Verizon and MetroPCS appeal ruling on FCC’s mobile broadband regulations

Verizon and MetroPCS appeal ruling on FCC’s mobile broadband regulations
In December 2011, the FCC mandated that carriers may not control applications and services that run on their networks. That decision forced Verizon to stop blocking tething apps and the regulatory body also fined Verizon $1.25 million in the process.

Joining Verizon in its appeal is MetroPCS. Both carriers argue that the FCC is overreaching with this policy and exceeding its mandate. In addition, the carriers argue that the rules generated by these policy are “arbitrary and capricious,” and violate the Telecommunications Act of 1996. On top of all that, Verizon and MetroPCS also claim the policy is a violation of the carriers’ First Amendment rights, stating that the networks these companies own are the same as a microphone or Speakers Corner to engage in free speech.

The rules as they stand now, prevent network carriers from selectively controlling applications and services that require wireless or wireline broadband connections. It will be interesting to see how the arguments play out, there are a number of players that are listed as “intervenors” in support of the FCC policy, namely CTIA-The Wireless Association, the Open Internet Coalition and Vonage Holdings.

What follows in the filing is over 100 pages of briefs and citations of other cases which purportedly make the case for Verizon and MetroPCS. That will set the tone for the hearing which has not been scheduled.

sources: FCC via Phone Scoop



1. MorePhonesThanNeeded

Posts: 645; Member since: Oct 23, 2011

Oh hell no!! A publicly traded company wants to force you to use apps on services you paid for only access to? Stop the insanity, I only paid to have a phone connection and internet, what I do with it is none of your damn business. They have the nerve to say the FCC ruling is overreaching, their business practices are attempting the same thing. Great thing to have the FCC around, some of the time, save us from these big money jerks.

8. AWiseGuy

Posts: 68; Member since: Oct 30, 2012

I've long thought the same thing. Carriers provide phone service, right? What right then gives THEM the right to control my usage of apps and how I manage my data? I'm buying the data plan from them, not the Play Store. Same applies, of course, to the stupid branding they put all over phones. WHY? Because I'm going to forget I'm with Verizon? They should have no right at all to do any of this. It's just fucking annoying.

2. TheMan

Posts: 494; Member since: Sep 21, 2012

Interesting that claim that not allowing VZW to restrict access violates its First Amendment protection. What a load of BS.

3. dragonscourgex

Posts: 307; Member since: Jan 16, 2012

I think the FCC is right in their decision. Giving Verizon their way in this would just lead to higher bills for the average person.

4. blahb

Posts: 48; Member since: May 16, 2012

Corporations or people my friend? I think I'll stick with people who can use their phones they way they were intended, not the way a corporation says I have to use it so they can pad their pockets and appease wall-street.

5. Bert1

Posts: 4; Member since: Nov 22, 2011

Verizon was forced to pay $1.25 million penalty (which is pennies to them ) to the FCC back in July of this year because they were illegally charging customers for the right to tether. A few years ago when Verizon was bidding at auction to acquire spectrum, they specifically agreed with the rules and stipulations placed by the government. And I quote a piece from BGR: "Specifically, licensees offering service on C Block spectrum “shall not deny, limit, or restrict the ability of their customers to use the devices and applications of their choice on the licensee’s C Block network,” subject to narrow exceptions. The open device and application obligations were core conditions when Verizon purchased the C-block spectrum." They agreed to the rules and now they suddenly want to screw their customer base.

6. corporateJP

Posts: 2458; Member since: Nov 28, 2009

^ This right here closes any loophole the carriers want to use to take customers for more than they already do. I hope this license agreement gets shoved in their faces.

7. downphoenix

Posts: 3165; Member since: Jun 19, 2010

The Supreme Court is to blame here. They made the precedent that Corporations are eligible for the same rights as individuals. So basically, Verizon and MetroPCS are right here unless the Supreme Court's ruling is overturned, which it should be. Of course, it is up to us as consumers to keep controls on greedy companies like them by not using or buying their products and services. If Verizon gets its way, I hope those of you here who use Verizon have the guts to pull out. Because if you dont, you are voting with your wallet and saying you are okay with them doing this, at least okay enough to continue paying them.

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