Policy

Public Knowledge Rallies Supporters Against Senate Privacy Reg Rollback

Advocacy group warns that Senate push could come to head this week 3/22/2017 11:04 AM Eastern

Warning that Senate Republicans are pushing for a vote on rolling back FCC broadband privacy regs as early as Thursday (March 23), Public knowledge is trying to get supporters of the regulations to ask their Congresional members to push back.

A privacy advocate confirmed his understanding was a vote in the Senate was likely this week.

Currently, the Senate calendar of pending business scheduled for floor consideration contains the following entry at number 16 on the list: "S.J. Res. 34 Mr. Flake and others Joint resolution providing for congressional disapproval under chapter 8 of title  5, United   
States Code, of the rule submitted by the Federal Communications Commission relating to 'Protecting the Privacy of Customers of Broadband and Other Telecommunications Services."

Public Knowledge, which is a big advocate of the regs, emailed its supporters, requesting they contact both senators and House members to advocate for the rules -- there are efforts in both the Senate and House to use the Congressional Review Act to invalidate the rules -- and to tweet the following: "Contact key Senators and your reps in Congress *today* to tell them to #SaveBroadbandPrivacy: publicknowledge.org/ProtectPrivacy."

ISPs including those represented by NCTA: The Internet & Television Association, support the CRA effort, as well as having the FCC reverse the broadband privacy regs if Congress does not do it first.

They argue that the FCC has too broad a category of information that requires opt-in consent to share with third parties for marketing and other purposes and that such an approach threatens the economic model of free Web content, and creates an unlevel playing field given that edge providers do not have an opt-in requirement for their collection and sharing of Web browser or app use info.

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