile services and, according to the FCC, consumers will be able to continue…
Two years into Ajit Pai’s chairmanship, a central theme at the Federal Communications Commission (“FCC” or “Commission”) is deregulation. Sometimes framed in terms of “modernizing media rules,” the topic is at the forefront of just about every proceeding.  This was true for one of the most recent decisions at the Commission, as a Report and Order was adopted on December 10, 2018 which will eliminate the need to post and maintain broadcast licenses at a…
We wrote on July 5 that the FCC released a Draft NPRM intended to significantly relax the Kid Vid rules. The Commission officially adopted the NPRM at its July meeting on July 12. The Commission’s Media Bureau has now announced that comments will be due for the Children’s Television Programming NPRM on Sept. 24 and reply comment will be due by Oct. 23.…
When FCC Commissioner Michael O’Rielly published a blog post back in January that called for the reexamination of the Children’s Programming Requirements, we questioned whether the requirements would still exist in the near future. We can now report that we are not likely to see the complete demise of the FCC’s Children Programming Requirements (colloquially known as “Kid Vid”). Instead, the FCC released a draft Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) on June 21 intended to…
Since Chairman Pai took over the leadership of the FCC, he has emphasized that one of his main goals has been to “close the digital divide and bring the benefits of the Internet age to all Americans.” So it comes as no surprise that the FCC has taken several measures recently to overhaul the Lifeline program under the tagline “Bridging the Digital Divide for Low-Income Consumers.” These measures include approving a Fourth Report and Order,…
The fight over the Open Internet (better known as net neutrality) continued Thursday with the Federal Communications Commission voting to reverse the 2015 Title II Order, which reclassified broadband Internet access as a “telecommunications service.” This decision means that the Internet will return to its pre-2015 Title I “information service” classification (For a history of how we got to this point, read our past CommLaw posts here). Furthermore, the Commission’s Order removes…
If you’re a traditional landline user who grew up prank calling friends, you’re probably familiar with the dialing code *67, which blocked the outgoing Caller ID information from being transmitted to the call recipient. But you probably didn’t know that, under one of the FCC’s privacy rules, your decision to block your Caller ID transmission also meant that the telephone companies were prohibited from disclosing that Caller ID information to just about anyone, including law…
Florida Finds No Public Performance Right in Pre-1972 Sound Recordings   If you have been following the ongoing saga regarding the attempts of pre-1972 (aka “oldies”) sound recording owners to collect royalties when those recordings are performed, you will know that some recent key court rulings have been issued near major holidays. For example, New York’s highest state court found near Christmastime that those owners had no such right in New York, and the Second…