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Momentum builds for devoting D-block to public safety

May 20, 2011 FROM NEXTGOV arrow Efforts to harness a coveted chunk of spectrum known as the D-block for a planned nationwide emergency-communications network received a major boost on Thursday with the introduction of legislation cosponsored by Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee Chairman Joe Lieberman, I-Conn., and panel member John McCain, R-Ariz. The bill,...

Rockefeller sets May 25 vote on public safety network

May 16, 2011 FROM NEXTGOV arrow Senate Commerce Committee Chairman Jay Rockefeller, D-W.Va., plans to announce a May 25 vote on legislation that would pave the way for a nationwide emergency communications network using a controversial slice of airwaves known as the D-block, government and public safety sources said. The network, to be used by first...

Justice Department approves Google's ITA deal

April 8, 2011 FROM NEXTGOV arrow The Justice Department said on Friday it has approved Google's $700 million acquisition of ITA, an online travel company specializing in airline ticketing software, with several conditions. In a settlement designed to address competitive concerns, Justice required Google to develop and license travel software to other companies under "commercially reasonable...

Issa probes FCC's close ties to White House

March 25, 2011 House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Rep. Darrell Issa, R-Calif., wants to know if the White House is pulling the strings at the Federal Communications Commission, a supposedly independent agency. In a March 24 letter to FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski, Issa demands the details about frequent visits by agency...

Privacy issues tarnish Google's Washington image

March 14, 2011 FROM NEXTGOV arrow Reps. Edward Markey, D-Mass., and Joe Barton, R-Texas, cochairmen of the Bipartisan Privacy Caucus and longtime members of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, don't agree on much. But after Google was caught last month collecting Social Security information from children who took part in its annual doodling contest, the...

TechAmerica warns of shutdown consequences

March 2, 2011 FROM NEXTGOV arrow A shutdown of the federal government would have adverse consequences for hundreds of companies that contract with the U.S. government and more than 7.6 million federal contract employees, Phil Bond, president and CEO of TechAmerica, warned Democratic and Republican leaders in both chambers in a Tuesday letter. While he applauded...

China tops list for online, offline piracy

March 1, 2011 FROM NEXTGOV arrow U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk released a report Monday reaffirming China's role as the world's leading source of counterfeit goods - both online and offline. The "Notorious Markets" report cites four websites and dozens of shopping areas on the mainland and in Hong Kong as hubs of pirated products. But...

Obama's technology proposals will be tough to implement

January 26, 2011 FROM NEXTGOV arrow In his State of the Union address, President Obama offered technology companies something they say they desperately need to stay competitive in a global economy: a substantial and potentially historic increase in federal funding for research and development. But with no details about how this goal would be achieved, or...

FCC approves network neutrality regulations

December 21, 2010 FROM NEXTGOV arrow The Federal Communications Commission approved sweeping new regulations on Tuesday prohibiting anticompetitive behavior on the Internet, but the political battle sparked by network neutrality is far from over. The rules were adopted on a 3-2 partisan vote, with the agency's three Democrats backing passage and the two Republican commissioners strongly...

Democratic FCC regulators throw support behind net neutrality rules

December 20, 2010 FROM NEXTGOV arrow It's official: the path has been cleared for Tuesday's historic vote at the Federal Communications Commission approving sweeping new "network neutrality" rules designed to ensure that the Internet remains an open platform that doesn't favor dominant telecommunications and cable companies. Democratic FCC regulator Michael Copps just issued a statement in...

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