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News from 2019

APAC Bytes June 2019 APAC Bytes June 2019

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

  • Wednesday, 12 June 2019

Press Council concerns on Police raids of journalists’ office and home Press Council concerns on Police raids of journalists’ office and home

The Australian Press Council has responded to raids by the Australian Federal Police in June 2019. The raid on the ABC (Australian Broadcasting Corporation) Sydney headquarters were over ‘the Afghan Files’ – a series of investigative stories published in 2017 revealing allegations of unlawful conduct by Australian special forces that were based on secret documents leaked to the ABC.

  • Wednesday, 12 June 2019

France issues interim report on regulating Facebook and other social media

A report submitted to the French Secretary of State for Digital Affairs, and titled “Creating a French framework to make social media platforms more accountable: Acting in France with a European vision”, recommends that French authorities should have more access to Facebook’s algorithms to audit its policies on hate speech.

  • Wednesday, 15 May 2019

US competition agency reports on technology task force

The US Federal Trade Commission has testified before the House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Consumer Protection and Commerce about its efforts to protect consumers and promote competition.

  • Wednesday, 15 May 2019

ITU defines OTT and issues policy and regulatory framework recommendation

The ITU has approved a recommendation addressing the relationship between network operators and providers of over the top (OTT) applications. It says recommendation ITU-T D.262 “provides parameters for the analysis of the new economic dynamics of the ICT ecosystem and how policy and regulatory frameworks could promote competition, consumer protection, consumer benefits, dynamic innovation, sustainable investment and infrastructure development, accessibility and affordability in relation to the global growth of OTTs”.

  • Wednesday, 15 May 2019

Ofcom’s CEO highlights risk of lack of telecoms equipment choice Ofcom’s CEO highlights risk of lack of telecoms equipment choice

Sharon White, chief executive of Ofcom, the UK regulator, has said that the small number of equipment suppliers has created systemic risks to the country’s networks that may need to be addressed with regulation. She made the remarks amid tensions with the US over whether Britain will permit equipment from Chinese vendor Huawei to be used for next-generation 5G telecom services, reports Bloomberg.

  • Wednesday, 15 May 2019

GSMA issues report on 5G spectrum auction concerns GSMA issues report on 5G spectrum auction concerns

The GSMA has raised concerns about 5G spectrum auction design “artificially inflating prices, or inefficiently distributing already scarce spectrum resources, which risk harming consumers”. “Auctions can and do fail when poorly designed,” said Brett Tarnutzer, the GSMA’s head of spectrum.

  • Wednesday, 15 May 2019

Australian authority opposes merger on both mobile and broadband grounds Australian authority opposes merger on both mobile and broadband grounds

The Australian Competition & Consumer Commission (ACCC) has decided to oppose the proposed merger between TPG Telecom and Vodafone Hutchison Australia (VHA). The ACCC has concluded that it is likely to substantially lessen competition in the supply of mobile services because the merger would preclude TPG entering as the fourth mobile network operator in Australia.

  • Wednesday, 15 May 2019

APAC Bytes April 2019 APAC Bytes April 2019

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

  • Monday, 15 April 2019

Copper switch off report issued by European fibre body

The FTTH Council Europe has released a new study on copper switch-off and transition to fibre. It analyses the different stages of copper switch-off in 10 European Union member states and identifies benefits as well as enablers, incentives, challenges and barriers to switching from copper to fibre networks.

  • Monday, 18 March 2019

BBC director-general calls for updated regulation BBC director-general calls for updated regulation

BBC director-general Tony Hall has called for streamers and broadcasters to face the same regulation and highlighted what he says is the greater reach of the “pubcaster” compared with online rivals like Netflix, C21Media reports.

  • Monday, 18 March 2019

FCC presses ahead with sale of weather forecasting spectrum FCC presses ahead with sale of weather forecasting spectrum

The US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) intends to move ahead with a plan to auction off wireless radio frequencies that scientists say could harm critical satellite data used in weather forecasting, a report in the Washington Post notes.

  • Monday, 18 March 2019

UK government issues strategic priorities for Ofcom

The UK government has issued a statement of strategic priorities (SSP) to provide the regulator, Ofcom, with context and guidance about the government’s policy priorities and desired outcomes in relation to telecoms, the management of radio spectrum and postal services.

  • Tuesday, 19 February 2019

EU reaches deal on rules for online trading

The EU says it has reached a political deal on the first-ever rules aimed at creating “a fair, transparent and predictable business environment for businesses and traders when using online platforms”.

  • Tuesday, 19 February 2019

Child protection agency calls for social media regulation

A survey commissioned by the NSPCC, a UK child protection charity, reveals that 9 out of 10 parents support the regulation of social networks to make them legally responsible for protecting children, and 6 out of 10 adults do not think social networks protect children from sexual grooming and inappropriate content like self-harm and suicide.

  • Tuesday, 19 February 2019

Ethiopia proceeds with setting up telecoms regulator Ethiopia proceeds with setting up telecoms regulator

Ethiopia’s Council of Ministers has issued a new proclamation calling for the establishment of an independent federal government body to oversee the communications sector, as TeleGeography reports.

  • Tuesday, 19 February 2019

Switzerland’s regulator reviews prices

Responding to requests from Sunrise and Salt, the Switzerland’s Federal Communications Commission (ComCom) has reviewed the prices charged for the regulated telecoms services offered by the incumbent, Swisscom.

  • Tuesday, 19 February 2019

India turns down proposal for free data for the poor India turns down proposal for free data for the poor

The Indian government has turned down a proposal to offer free data to the poor, with the Telecom Commission, the top decision-making body on telecoms matters, refusing to agree to a recommendation made by regulator TRAI.

  • Tuesday, 19 February 2019

UK review of journalism tackles “uneven balance of power”

A review by Dame Frances Cairncross into the sustainability of high-quality journalism in the UK has been published, making proposals “designed to encourage new models to emerge, with the help of innovation not just in technology but in business systems and journalistic techniques”.

  • Monday, 18 February 2019

Five Minutes On...The EU Electronic Communications Code Five Minutes On...The EU Electronic Communications Code

The EU Electronic Communications Code (EECC) is a new directive consolidating and reforming the framework for the regulation of electronic communications services and networks across the EEA. Member states must adapt their existing telecommunications regulations in accordance with the EECC by 2020.

  • Tuesday, 05 February 2019

France cannot impose “right to be forgotten” on Google France cannot impose “right to be forgotten” on Google

The advocate general of the European Court of Justice has given his opinion on the “right to be forgotten” conflict between France and Google, and the opinion is relatively simple: France does not have the right to impose its own considerations on a company which operates outside its jurisdiction, notes Telecoms.com. 

  • Wednesday, 23 January 2019

The internet is fragmenting into four entities

A recent paper by British academics from Southampton University claims that the internet is splitting into four distinct governance entities. They say that the internet is a fragile construction of hardware, software, standards and databases and is run by an ever-expanding range of private and public actors constrained only by voluntary protocols and subject to political pressure. 

  • Wednesday, 23 January 2019

India’s regulator speaks on 5G priorities (Copy) India’s regulator speaks on 5G priorities (Copy)

India can be a frontrunner in deployment of 5G but much will hinge on bolstering investments in fibre infrastructure, which is currently inadequate and trailing countries like China, RS Sharma, chair of India’s regulator, TRAI, has said at a digital summit meeting.

  • Wednesday, 23 January 2019

Morocco banks on digital development plan Morocco banks on digital development plan

Morocco’s head of government, Saad Eddine El Othmani, has said the country “is betting on digital transformation to achieve a qualitative leap in economic and social development,” reports Morocco World News.

  • Wednesday, 23 January 2019

Intellectual Property Data Platform free trials

The Intellectual Property Data Platform initiative from IP Australia will enable researchers and policy makers to investigate and interrogate data in a powerful cloud-based analytical environment.

  • Wednesday, 12 June 2019

Parents seeking safety in the digital world Parents seeking safety in the digital world

“95% of parents want more information about online safety,” says Australia’s eSafety Commissioner Julie Inman Grant, who has conducted research on parenting in the digital age. The first government agency in the world dedicated to online safety, eSafety produced the report ‘Parenting in the digital age’ to explore the experience of parents and carers raising children in a fast-paced connected world.

  • Wednesday, 12 June 2019

EU Court of Justice Determines that SkypeOut is an Electronic Communications Service EU Court of Justice Determines that SkypeOut is an Electronic Communications Service

On 5 June 2019, the Court of Justice of the EU ("CJEU") published its ruling on the classification of SkypeOut in the EU following a request for a preliminary ruling from the Belgian Courts. Skype is a Voice over IP service ("VoIP") whereas the SkypeOut component is an interconnected VoIP service that allows the service to dial out to landline and mobile numbers.

  • Thursday, 06 June 2019

US mobile operator merger could increase prices US mobile operator merger could increase prices

Despite a lengthy process that started way back in the spring of 2018, US mobile operators Sprint and T-Mobile have agreed to extend the deadline for their proposed merger another 2 months until 29 June, reports Gizmodo.

  • Wednesday, 15 May 2019

European regulation centre publishes platform economy report

The Centre on Regulation in Europe (CERRE) has published “Market definition and market power in the platform economy”, which provides guidance on how to define markets and on how to assess market power when dealing with two-sided platforms.

  • Wednesday, 15 May 2019

Rwanda set to regulate social media Rwanda set to regulate social media

Rwanda’s government is aiming to regulate social media content, a move which is intended to curb the spread of misinformation, according to the minister for ICT and innovation, Paula Ingabire, as AllAfrica reports.

  • Wednesday, 15 May 2019

Dutch regulator focuses on net neutrality and infrastructure implications of 5G Dutch regulator focuses on net neutrality and infrastructure implications of 5G

Dutch regulator, ACM, plans to work on two themes concerning 5G, reports Telecompaper: the application of net neutrality and infrastructure sharing. “A spokesperson for the ACM said the application of net neutrality raises important questions for 5G and infrastructure sharing will become relevant again once operators start rolling out 5G networks.

  • Wednesday, 15 May 2019

France, Canada, line up consumers for internet quality testing

Arcep, France’s regulator, has published a draft decision for public consultation on implementing an application programming interface (API), to be installed directly in operators’ boxes, for measuring the quality of fixed internet services.

  • Wednesday, 15 May 2019

APAC Bytes May 2019 APAC Bytes May 2019

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

  • Tuesday, 14 May 2019

ACMA releases Scam Technology Project Terms of Reference ACMA releases Scam Technology Project Terms of Reference

The Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) will, in consultation with key stakeholders, undertake a Scam Technology Project (the Project) to explore practical technological solutions to address the proliferation of scams over Australian telecommunications networks.

  • Wednesday, 10 April 2019

IIC Canadian Chapter Annual Conference rescheduled for early 2020

The Canadian Chapter has recently decided to reschedule its traditional fall annual conference, which had been scheduled for October 1 and 2nd. Recognizing that this date was close to the 50th Annual IIC conference in London, the Canadian chapter decided to reschedule the conference until early in 2020.

  • Sunday, 07 April 2019

Digital rights and fake news laws passed in Russia Digital rights and fake news laws passed in Russia

Russian lawmakers have established “digital rights” in domestic law as the basis for the digital economy, and have also introduced a package of bills to tackle fake news, reports the Global Legal Post.

  • Monday, 18 March 2019

Google pushes back against competition concerns in Australia Google pushes back against competition concerns in Australia

Google has rejected calls by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) for tougher scrutiny of its operations, denying that it enjoys market power in online searches and advertising, Reuters reports.

  • Monday, 18 March 2019

Talk continues of a 5G wholesale network in the US

Kevin Werbach, who was an adviser on telecom policy in the Clinton and Obama administrations, has written in the New York Times about the Trump administration’s short-lived idea for an open wholesale 5G network.

  • Monday, 18 March 2019

UK upper house calls for digital ‘super-regulator’ UK upper house calls for digital ‘super-regulator’

The UK’s House of Lords has called for the creation of a digital super-regulator to oversee the different bodies charged with safeguarding the internet and replace the “clearly failing” system of self-regulation by big technology companies, reports the Guardian.

  • Monday, 18 March 2019

Review of Australian Defamation Act Review of Australian Defamation Act

A report of the statutory review of the Defamation Act 2005 (the Act), which implements the Model Defamation Provisions (MDP) in NSW has covered key issues pertaining to Australian defamation law.

  • Monday, 18 March 2019

APAC Bytes Mar 2019 APAC Bytes Mar 2019

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

  • Wednesday, 13 March 2019

Bahrain’s regulator rules on mobile competition

Bahrain’s Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (TRA) has published a final determination in its review of competition in the wholesale mobile termination market, concluding that messaging termination services on mobile operators should no longer be subject to ex-ante regulation, while the wholesale market for call termination services remains under ex-ante regulation by TRA.

  • Tuesday, 19 February 2019

Philippines approves ICT strategy

The Philippines House of Representatives has unanimously approved House Bill 3437, which seeks to provide for an “online network establishment” (ONE) policy for the country. Principally authored by deputy speaker Rose Marie “Baby” Arenas, HB 3437 or the “ONE Philippines Act” hopes to minimise the so-called digital divide and speed up wireless communications technology in the country.

  • Tuesday, 19 February 2019

“Contentious” South African communications bill withdrawn “Contentious” South African communications bill withdrawn

Stella Ndabeni-Abrahams, South Africa’s communications minister, has withdrawn the contentious Electronic Communications Amendment Bill, reports TechCentral. “The draft legislation, which creates the framework for a wholesale open-access network has drawn severe criticism from Vodacom, MTN and others over, among other things, its proposal to force network operators to provide wholesale access to their infrastructure on a cost-orientated and open-access basis...

  • Tuesday, 19 February 2019

Hard hitting UK report on fake news focuses on Facebook Hard hitting UK report on fake news focuses on Facebook

The final report in the UK of the Digital, Culture, Media and Sport select committee’s 18-month investigation into disinformation and fake news has accused Facebook of purposefully obstructing its inquiry and failing to tackle attempts by Russia to manipulate elections, reports the Guardian.

  • Tuesday, 19 February 2019

Germany aims to control not ban equipment vendors Germany aims to control not ban equipment vendors

Germany’s interior minister, Horst Seehofer, “has thrown his weight behind a proposal to reform Germany’s telecoms law to toughen security requirements on foreign network vendors”, reports Reuters, citing reports from the country.

  • Tuesday, 19 February 2019

FCC completes first 5G spectrum auction FCC completes first 5G spectrum auction

The US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has completed its first 5G auction, with a sale of 28 GHz spectrum licences raising $702 million, notes Mobile World Live.

  • Tuesday, 19 February 2019

APAC Bytes Feb 2019 APAC Bytes Feb 2019

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

  • Monday, 18 February 2019

Streaming video market puts pressure on traditional broadcasters

There will be more than 777 million global streaming video on demand (SVOD) subscriptions by 2023, more than double from 2017, according to Ooyala’s latest State of the Broadcast Industry 2019 report, which also found that the momentum only stands to increase. 

  • Wednesday, 23 January 2019

Philippines mandates working at home but ICT needs to catch up Philippines mandates working at home but ICT needs to catch up

The Philippines ICT agency has called on telecoms operators to raise their game to provide more reliable internet connections for workers, after the government passed new regulations allowing employees to work from home, notes Mobile World Live. 

  • Wednesday, 23 January 2019

GDPR privacy violations reported by enforcement organisation GDPR privacy violations reported by enforcement organisation

A test by noyb, a European non-profit organisation for privacy enforcement, shows violations of privacy law by most streaming services. In more than 10 test cases was able to identify violations of Article 15 of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) by companies including Amazon, Apple, DAZN, Spotify and Netflix, and it has filed 10 strategic complaints against 8 companies. 

  • Wednesday, 23 January 2019

India’s regulator speaks on 5G priorities India’s regulator speaks on 5G priorities

India can be a frontrunner in deployment of 5G but much will hinge on bolstering investments in fibre infrastructure, which is currently inadequate and trailing countries like China, RS Sharma, chair of India’s regulator, TRAI, has said at a digital summit meeting.

  • Wednesday, 23 January 2019

Challenge mounts for FCC’s 5G cell tower rules Challenge mounts for FCC’s 5G cell tower rules

US regulator, the FCC, has forced local governments to charge a flat fee for 5G cell towers, which has been opposed by everyone except the mobile operators, and has been challenged by new legislation, reports The Register. 

  • Wednesday, 23 January 2019

Operators file suit against Germany’s 5G terms Operators file suit against Germany’s 5G terms

Deutsche Telekom has become the latest operator to file a lawsuit against the conditions for participating in Germany’s 5G mobile spectrum auction, which is scheduled to take place in the spring, notes TeleGeography. 

  • Wednesday, 23 January 2019

UN ramps up internet resolutions UN ramps up internet resolutions

The UN General Assembly (UNGA) has passed a record number of resolutions relevant for internet policy at its latest session, notes the Association for Progressive Communications (APC). 

  • Wednesday, 23 January 2019

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