Karl Bode writes about corporations talking about the “race to 5G”, saying that it’s more like a race to bigger profits.
The “race” rhetoric is largely an illusion created by companies eager to do the bare minimum in exchange for as many subsidies, regulatory favors and tax breaks they can grab. This mindless regulatory capture has resulted in a US Telecom sector that routinely ranks in the middle of the pack in every metric that matters. While 5G will be a good thing when deployed at scale, it’s foolish to think the new wireless technical standard will address the deeper rot that plagues the sector.
Lisa Ellman is a specialist in drone and aviation law and Apple just hired her as a lobbyist in Washington.
A leak shows that Comcast is lobbying against plans to encrypt web traffic that would make it harder to collect your browsing history.
Hotel lobbyists don’t like Airbnb and its competition, so they’re introducing a bill to amend Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act.
And they’re not just focused on pushing this loophole for Airbnb. It appears they’re going all in on stripping Section 230 protections from any internet service hosting 3rd party content. As part of this, they recently released what can only be described as a push poll to mislead people about Airbnb, the laws around these issues, and Section 230. Each question in the poll is at best actively misleading and at worst, completely bullshit.
John Martellaro and Andrew Orr join host Kelly Guimont to discuss the new macOS read-only volume and ISP budgets for lobbying lawmakers.
Paul Bischoff gives us a breakdown of the top 25 lobbying spenders in 2018, and how much they spent.
2018 was the biggest year yet for ISP lobbying at $80 million. Top spenders include AT&T, Verizon, and Comcast, which have amassed lobbying expenses of $341 million, $265 million, and $200 million, respectively since 1998.
Apple lobbyists have pulled a self-repair bill that warned customers attempting to repair their own devices could hurt themselves.
Between 2005 and 2018 Apple spent US$60 million lobbying Congress. Here’s how the company spends that money.
Silicon Valley lobbying groups are trying to gut the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA).
The California Consumer Privacy Act, or CCPA, gives residents of California the ability to request the data that businesses collect on them, demand that it be deleted, and opt out of having that data sold to third parties, among other things. But last week, the California Assembly’s Committee on Privacy and Consumer Protection advanced a series of bills that would either amend CCPA or carve out exemptions for certain categories of businesses.
I have a couple of opinions here. I think groups affected by a certain bill or law should have the right to voice their opinion. On the other hand I feel uneasy by corporate lobbying focused on donating or influencing political campaigns where there is a conflict of interest.
Tech firms spent a record amount lobbying the U.S. Government in 2018. Re/Code reported that Apple spent $6.6 million, slightly down from $7.2 million the year before. Although significant, Apple’s outlay was lower than that of the other major tech firms. For example, Google spent $21 million, while Amazon spent $14.2 million, and Facebook spent $12.6 million. Microsoft too outspent Apple, spending $9.5 million. In total, the firms invested $48 million in lobbying in 2018, up 13% from the year before.
Lobbying growth among the tech giants — especially companies that leverage user data for advertising revenue — comes as they are falling under increased government scrutiny. Facebook in particular faces a record Federal Trade Commission fine over apparent violations of data privacy practices in the Cambridge Analytica scandal that was revealed last year.