Success! Petition to make unlocking phones legal meets goal

Success! Petition to make unlocking phones legal meets goal
With a little over two days to spare, the voice of the people reaches its goal. We have been telling you about a petition started that would force the government to take a look at the law making unlocking carrier-locked phones illegal, and early this morning the petition reached the 100,000 signature mark, which means the White House must respond.

When we reminded you last night all about the petition (and shared the link in a few phone-related Google+ communities), it still needed just under 11,000 signatures to reach its goal, and now that goal has been met. This is especially impressive because this petition was one of the first to be launched after the White House raised the required number of signatures on a petition from 25,000 to 100,000 in an effort to avoid another petition like the one asking the government to build a Death Star.

Now that the petition has reached its goal, the White House is required to respond, although we don't know when exactly that will happen. This is the first step in the process, but now that we've gotten the attention of the government, it's time to push harder. That means contacting your local congressmen and senators, and urge them to change the law that makes unlocking a phone that you legally purchased from a carrier illegal. 

Thanks to everyone who signed, and shared the petition!

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58 Comments

1. pankajgupta

Posts: 59; Member since: Aug 09, 2012

Cheers to Freedom Movement..!! :)

44. jsdechavez

Posts: 783; Member since: Jul 20, 2012

Petition succeeded in the signatures. Now, to succeed in its goal..

2. Nathan_ingx

Posts: 4766; Member since: Mar 07, 2012

I think we can do much better than 100,00!!

47. tusshharish

Posts: 342; Member since: Oct 23, 2012

they should have taken internet pole ..................in that we may set the record of this

3. tedkord

Posts: 17047; Member since: Jun 17, 2009

Hot damn. Don't stop pushing it - let's get as many as possible. It's time the carriers and OEMs learned that they don't own the equipment after we buy it. We also need to get the restrictions on tablets removed.

10. 14545

Posts: 1835; Member since: Nov 22, 2011

This is my problem. Unless they carriers are forced to give the equipment away for free, then I don't understand this logic of they "own" the software. They don't own anything. Not to mention, good luck going in and buying an unsubsidized device and getting them to unlock it. They owe you nothing at that point, so they won't do crap for you. It should be illegal to LOCK phones, and other electronic devices. If the carriers don't like it, let them stop selling subsidized devices.

15. MichaelHeller

Posts: 2734; Member since: May 26, 2011

The law says they don't own the software, which is why it is legal to jailbreak/root your device. But, it seems that the theory is that most carrier-locked hardware is purchased on subsidy, so you don't technically own it until you finish paying off the subsidy. Of course, according to the law, you still can't unlock that device even after you finish the subsidy, which is absurd, and why we needed this petition.

23. 14545

Posts: 1835; Member since: Nov 22, 2011

Personally, I just wish for a speedy death to the subsidization model. I really see no benefit for it at this point. I mean honestly, if you can't afford a couple hundred for a used smartphone, then you probably don't even need one. As you more than likely can't pay the bill for it either.

35. Mxyzptlk unregistered

I could reasonably argue that you own the device once the subsidy is paid off or if you bought it off contract brand new at full retail price. If you're still in contract and switch phones, then you don't own it technically because you haven't fulfilled your obligation of the contract. This will only apply to GSM devices mostly since GSM is standard worldwide.

37. JC557

Posts: 1914; Member since: Dec 07, 2011

You basically bought a phone but agreed to a contract as well but you still own the phone. You can either break the contract and pay a hefty ETF or ride out the contract which more than covers the price of the phone. In some countries it's actually illegal to lock the phone. This I can agree with.

4. Mxyzptlk unregistered

I honestly think people are overreacting on this one.

6. darkdroid

Posts: 44; Member since: Sep 13, 2012

Mxyzptlk-trolling people since phonearena .

26. Aeires unregistered

Phonearena, filling Mxyptlk's need for attention on a regular basis. If people didn't reply to his comments, he'd stop commenting.

41. Mxyzptlk unregistered

Yet you responded? I'm not forcing you to read my comments.

42. rusticguy

Posts: 2828; Member since: Aug 11, 2012

A BOT that is fed by Apple :)

51. Mxyzptlk unregistered

I'm a terminator ;)

53. PhoneArenaUser

Posts: 5498; Member since: Aug 05, 2011

You are Trollinator. ;)

11. jsdechavez

Posts: 783; Member since: Jul 20, 2012

Agree with Mxyptik. In many countries, people don't really bother as long as their subscribed to their favored networks. Why do you still need to have an unlocked one when you can get another phone probably for free in the other network if you really need to use the other network..?

16. MichaelHeller

Posts: 2734; Member since: May 26, 2011

The issue comes in 3 parts: 1) Americans hate being told that they can't do something with a product that they have paid for and own. 2) Americans like fighting for freedom, even if it's the freedom to take your old device to a new carrier. 3) If you can't unlock your device, you can't simply swap the SIM card when traveling, and are forced to use your carrier's absurdly expensive international plans.

25. PhoneArenaUser

Posts: 5498; Member since: Aug 05, 2011

Part 4) What if you wat to sell or give away your phone for someone else who is on the different network.

46. jsdechavez

Posts: 783; Member since: Jul 20, 2012

We can do nothing about them Americans.. haha but on 2) yes, I think one has the right to switch carriers with an off-contract device provided the carrier has to agree to unlock phones on expired contracts; 3) That can be requested from the network before you travel. Weird but my network has cheaper rates for unlimited data when you're on roaming (outside your country).

58. Gdrye

Posts: 111; Member since: Jan 02, 2012

this comment is the only one that makes any sense, as an At&t employee, unlocking phones does happen when you finish the contract ont he device, or if you pay the full price for the device, i REALLY dont get the guys who buys an iphone for $199 and expect to get it unlocked, what about the $450 that the carrier paid for? The only bad thing about it is that we do run the serial number and if that phone was stolen, lost, or someone got the phone subsidized and never paid the bill, they wont unlock the device.

18. greathero1

Posts: 584; Member since: Jun 13, 2008

Well, if I wanted a Samsung Galaxy Ace or a Huawai Ascend then you probably have a point but when that is not the case, why should it be against the law to unlock what I already have and have paid for outright or through satisfying the TOC of the contract?

24. MartyK

Posts: 1043; Member since: Apr 11, 2012

Why do you still need to have an unlocked one when you can get another phone probably for free in the other network if you really need to use the other network..? A. No Network Carrier is going to give me a free or anyone else a free Galaxy Note-2 or any other top of the line phone. In many countries, people don't really bother as long as their subscribed to their favored networks. A. So if you buy a car or a refrigerator, can they tell you what type of gas to use or what type of foods to put in your items?, we do put a " Down payment" $200 and up on these phones and if we want them unlock, unlock them!.

28. SuperNexus

Posts: 127; Member since: Jan 18, 2013

People like you( i$heep or iFan) . Never understand freedom. Because you are slave of Apple.

34. Mxyzptlk unregistered

Apple doesn't have a gun pointed to my head forcing me to use their products.

45. XPERIA-KNIGHT unregistered

mxyz what platform would you use if apple didnt exist? now i know thats a hard one for ya because a world without apple is unimaginable right? but seriously what platform would you use?

50. Mxyzptlk unregistered

Android or Windows Phone 8

57. iami67

Posts: 330; Member since: Oct 18, 2011

Technically no they dont have a gun to your head your right but he is talking about how apple brainwashes its customers which is why they have no freedon which is just as hold a gun to your head threw brainwashing.

5. aokde

Posts: 186; Member since: Jul 09, 2012

why not make a petition to lower the votes needed for a petition :D?

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