International Institute of Communications

Shaping the policy agenda: TELECOMMUNICATIONS • MEDIA • TECHNOLOGY
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News from 2018

Europe data protection head has strong words for platform players over GDPR

The European Data Protection Supervisor, Giovanni Buttarelli, has set an agenda to tackle the “unbalanced ecosystem” being created in the digital economy. In a blog post, he has strong words for the big platform players: “The digital information ecosystem farms people for their attention, ideas and data in exchange for so called ‘free’ services.

  • Monday, 21 May 2018

Are Australian consumers paying for Google’s data collection? Are Australian consumers paying for Google’s data collection?

Google is under investigation by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) and the country’s Privacy Commissioner following claims that it collects data from millions of Android smartphone users, who unwittingly pay their telecoms service providers for gigabytes consumed by the activity, reports Reuters.

  • Monday, 21 May 2018

Zimbabwe merges broadcasting and telecoms regulators Zimbabwe merges broadcasting and telecoms regulators

Zimbabwe’s cabinet has approved a proposal to merge the Broadcasting Authority of Zimbabwe (Baz) and the Postal and Telecommunications Regulatory Authority of Zimbabwe (Potraz) in a development meant to foster technological convergence, reports the Chronicle.

  • Monday, 21 May 2018

New telecoms law in Democratic Republic of Congo New telecoms law in Democratic Republic of Congo

The Democratic Republic of Congo’s (DRC’s) National Assembly has adopted a new Telecommunications Act to update the nation’s aging legal framework for the sector, bring the rules in line with the country’s needs and to align with other relevant legislation, notes TeleGeography.

  • Monday, 21 May 2018

FCC aims to reform educational band spectrum

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has adopted a notice of proposed rulemaking to update the framework for licensing educational broadband service (EBS) spectrum in the 2.5 GHz band.

  • Monday, 21 May 2018

US Senate sends warning shot over net neutrality repeal US Senate sends warning shot over net neutrality repeal

The US Senate has voted 52-47 to disapprove the FCC’s recent order replacing 2015’s net neutrality rules, “a pleasant surprise for internet advocates and consumers throughout the country”, reports TechCrunch.

  • Monday, 21 May 2018

FCC approves satellite broadband launch FCC approves satellite broadband launch

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has approved a plan by Elon Musk’s SpaceX to build a global broadband network using satellites, reports Reuters.

  • Thursday, 26 April 2018

Civil society plea for cybercrime negotiations

On 3 April 2018, the Association for Progressive Communications (APC), along with 93 civil society organisations from across the globe, sent a letter to the Secretary General of the Council of Europe, Thorbjørn Jagland, requesting transparency and meaningful civil society participation in the Council of Europe’s negotiations of the draft Second Additional Protocol to the Convention on Cybercrime...

  • Thursday, 26 April 2018

UK lawmakers start internet regulation inquiry

The UK House of Lords Communications Committee has invited contributions to an inquiry on the regulation of the internet, under which the Committee will explore how the regulation of the internet should be improved, and whether specific regulation is required or whether the existing law is adequate.

  • Thursday, 26 April 2018

European working party takes on social media

Working Party 29 (WP29), the group that unites European data protection authorities, has announced “its full support” for investigations by national privacy authorities into the collection and use of personal data by and through social media.

  • Thursday, 26 April 2018

Cross-border data flows examined in Asian study

A paper published by Brookings looks at the importance of cross-border data flows, taking Asia as a model, and why they need regulating to stimulate the digital economy.

  • Thursday, 26 April 2018

Europe makes triple play on artificial intelligence  Europe makes triple play on artificial intelligence

The European Commission is proposing “a three-pronged approach to increase public and private investment in artificial intelligence (AI), prepare for socioeconomic changes, and ensure an appropriate ethical and legal framework.”

  • Thursday, 26 April 2018

UK’s lays out universal service law UK’s lays out universal service law

The design of the UK's new universal service obligation (USO) for broadband has been specified in law, reports Out-Law.com. The UK government said the new USO would “ensure high speed broadband access for the whole of the UK by 2020”.

  • Thursday, 26 April 2018

UAE releases media activity regulations

The National Media Council (NMC), the federal authority tasked with supervising all media activities in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), has recently issued electronic media activity regulations, notes law firm Clyde&Co.

  • Thursday, 26 April 2018

GSMA weighs in on Colombia’s regulatory regime GSMA weighs in on Colombia’s regulatory regime

The GSMA has put forward a series of regulatory and public policy proposals to boost Colombia’s digital economy ahead of next month’s presidential elections, reports Telecompaper.

  • Thursday, 26 April 2018

Togo aims to build internet access Togo aims to build internet access

The government of Togo, in an effort to ensure the provision of universal electronic communications services in the country, has adopted a draft decree that defines the rules applying to such services, notes TeleGeography.

  • Thursday, 26 April 2018

APAC Bytes April 2018 APAC Bytes April 2018

Industry and regulatory news from the Asia Pacfic region compiled by TRPC.

  • Thursday, 19 April 2018

Inquiry into internet competition wraps up

The Innovation, Industry, Science and Resources Committee has completed its report for the Inquiry into impacts on local businesses in Australia from global internet-based competition.

  • Wednesday, 18 April 2018

ACMA Chair addresses CommsDay 2018 Summit

O’Loughlin addressed current and future challenges and opportunities in the industry, how the ACMA is progressing with implementing reforms agreed by the government,...

  • Wednesday, 18 April 2018

Gambling ad crackdown during primetime sport

Gambling advertisements will be banned during the broadcast of live sports between 5am and 8:30pm on commercial free-to-air TV, radio and pay TV, ACMA has announced.

  • Thursday, 22 March 2018

Finland’s regulator imposes price caps to boost broadband competition

High wholesale prices impede competition in the broadband market, so the Finnish Communications Regulatory Authority (FICORA) is imposing price caps on fibre local loops provided by the three market leaders in Finland, and regulation on copper local loops will be scaled down.

  • Thursday, 22 March 2018

International tax system changes could target tech giants

The OECD says more than 110 countries and jurisdictions have agreed to review two key concepts of the international tax system, responding to a mandate from the G20 finance ministers to work on the implications of digitisation for taxation.

  • Thursday, 22 March 2018

Dutch agency notes vulnerability of digitisation of the power supply

The digitisation of the power supply will make it vulnerable due to the increasing risk of error in the software, and not only as a result of cyberattacks, reports Telecom Paper, noting a report by the Dutch Council for the Environment and Infrastructure (Rli).

  • Thursday, 22 March 2018

Dutch competition authority takes note of telecoms regulation

Approval by the ACM (Dutch competition authority) of KPN’s acquisition of fibre operator Reggefiber was upheld by the Dutch Trade and Industry Appeals Tribunal in February 2018 – and as a commentary in JD Supra says, in assessing the merger’s competitive effects, “the tribunal notably considered regulatory measures adopted pursuant to sector-specific telecoms regulation”.

  • Thursday, 22 March 2018

India relaxes spectrum rules in favour of investment

India has approved relief measures for the telecoms sector, revising limits on spectrum holdings and allowing operators longer to pay for airwaves won at auction, with a view to freeing up funds for investment, improving ease of doing business and allowing for consolidation in the sector, reports TeleGeography.

  • Thursday, 22 March 2018

Q&A Magnus Ewerbring Q&A Magnus Ewerbring

We asked Magnus Ewerbring, CTO of Ericsson in APAC, for his views on the future of 5G, its relevance for consumers and how networks will be ‘sliced’ to support different applications in the future.

  • Thursday, 22 February 2018

somalia goes ahead with first telecoms regulator somalia goes ahead with first telecoms regulator

As expected, Somalia’s government has decided to set up the country’s first regulatory body for the telecoms sector, the National Communications Authority, notes Mobile World Live.

  • Thursday, 22 February 2018

Turkey aims to extend media powers to content providers Turkey aims to extend media powers to content providers

Turkey will expand the powers of its radio and television watchdog to include overseeing online content providers, under a draft law submitted to parliament on which the main opposition party said amounted to digital censorship, reports Reuters.

  • Thursday, 22 February 2018

Dutch agency investigates wireless using light

The Dutch radiocommunications agency, Agentschap Telecom, has published research on the use of “Li-Fi” – light fidelity – which uses light for wireless communication.

  • Thursday, 22 February 2018

GSMA criticises Latin American spectrum policies

The GSMA has issued a report, “Effective spectrum pricing in Latin America: policies to support better quality and more affordable mobile services”, highlighting that spectrum policies in Latin America are impacting the delivery of quality mobile services to consumers across the region.

  • Thursday, 22 February 2018

France’s regulator urges internet freedom in IoT devices France’s regulator urges internet freedom in IoT devices

French communications regulator, Arcep, has urged Europe-wide action to force manufacturers to reverse policies on handsets, tablets and smart speakers perceived to be limiting internet freedom, reports Mobile World Live.

  • Thursday, 22 February 2018

OECD releases latest figures on mobile and broadband trends

Mobile termination rates – the rates operators charge each other to connect calls – dropped by an average of 42% in OECD countries between 2014 and 2017 as a result of increased regulation and competition, according to new data released by the OECD.

  • Thursday, 22 February 2018

Cyril Ramaphosa mentions technology in state of nation address

Cyril Ramaphosa, the new president of South Africa, included the following in his state of the nation address: “Our prosperity as a nation depends on our ability to take full advantage rapid technological change. This means that we urgently need to develop our capabilities in the areas of science, technology and innovation.

  • Thursday, 22 February 2018

Expert report on AI warns of malicious use

Experts on the security implications of emerging technologies have written a report that sounds the alarm about the potential malicious use of artificial intelligence (AI) by rogue states, criminals, and terrorists.

  • Thursday, 22 February 2018

Benin transfers all subscribers of a mobile network Benin transfers all subscribers of a mobile network

Benin’s Authority for Regulation of Electronic Communications and Post (ARCEP) signed a decision on 17 January 2018 reassigning all subscribers of Globacom Benin (Glo Mobile) to the network of Moov Benin, reports TeleGeography.

  • Tuesday, 23 January 2018

Chaos of Mother’s Day sale investigated by Taiwan’s regulator Chaos of Mother’s Day sale investigated by Taiwan’s regulator

Japan Communications says it has received Japan’s first regulatory certification under both the Radio Law and Telecommunications Business Law for an unlicensed LTE (u-LTE) base station – and JCI chairman Frank Seiji Sanda says, “u-LTE is the first step in the obsolescence of legacy mobile operators.”

  • Monday, 21 May 2018

Japan Communications has go-ahead for unlicensed LTE base station

Japan Communications says it has received Japan’s first regulatory certification under both the Radio Law and Telecommunications Business Law for an unlicensed LTE (u-LTE) base station – and JCI chairman Frank Seiji Sanda says, “u-LTE is the first step in the obsolescence of legacy mobile operators.”

  • Monday, 21 May 2018

IIC Italy - AGM and proposed activities for 2018 IIC Italy - AGM and proposed activities for 2018

On May  9th 2018,  the members of the IIC - Italian Chapter held their annual general meeting at the Agcom venue at the presence of the President Augusto Preta, commissioner Antonio Nicita, Agcom chapter representative, and other members of the chapter.

  • Monday, 21 May 2018

TRCP Highlights May 2018 TRCP Highlights May 2018

Industry and regulatory highlights from the Asia Pacfic region compiled by TRPC.

  • Monday, 21 May 2018

US agencies band together for radar consolidation

Four agencies looking to band together to create a combined radar system want more information from commercial spectrum users and the public on their plan for the project, notes FWC.

  • Thursday, 26 April 2018

Ecuador: a cautionary tale for media regulators

An article by Anya Schiffrin in Policy Syndicate considers that for more than a decade, Ecuadorian journalists have increasingly felt the effects of repressive media and speech laws that were supposedly enacted in the "public interest”.

  • Thursday, 26 April 2018

Australia’s ACCC issues final market report Australia’s ACCC issues final market report

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) has published the final report of its communications sector market study, which includes 28 recommendations and actions on competition and consumer issues.

  • Thursday, 26 April 2018

Challenges for public service media

The Nordic Information Centre for Media and Communication Research (Nordicom) has published Public Service Media in the Networked Society, a collection of papers on the role of public sector media.

  • Thursday, 26 April 2018

States gang up on FCC on net neutrality

California is among the US states that could reintroduce net neutrality following the FCC’s overturning of the Open Internet Order.

  • Thursday, 26 April 2018

Commission goes after Apple’s proposed music buy-up Commission goes after Apple’s proposed music buy-up

The European Commission has launched an investigation to assess Apple’s proposed acquisition of music app Shazam, expressing concerns the deal could reduce choice for users of music streaming services, reports Mobile World Live.

  • Thursday, 26 April 2018

Taiwan’s regulator warns on impact of price war Taiwan’s regulator warns on impact of price war

The telecoms regulator in Taiwan has warned that sparking a price war could impair how much operators are willing to invest in new services and networks, including 5G, reports Telecoms Tech.

  • Thursday, 26 April 2018

5G forecast show Europe ‘further adrift’

CCS Insight, a market researcher, has raised its near-term forecast for global 5G connections following “impressive progress” made by the industry over the past six months.

  • Thursday, 26 April 2018

South Africa consults on ICT ownership South Africa consults on ICT ownership

South Africa’s regulator, ICASA is to hold public hearings to discuss “the review and development of the authority position on historically disadvantaged persons and broad-based black economic empowerment (BBBEE)”, notes ITWeb.

  • Thursday, 26 April 2018

Myanmar starts universal service fund

Myanmar will collect tax on telecoms operators to extend the telecoms network to remote areas of the country, reports the Myanmar Times.

  • Thursday, 26 April 2018

FCC sets out 5G spectrum auction plans

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is seeking comment on proposed application and bidding procedures for the auctions of the 28 GHz and 24 GHz spectrum bands to promote the development of 5G technology, the internet of things, and other advanced spectrum-based services.

  • Thursday, 26 April 2018

The impact of the GDPR The impact of the GDPR

On 25 May the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) comes into force for the 28 member states, but the impact is already far wider as the regulation affects any organisation that keeps data on an EU citizen, which includes all the global internet giants.

  • Thursday, 26 April 2018

The ACCA’s report launch 30 April 2018

Asia Cloud Computing Association (ACCA)’s report launch, Asia’s Financial Services on the Cloud 2018: Regulatory Landscape Impacting the Use of Cloud by Financial Services Institutions in Asia
30th April 2018.

  • Thursday, 19 April 2018

Gambling ad crackdown extends to online streaming services

After partially banning gambling advertisements during the broadcast of live sports on free-to-air and commercial television last month, the ACMA has proposed mirrored restrictions for online streaming services.

  • Wednesday, 18 April 2018

Q&A Ieva Martinkenaite Q&A Ieva Martinkenaite

This month Policy World interviews Ieva Martinkenaite, PhD, Vice President, Telenor Research, Head of Telenor-NTNU AI-Lab / Start IoT

  • Monday, 26 March 2018

Australia seeks to modernise copyright laws

The Australian Government has announced a review of the Australian Copyright Act 1968 following on from the Productivity Commission’s review and report on Australia’s Intellectual Property Arrangements.

  • Thursday, 22 March 2018

Falkland Islands steps up communications regulation

The Falkland Islands, one of the more remote territories, now has a communications regulator in place in Susannah Nightingale, who has published the first regulator's annual report.

  • Thursday, 22 March 2018

Metadata processing under scrutiny in Europe Metadata processing under scrutiny in Europe

An item in the law blog, Out-Law.com, notes that EU law makers are scrutinising the issue of metadata processing in the context of new EU laws on privacy and electronic communications (the e-privacy regulation). The Bulgarian presidency of the Council of Ministers has published a document that has highlighted that there are different views across national governments in the EU on the rules that should apply to metadata processing.

  • Thursday, 22 March 2018

European Union reaches agreement on spectrum policy, amid industry concern

The European Parliament, the Council and the Commission have reached a provisional political agreement on spectrum policy envisioned in the European Electronic Communications Code, including the availability of radio spectrum for 5G by 2020 in the EU, 20 years investment predictability for spectrum licences, and enhanced coordination and peer review of planned radio spectrum assignment procedures.

  • Thursday, 22 March 2018

Australia kicks off inquiry into wholesale data services

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) has started a public inquiry to determine whether declaration of the domestic transmission capacity service (DTCS) remains appropriate in light of changes to the market, including the growth of commercial alternatives available to service providers, new National Broadband Network (NBN) products for business customers, and industry consolidation.

  • Thursday, 22 March 2018

US court rolls back robocall rules

A US federal appeals court has rolled back rules intended to deter irritating telemarketing robocalls, saying they were too broad, notes the Washington Post.

  • Thursday, 22 March 2018

Falsehoods travel faster and more broadly than truth

The Guardian reports a paper, published in the journal Science, in which MIT researchers describe an analysis of a vast amount of Twitter data: more than 125,000 stories, tweeted more than 4.5 million times in total, all categorised as being true or false by at least one of six independent fact-checking organisations.

  • Wednesday, 21 March 2018

Italy’s competition authority reins in influencer marketing Italy’s competition authority reins in influencer marketing

The Italian competition authority (AGCM) has carried out a first enforcement initiative on influencer marketing, “one of the most innovative and powerful advertising tools”. The initiative aims to prevent the circulation through social networks of messages whose commercial intent is not clear.

  • Thursday, 22 February 2018

India fines Google for ‘search bias’

India’s antitrust watchdog imposed a 1.36 billion rupees ($21.17 million) fine on Google for “search bias” and abuse of its dominant position, in the latest regulatory setback for the world’s most popular internet search engine, reports Reuters.

  • Thursday, 22 February 2018

France proposes law on operators and cybersecurity France proposes law on operators and cybersecurity

The French government has proposed legislation on cybersecurity that requires telecoms operators and online service providers to play a more active role in protecting the country's communications, reports Telecompaper.

  • Thursday, 22 February 2018

European Commission issues revised SMP guideline draft European Commission issues revised SMP guideline draft

The European Commission has published the drafts of revised SMP (significant market power) guidelines and an accompanying explanatory note. Both documents were sent to the Body of Regulators for Electronic Communications (BEREC) for its opinion, with a view to adopting the guidelines in the second quarter of this year.

  • Thursday, 22 February 2018

Tunisia updates regulatory priorities Tunisia updates regulatory priorities

The Tunisian telecom authority INT (Instance Nationale des Telecommunications) has published a summary of its main priorities for 2018, which include a number of new initiatives alongside its ongoing activities in the areas of consumer protection, quality of service, and regulation of wholesale broadband offers, notes Telecompaper.

  • Thursday, 22 February 2018

Proposal for a federal 5G network in the US

Telecoms and law professor Rob Frieden has written about a US National Security Council initiative that identifies the security and public safety benefits in having a government owned 5G wireless network leased by commercial ventures.

  • Thursday, 22 February 2018

European operators say status quo is better than bad reform European operators say status quo is better than bad reform

The European Telecommunications Network Operators' Association (ETNO) has warned that the current negotiations on the European Electronic Communications Code (EECC) may “result in a worsened climate for digital growth”...

  • Thursday, 22 February 2018

Netherlands pronounces on the digital economy

The Dutch government says it will come out this year with a strategy to help entrepreneurs and people in the Netherlands to benefit from the digital economy, notes Telecompaper. Secretary of State Mona Keijzer stated in an opinion that digitisation is not only about economics, but also touches on relationships in society, on safety and on accessibility.

  • Tuesday, 23 January 2018

New Zealand resumes backhaul study

New Zealand’s Commerce Commission has resumed a study into backhaul services, which was put on hold in February 2017 while the government proceeded with its review of the Telecommunications Act.

  • Tuesday, 23 January 2018

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