Welcome to the Tech & Telecom Weekly, an e-newsletter keeping you apprised of the latest developments in the telecommunications and high-tech industries.
In the Courts
eBay’s lawsuit against three managers at Amazon, eBay Inc. v. Sonja Boch, et al., alleging the poaching of third-party retailers, suffered a major blow recently when an arbitration panel issued a final ruling in favor of the defendants. The complaint, initially filed in the Northern District of California, alleges that defendants directed dozens of sales representatives to create fake eBay accounts in order to contact and lure away “many hundreds” of top eBay sellers. The claims are racketeering, fraud, intentional interference with contractual relations, and violation of California penal laws prohibiting unfair competition and unauthorized computer use. After a transfer to arbitration in accordance with eBay’s user agreement, the panel “concluded that eBay proved the element of breach,” but found that eBay did not prove that it suffered damages. If confirmed by the federal court, the arbitrators’ decision will likely resolve several cases filed by eBay, including eBay, Inc. v. Amazon.com. For more information, please contact Susan Metcalfe.
The North American Numbering Council (NANC) will hold an open meeting on December 3, 2020, at 9:30am ET. The meeting is open to the public and can be accessed here. For more information, please contact Katherine Barker Marshall.
The Universal Service Administrative Company (USAC) reminds Lifeline providers that the program’s new minimum service standards take effect tomorrow, December 1. The new standards include increased usage allowances for mobile data, a higher minimum speed for fixed broadband services, and a phase-down of support for voice services. More information can be found here. Please contact Katherine Barker Marshall for more information about Lifeline services.
On November 25, 2020, after more than three weeks of bidding and an intervening presidential election, the Rural Digital Opportunity Fund Phase I auction (Auction 904) concluded after 19 rounds of bidding. Of the almost 62,000 Census Block Groups eligible for bidding, 57,172 were assigned. The FCC soon will release a Closing Notice regarding post-auction procedures and obligations for winning bidders, including the deadline for a long-form application that will be required as a condition for obtaining funding. Once the Closing Notice issues, the identities of winning bidders and additional auction details will be released. For more information, please contact Doug Bonner.
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