Tagged: California Toggle Comment Threads | Keyboard Shortcuts

  • Geebo 9:15 am on October 8, 2018 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , California, ,   

    Can the FCC really stop states from enacting Net Neutrality? 

    Can the FCC really stop states from enacting Net Neutrality?

    If you’ll recall, when the FCC under the Obama Administration enacted net neutrality legislation, the FCC ruled that internet providers were to be considered as Title II carriers. What that meant was that the internet was to be treated as a utility much like electricity or water. This also meant that internet service could not be throttled in any way. I mean, you don’t see the power companies giving fast service to your microwave while throttling service to your clothes dryer. That was until earlier this year when the Aji Pai led FCC overturned the Title II designation with the ironically named Restoring Internet Freedom Order.

    Since then, the state of California enacted their own net neutrality legislation in defiance of the FCC’s edict that no state could enact their own net neutrality laws. This resulted in lawsuits being filed against the state of California by both the DOJ and a consortium of groups representing the big internet providers like Comcast and Verizon. However, now it’s being argued whether or not the FCC has the authority to forbid states from enacting net neutrality regulations. According to WIRED, since the FCC has said that it doesn’t have the authority to regulate the internet, it may not have the authority to regulate it within the states either. Yet, FCC Chairman Ajit Pai continues to mislead the public about net neutrality.

    In the preceding video, Pai claims that there have been no violations of net neutrality and that when the Obama administration regulated it, that any regulation dealt only in hypotheticals. That flies in the face of reality where companies like Comcast and AT&T would treat internet traffic in such a way that they would favor services they provided. In one example AT&T made a move to block Skype and VOIP calls over their service in order to get more people to use their voice service.

    Now the FCC wants to have their cake and eat it too by not only abandoning net neutrality but trying to make the states not enforce it as well. With movies like this, it seems obvious that the FCC only really cares about big business and not the American public.

     
  • Geebo 9:00 am on October 4, 2018 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: California, ,   

    Internet providers file their own suit against California Net Neutrality 

    Internet providers file their own suit against California Net Neutrality

    If you were looking for a sign that the state of California was trying to protect consumers with its new net neutrality legislation, look no further. Four broadband industry groups that represent companies like AT&T, Verizon, Charter, Comcast, and T-Mobile, have joined with the DOJ in suing California. Much like the DOJ, the internet providers are arguing that California is violating federal mandates by imposing their own regulations against providers that perform interstate services.

    Once again, FCC Chairman Ajit Pai tries to spin the FCC’s repeal of net neutrality as pro-consumer. Pai issued a statement that read in part

    “The Internet is inherently an interstate information service. As such, only the federal government can set policy in this area,” Pai said. “Not only is California’s Internet regulation law illegal, it also hurts consumers.”

    California Attorney General Xavier Becerra fired back by referring to the industry groups as ‘power brokers’ who have an ‘interest in maintaining their stronghold’. AG Becerra also released a statement of his own regarding the latest suit.

    “California, the country’s economic engine, has the right to exercise its sovereign powers under the Constitution,” he said in a statement, “and we will do everything we can to protect the right of our 40 million consumers to access information by defending a free and open Internet.”

    It has been shown in the past that the FCC has given little input to the American people who were opposed to the repeal of net neutrality protections ever since they announced their intention to do so, going as far as forbidding the states from make their own net neutrality legislation. This has not stopped the states from defying this edict with California being at the forefront of that movement. With the federal government siding with the major internet providers over the protection of consumers doesn’t it fall to the individual states to do what they can to protect their citizens? This is what ‘states’ rights’ is really about.

     
  • Geebo 9:00 am on October 2, 2018 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , California, Jeff Sessions, ,   

    California sued by the Trump administration over new net neutrality laws 

    California sued over new net neutrality laws by the Trump administration

    California Gov. Jerry Brown

    This past Sunday, California Governor Jerry Brown signed what’s being called the strictest net neutrality laws in the country for his state. Not surprisingly, the Trump Administration has a problem with this because when the FCC repealed net neutrality regulations earlier this year, they unilaterally proclaimed that states could not enact their own net neutrality legislation. Almost immediately after Governor Brown signed the legislation into law, the DOJ filed a lawsuit against the state of California.

    FCC Chairman, and former Verizon employee, Ajit Pai told reporters that the repeal of net neutrality will lead to “better, faster, cheaper Internet access and more competition.” Right, because there was so much competition in the internet service market prior to net neutrality being enacted. How many internet service providers are available in any given market? While many larger cities may have a choice between the phone company or the cable company when it comes to getting their internet. Many smaller towns only have one provider and that’s it. That’s because many of the big ISPs have entered into agreements with municipalities making them a virtual regional monopoly. Rates haven’t gotten any cheaper either as the big providers like Comcast, Cox, and Verizon continue to raise their rates.

    Commenting on the lawsuit, Attorney General Jeff Sessions said: “the Justice Department should not have to spend valuable time and resources to file this suit today, but we have a duty to defend the prerogatives of the federal government and protect our Constitutional order.” He’s right but not in the way he thinks he is. The DOJ should not be wasting time and resources in this suit because the majority of Americans are in favor of net neutrality. Not that I think the Federal Government will spend too much money on this suit as it appears like a big portion of the Trump Administration has been bought and paid for by the internet service conglomerates, and they’re not even trying to hide it very well.

     
  • Geebo 10:18 am on February 15, 2018 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , California, , schools   

    California schools to teach human trafficking awareness 

    California schools to teach human trafficking awareness

    While California may be the leading state in the country for human trafficking that doesn’t mean the state is taking it lying down. California is also one of the leaders in the country of human trafficking prosecution. This is the state that is trying to curb human trafficking at one of its roots by prosecuting the CEO and founders of Backpage.

    California is now trying to prevent human trafficking by using one of the greatest weapons known to man, knowledge. Back in October the state legislature passed a law that would require schools to train teachers and educate students on the signs of human trafficking. Let’s not kid ourselves that our children are not being targeted by pimps and traffickers online. With the advent of social media, these predators are using the impressionability of our children with promises of money and independence to lure them into a life of slavery.

    Since many parents are so unwilling to educate their children or are ignorant to the problem themselves that it is up to the schools to warn our children about these dangers. It’s more than high time for the rest of the country to follow California’s lead in this matter since the trafficking of women and children occurs in every state in just about every town.

     
  • Geebo 10:33 am on January 31, 2018 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: California,   

    Another state enacts Net Neutrality legislation 

    Another state enacts Net Neutrality legislation

    In the wake of the state of Montana enacting its own legislation in order to protect net neutrality within its borders, another state has taken similar steps. With all due respect to Montana, this other state’s legislation will probably get internet service providers and the FCC to sit up and take notice.

    Recently, in direct defiance of the FCC’s edict that states couldn’t enforce their own net neutrality legislation. the Golden State of California has passed two bills guaranteeing that all internet traffic will be treated equally in their state.

    California can not just be ignored by ISPs if they’re wanting to do business in the state and this new proposed legislation could start a domino effect where ISPs may have to voluntarily commit to net neutrality just to keep from running afoul of state laws. However, the solution is never that simple and we could see these state laws challenged in federal court for years to come. Hopefully the ISPs will realize that it might be more profitable for them to treat all internet traffic equally then spending money fighting these laws made by various states.

     
  • Geebo 10:26 am on January 9, 2018 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , California, ,   

    States taking up the fight for Net Neutrality 

    States taking up the fight for Net Neutrality

    When the FCC, along with Chairman Ajit Pai, repealed the Net Neutrality protections they also claimed the authority to prevent the states from creating and enforcing their own Net Neutrality legislation. This seems to fly in the face of the current administration’s supposed support of states’ rights. However, this hasn’t stopped some of the states from introducing their own legislation despite the FCC’s proclamation.

    Two states that you wouldn’t normally mention in the same sentence, California and Nebraska, have both introduced legislation intended to keep paid prioritized internet traffic, throttling and blockages out of their states. If these state laws were to pass, it would make it difficult for ISPs operating in multiple states to have separate networks for each state and may make them abide by Net Neutrality in each state.

    If the federal government really wanted to make an example of any state that enforced their own Net Neutrality laws, they technically could pull federal funding from any of the states. A state like California could more than likely weather that storm, but a state like Nebraska could be hurt significantly. The question is, does the current administration really want the PR nightmare that would come with cutting off state funding over Net Neutrality?

     
  • Geebo 8:56 am on August 24, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , California, , , ,   

    Court gives go ahead to prosecute Backpage heads 

    Court gives go ahead to prosecute Backpage heads

    Backpage CEO Carl Ferrer

    For the better part of a year, the state of California has been trying to prosecute the CEO and founders of Backpage on prostitution and money laundering charges. Attorneys for Backpage CEO Carl Ferrer and Backpage founders Michael Lacey and Jim Larkin have repeatedly claimed the three men are protected by the First Amendment. After their first arrest, the three men did have pimping charges against them dismissed, however, the state came back and charged them with money laundering in addition to pimping.

    After their second arrest, the Senate Subcommittee on Investigations would gather evidence the committee says shows Backpage knowingly edited their ads to hide any references to underage girls being advertised on their site for sex. Another crushing blow to Backpage was when the Washington Post uncovered documentation which claimed Backpage was copying and soliciting ads for their adult sections. Backpage’s facade of free speech was now crumbling.

    Yesterday, the Sacramento County Superior Court overruled defense dismissal motions, meaning prosecution against Ferrer, Larkin and Lacy can proceed. The trio is looking at 25 counts each of money laundering and conspiracy to use Backpage to profit from sex trafficking. California Attorney General Xavier Becerra has promised to prosecute this case vigorously.

    “Today’s victory doesn’t exact justice just yet against those who would prey on vulnerable young women and men. But it brings us a step closer.”

    If it can be proven Backpage knowingly edited their ads to allow underage girls to be trafficked on their site, it negates their protection under the Communications Decency Act. The CDA states that websites aren’t responsible for the content posted by users, however, if the Backpage was editing the ads, that makes Backpage the content creators themselves, which not only opens them up for further prosecution but lawsuits from their victims as well.

    Hopefully, this ruling by the Sacramento County Superior Court is a sign of things to come where the victim’s of Backpage sex trafficking can finally receive the justice they deserve.

     
  • Geebo 11:01 am on January 3, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: California, , ,   

    California seriously cracks down on cell phones in cars 

    California seriously cracks down on cell phones in cars

    We’re all guilty of it. We’ve all used our cell phones while driving. Whether it’s quickly checking a text message or changing a song, we’ve all taken our eyes off the road for just a second to fiddle with our phones. While we think we can handle it, it really is extremely dangerous to do so. California believes so too, and believes it so much they have instituted some of the toughest laws against driving and using your phone.

    While California has only allowed hands free calling for years, as of January 1st of 2017 California has made it illegal to use your phone while driving unless it’s in a cradle on your dashboard. Part of the law even states that the cradle can’t be on the center of the windshield. Not only that, but the law states that you can only use one finger to swipe anything on your phone while it’s in the cradle. Whether or not this will actually decrease incidents involving distracted driving remains to be seen. For example, can the law requiring only one finger swipes be enforced in reality? Will the fines, running from $20 to $50 be enough to discourage this kind of behavior? Or is this just a cash grab by the always financially addled Golden State?

    California is one of the most visited states by tourists. How many of them will be aware of the new law when they go to visit California? How many of them will be stopped by the California Highway Patrol for having their cell phones in their hands? While California has always had the toughest cell phone laws in the country, these new laws seem to be on par with the red light cameras that plague our cities, meaning that they generate more money for governments than they prevent actual accidents.

     
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