Welcome to the Tech & Telecom Weekly, an e-newsletter keeping you apprised of the latest developments in the telecommunications and high-tech industries.
The final Agenda for the next FCC Open Meeting scheduled for November 18, 2020, at 10:30am ET, contains seven items, including the much-heralded 5.9 GHz order, an NPRM proposing expanded TRS funding, and two items related to satellite services. Both Commissioner Starks and Commissioner Rosenworcel released statements last week that pointedly refer to prior agency practice of avoiding “controversial” items during a Presidential transition. Several members of the House Commerce Committee issued a less subtle request. The Open Meeting will be live streamed here. For more information, please contact Stephanie Joyce.
Millions more Americans have access to high-speed broadband, defined as 25 Mbps downstream and 3 Mbps upstream, according to deployment data submitted in 2019. The U.S. also saw a 268% increase in deployment of 250/25 Mbps service. Advances were made in both fixed terrestrial and mobile technologies. Chmn. Pai summarized the data: “In just three years, the number of American consumers living in areas without access to fixed broadband has been almost cut in half.” He stated that the FCC’s work to spur further deployment remains ongoing. For more information, please contact Stephanie Joyce.
The Universal Service Administrative Company (USAC) will hold its monthly Lifeline call on November 18, 2020, from 3:00-4:00pm ET. USAC will provide updates about the Lifeline Program and the National Verifier and the National Lifeline Accountability Database (NLAD), and will discuss upcoming compliance filings. In addition, USAC will hold a webinar on November 19, 2020, from 3:00-4:00pm ET, regarding Lifeline services provided in California, Oregon, and Texas, where regulators have opted out of using NLAD verifications. To view these presentations, register here. For more information about USAC compliance issues, please contact Katherine Barker Marshall.
As previously reported, the decision of the European Court of Justice in Schrems II cast doubt on the continued viability of the “Standard Contractual Clauses” arrangements for data transfers. In response, on November 12, 2020, the European Commission proposed modifications of the Clauses to accommodate the Schrems II judgment. Under the proposals, the current Clauses will remain valid until the proposed revisions take effect. The Commission will accept comments on the proposals until December 10, 2020. For more information, please contact William Baker.
The full Senate Judiciary Committee will hold a hearing titled “Breaking the News: Censorship, Suppression, and the Full 2020 Election,” on November 17, 2020, at 10:00am ET. It will be live streamed here. For more information, please contact Stephanie Joyce.
In the Courts
Last week a federal judge in the Eastern District of Texas suspended a trial due to a COVID-19 outbreak affecting at least one attorney and one juror. The case, ResMan LLC v. Karya Property Management LLC, involves a contract dispute over a property management software platform. A longstanding mecca for patent litigation, EDTX has conducted twenty in-person jury trials since reopening the courthouse in June 2020. Judicial policies concerning COVID-19 precautions vary widely from jurisdiction to jurisdiction, and from week to week. For more information on the status of a particular venue, please contact Susan Metcalfe.
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