Gigi Sohn has been nominated by President Joe Biden to serve on the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), but not a single Republican in the Senate has said they will vote to approve her confirmation. If every Senate Democrat votes to confirm her, plus Vice President Kamala Harris as a tie-breaking vote, Sohn will be confirmed, but insiders say two pivotal Democratic senators have indicated they will vote no, Arizona’s Kyrsten Sinema and Mark Kelly.
In an op-ed for The Register-Herald, former West Virginia legislator Mike Oliverio said Sohn has “radical left-wing viewpoints.” He cited her “record calling Fox News state-sponsored propaganda and questioning whether Sinclair Broadcasting should have their broadcast licenses revoked.”
President Joe Biden’s nominee to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), Gigi Sohn, cut a favorable deal with broadcasters shortly after she was nominated to the regulatory agency.
Sohn previously worked as a director of Locast, a streaming service that transmitted local television broadcasts on the internet. The company was shut down in October 2021 after broadcasters sued and a judge ruled the service was in violation of copyright law. Locast entered into a settlement agreement with broadcasters requiring the service to pay $32 million in damages.
Biden nominated Sohn to an empty commissioner position at the FCC, which is tasked with regulating the broadcast industry, in late October; however, one day after she was nominated, Sohn signed a confidential agreement with broadcasters cutting the amount of damages Locast would pay to around $700,000, according to a copy of the agreement seen by Bloomberg Law.
Gov. Gretchen Whitmer has announced plans to spend billions of federal tax dollars to increase high-speed internet access in the state.
The governor issued Executive Directive 2021-12 Monday, designed to expand access to high-speed internet in Michigan. The programs will be funded from money the state is anticipated to receive from the recently passed Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act.
Attempts to “bridge the digital divide” have been implemented through federal and state programs since the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) initiated its National Broadband Plan in 2010, with money from the 2009 American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. Michigan has allocated additional federal funds, including:
Senate Commerce Republicans are whipping opposition to the nomination of Gigi Sohn, one of President Joe Biden’s picks for the Federal Communications Commission (FCC).
Biden nominated Sohn, former FCC counsel under Tom Wheeler and Ford Foundation alum, to an empty spot on the commission in late October, along with current acting Chair Jessica Rosenworcel to the permanent position.
While Republicans have been quiet in their response to the nomination of Rosenworcel, many are pointing to Sohn’s public statements on conservatives as reasons to oppose her confirmation.
A far-left group funded by radical billionaire George Soros submitted a letter to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) calling for Republicans to be murdered, according to the Washington Free Beacon.
The group in question is Free Press, which is funded by Soros’s Open Society Foundation, as well as the Center for American Progress, the Tides Foundation, and other far-left organizations. Free Press, whose stated goal is to “reshape media” in the United States, submitted a letter signed by almost 5,000 of its members baselessly accusing the FCC of systemic racism.
The United States government has allegedly approved the sale of hundreds of millions of dollars worth of electronic chips to Chinese technology giant Huawei, in a massive reversal of a Trump-era policy by the Biden Administration, as reported by the Daily Caller.
The report was first made by Reuters on Wednesday, which cited two anonymous sources who claimed to be familiar with the deal. Huawei intends to use the new supply of chips to construct more automatic components of automobiles, including video monitors and motion sensors. Huawei allegedly asked the suppliers to raise the value of chips from hundreds of millions to at least one billion for the next sale after the four-year licensing agreement expires.
Three Senate Republicans introduced a bill Wednesday requiring the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to consider collecting revenue from major tech companies to fund broadband internet.
The Funding Affordable Internet with Reliable Contributions Act, introduced by Sens. Roger Wicker, Todd Young, and Shelley Moore Capito, directs the FCC to consider collecting Universal Service Fund (USF) contributions from Big Tech companies “such as YouTube, Netflix, and Google,” the lawmakers announced in a statement Wednesday. USF is a subsidy fund of the FCC that dispenses around $10 billion a year for broadband internet infrastructure in rural areas, according to the FCC website.
President Joe Biden is taking aim at Big Tech and Big Telecom’s growing power with a new executive order that will add regulations and facilitate competition within the industries.
The order, which Biden is expected to sign Friday, includes over 70 provisions, all aimed at promoting competition within tech and telecom, both of which have become more monopolistic in recent years.
It encourages the Federal Trade Commission to overhaul its rules regarding personal data collection and bans unfair competition practices online, according to a White House fact sheet. It also calls for more scrutiny when examining potential corporate mergers, especially when a larger corporation acquires a smaller one or when it could affect customers’ privacy or competition within the sector.
The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is accepting applications for an economic relief program providing $50 per month to help low-income families pay for broadband.
“The Emergency Broadband Benefit program will provide a discount of up to $50 per month towards broadband service for eligible households and up to $75 per month for households on qualifying Tribal lands,” states an announcement shared Wednesday by Congressman Rob Wittman (R-Virginia-01). “Eligible households can also receive a one-time discount of up to $100 to purchase a laptop, desktop computer, or tablet from participating providers if they contribute more than $10 and less than $50 toward the purchase price.”
Federal Communication Commission Chairman Ajit Pai announced Thursday that he intends to move forward with a rulemaking to “clarify” the meaning of Section 230 of the Communication Decency Act.
Pai’s announcement comes one day after Twitter prohibited users from posting links to a New York Post story about alleged emails involving Hunter Biden, former Vice President Joe Biden and the Ukrainian gas company Burisma. Twitter’s suppression of the story led President Donald Trump to call for the repeal of Section 230, which indemnifies internet companies from liability over content posted by their users.
Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai has rejected U.S. Rep. Mark Green’s (R-TN-07) request to grant churches and other houses of worship a temporary waiver to use long-range FM transmitters without fear of harsh government fines.
Pai denied Green’s request this month.
Green, in a letter he sent to the FCC in June, specifically cited the COVID-19 pandemic as prompting him to request this.
More support is being thrown behind a plan to have the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) auction off mid-band spectrum for 5G use rather than allow satellite operators to conduct a private sale of an asset they received for free.