California net neutrality bill, SB 460, watered down by assembly committee

28 August 2018 by Steve Blum
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The changes made Monday to senate bill 460 were posted earlier today. Instead of requiring all state and local agencies to buy broadband services from companies that abide by network neutrality rules, it now only applies to contracts of $100,000 or more, and contains generous exceptions to that restriction. The amendments were approved by the assembly’s appropriations committee, which often acts as a proxy for assembly leadership – democratic and republican – but were suggested last week in a staff analysis prepared for the assembly privacy and consumer protection committee.… More

Charter, Comcast tell FTC to kill California broadband laws

28 August 2018 by Steve Blum
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Comcast and Charter Communications want the Federal Trade Commission to preempt California’s data privacy law, and any other state laws regarding broadband service. In comments filed last week, the National Cable and Telecommunications Association (NCTA), which serves as a Washington, D.C. lobbying front for Comcast, Charter and other cable companies, ask the FTC to tell state lawmakers and officials that they can’t enforce broadband service rules beyond what federal regulators think is appropriate (h/t to Jon Brodkin at Ars Technica for the pointer)…

The FTC should ensure that the Internet is subject to uniform, consistent federal regulations, including by issuing guidance explicitly setting forth that inconsistent state and local requirements are preempted…

California’s recently enacted California Consumer Privacy Act of 2018 imposes numerous requirements that differ from, and even conflict with, federal law.174 Moreover, a patchwork of state-level rules applying only to BIAS providers would undercut existing federal policy basing enforcement on what information is collected and how it is used, rather than on who is collecting the information.


One of two net neutrality bills move ahead in California assembly, with unknown changes

28 August 2018 by Steve Blum
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Senate bill 460 was approved yesterday by the assembly appropriations committee, on a party line vote. The legislature’s online information systems says it was passed “as amended”, which means the committee made some changes. The new version of the bill hasn’t been posted yet, and there’s no online video replay – I wasn’t able to listen in yesterday.

SB 460, which requires state and local agencies to only buy Internet service from companies that abide by net neutrality rules, is a companion bill to SB 822, which would establish those regulations and apply them across the board in California.… More

California net neutrality bills hit the final stretch

27 August 2018 by Steve Blum
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It’s five days and counting, to the end of the California legislature’s 2018 session. There are hundreds of bills still under consideration. Not all of them will pass, of course. Some will be voted down, but even more will die a quiet death, for lack of a vote.

Senate bill 822 is not likely to go away quietly. It’s the high profile bill, by senator Scott Wiener (D – San Francisco), that would establish stringent network neutrality rules in California.… More

Net neutrality revival heads to a California assembly vote

23 August 2018 by Steve Blum
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Two bills aimed at restoring network neutrality in California made it through a previous legislative road block yesterday. The California assembly’s communications and conveyances committee approved senate bills 822 and 460 on party line votes, with all net neutrality rules intact.

Most of the discussion yesterday was about zero rating and interconnection agreements. Lobbyists for AT&T, mobile carriers and Comcast’s and Charter Communications’ front organisation led the opposition to the bills. They didn’t like any of it, but they particularly objected to a ban on deals between ISPs and web companies that do an end run around net neutrality rules, and to restrictions on zero rating.… More

California assembly committee gets a net neutrality do over today

22 August 2018 by Steve Blum
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California’s network neutrality revival is queued up for a key committee hearing this afternoon, with another one scheduled for tomorrow. Senate bills 822 and 460 are on the agenda – the only items on the agenda – of the California assembly’s communications and conveyances committee at 1:30 p.m.

That’s the same committee that gutted SB 822 in June. Its chairman, assemblyman Miguel Santiago (D – Los Angeles), had a change of heart after withering attacks from the online community and appeals – aka a stern talking to – from state and national democratic party leaders.… More

Where in the world is Miguel Santiago?

14 August 2018 by Steve Blum
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The legislative clock is ticking down in Sacramento, and there’s been no action on either senate bill 822 or 460. Those are the Siamese twin bills that would restore network neutrality rules in California.

Both are sitting in the assembly’s communications and conveyances committee. The chair, assemblyman Miguel Santiago (D – Los Angeles), hasn’t scheduled a meeting and his staff hasn’t prepared the obligatory analysis yet, despite a Friday deadline for committee action.

Both bills were trashed in Santiago’s committee in June.… More

California net neutrality bills back on track

8 August 2018 by Steve Blum
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The new versions of senate bills 822 and 460 were filed in Sacramento yesterday, and appear to once again be a legitimate revival of network neutrality, as promised last month.

SB 822, authored by senator Scott Weiner (D – San Francisco), is the big kahuna. The bill reinstates the three bright line rules first adopted by the Federal Communications Commission in 2015, when it had a democratic majority, and then repealed in 2017 after republicans took control: no blocking, throttling or paid prioritisation.… More

California’s net neutrality amigos ride into action tomorrow

5 August 2018 by Steve Blum
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The California legislature is back in session tomorrow, following a month long summer break. The fires ravaging California will certainly be top of mind for everyone, but broadband bills remain on the table. Network neutrality is the big issue, and activists are certain to keep the pressure on to pass effective legislation.

Senate bills 822 and 460 are paired up, and together will reinstate the 2015 Obama era net neutrality rules scrapped late last year by the Trump administration’s republican majority on the Federal Communications Commission.… More