Dan Kahn

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ECJ Confirms Application of Consumer Protection Measure to Cross-Border Services

By Miranda Cole and Katharina Grosse-Ophoff In its UPC judgment this week the European Court of Justice (“ECJ”) has clarified the application of consumer protection laws to, and the jurisdiction of national regulatory authorities over, providers of electronic communications services (“ECS”) that are established in one member state who provide services in another.  The court also confirmed that … Continue Reading

FCC Establishes Quality Standards for Closed Captioning

By Daniel Kahn and Paul Swain The FCC has adopted new rules regarding closed captioning quality for television programming.  At its meeting yesterday, the Commission unanimously approved a Report & Order that will establish four “non-quantitative” quality standards for closed captioning, requiring captions to be (1) accurate, (2) synchronous, (3) complete, and (4) properly placed.  … Continue Reading

FCC Proposes $200,000 Fine For Simulated EAS Codes

The FCC has proposed fining Turner Broadcasting System $200,000 for allegedly transmitting simulated Emergency Alert System (EAS) codes 14 times over a six day period in the absence of an actual emergency.   Two viewers complained that an advertisement that aired on Turner’s Adult Swim Network (which shares channel airtime with the Cartoon Network) contained audio … Continue Reading

Supreme Court Agrees to Hear Aereo

Today, the U.S. Supreme Court agreed to hear litigation between broadcasters and Aereo, a streaming service that retransmits broadcast programming without consent or payment.  Broadcasters argue that Aereo infringes their exclusive right to publicly perform copyrighted works.  Aereo contends that its system uses one antenna per subscriber to provide each user a separate copy of … Continue Reading

Deadline Nears for Online Captioning of Full-Length Programming Edited For Internet Distribution

Under the Internet closed captioning requirements established by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), after certain triggering deadlines, video programming shown on television with captions in the United States and distributed in full-length form over Internet Protocol (IP) must be provided with captions online.  Beginning on September 30, 2013, the IP closed captioning requirements will apply … Continue Reading

Ninth Circuit Panel Rules Against Fox Preliminary Injunction Request in Dish Hopper Case

Recently, a Ninth Circuit panel unanimously affirmed the district court’s denial of a preliminary injunction in Fox’s copyright and contractual challenge to Dish’s Hopper set-top boxes and related AutoHop feature.  The Ninth Circuit emphasized that it applied a “limited and deferential review” that does not “determin[e] the ultimate merits of the case.”  In particular, the … Continue Reading

FCC Seeks Comment on Video Description

The Media Bureau of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is seeking comments by September 4 on issues related to video description, which is the transmission of a secondary audio track describing the visible action in video programming for the benefit of individuals who are blind or visually impaired.  Under FCC rules, local TV station affiliates … Continue Reading

Second Circuit Affirms Denial of Aereo Preliminary Injunction

Today, the federal Second Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed by a 2-1 decision the district court’s decision declining to issue a preliminary injunction against Aereo’s broadcast television streaming service.  The plaintiffs had requested a preliminary injunction on the basis that Aereo allegedly infringes their exclusive right to publicly perform their copyrighted works. … Continue Reading

March 30, 2013, Deadline Nears for Online Captioning of Live and Near-Live Programming

Under the Internet closed captioning requirements established by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), after certain triggering deadlines, video programming shown on television with captions in the United States and distributed in full-length form over Internet Protocol (IP) must be provided with captions online.  Beginning on March 30, 2013, the IP closed captioning requirements will apply … Continue Reading

CPNI Certifications Due on March 1

As a reminder, telecommunications carriers must submit their annual certifications regarding customer proprietary network information (CPNI) by March 1.  CPNI is private customer information concerning telecommunications. Telecommunications carriers and providers of interconnected Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) must certify annually to the FCC that they comply with their obligations to protect and limit disclosure of … Continue Reading

FCC Reminds Wireless Service Providers of Jan. 15, 2013, Hearing Aid Compatibility Report Deadline

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) recently issued an enforcement advisory reminding wireless service providers and resellers that they must report on their compliance with the hearing aid compatibility rules by January 15, 2013.  Under FCC rules, most wireless service providers must offer consumers a minimum number of hearing-aid compatible phones or other handsets.  The purpose … Continue Reading

FCC Proposes Requiring Emergency Information On Secondary Audio Stream

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) recently proposed requiring that when broadcast television stations or cable/satellite companies display emergency information visually during non-news programming, they must provide the same information aurally on a “secondary” audio stream.  When viewers tune to a channel, they ordinarily hear the primary audio stream; the secondary audio stream can be used to provide … Continue Reading

Oral Argument Scheduled in Aereo Appeal

On November 30, 2012, the Second Circuit Court of Appeals will hear oral argument regarding whether to uphold the trial judge’s decision to decline to enjoin Aereo’s “Watch Now” television streaming service pending the outcome of a full trial.  Major television networks and broadcast stations serving the New York City-area market are seeking to prevent … Continue Reading

Supreme Court to Hear Case on FCC Jurisdiction to Establish Zoning “Shot Clock”

The Supreme Court has agreed to hear a case on the ability of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) and other federal agencies to determine the scope of their own jurisdiction.  Generally, under the Supreme Court’s decision in Chevron USA v. NRDC, courts must defer to agencies’ interpretations of ambiguous statutes within the agencies’ respective areas … Continue Reading

Netflix Settles Online Closed Captioning Litigation

Recently, Netflix settled a lawsuit brought by the National Association for the Deaf (NAD) that alleged that its online closed captioning practices violated the American with Disabilities Act (ADA).  As a part of the settlement, Netflix agreed to caption all of its “Watch Instantly” programming by September 30, 2014.  Until then, Netflix will provide a … Continue Reading

FCC Extends Online Closed Captioning User Control Mandate Until January 2014

On Friday, the FCC’s Media Bureau issued a decision that extends until January 1, 2014 the deadline for all online video programming distributors (“VPDs”) to implement user controls in connection with their delivery of Internet Protocol closed captioning.   Prior to this decision, VPDs that provide applications or plug-ins in order to deliver video programming had … Continue Reading

SpectrumWatch: Incentive Auction Next Steps Expected This Fall

Welcome to the first post in our SpectrumWatch series, which will provide updates on developments in spectrum policy and regulation. Earlier this year Congress passed legislation authorizing the FCC to create the first-of-its-kind incentive auction, in which TV broadcasters may bid on compensation to give up spectral license rights for auction to mobile wireless carriers.  … Continue Reading

N.Y. Court Holds that DMCA Safe Harbor Applies to Pre-1972 Sound Recordings

Recently, in UMG Recordings v. Escape Media Group, a New York state court held that the safe harbor provisions of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (“DMCA”) may provide the operator of the website grooveshark.com protection against state law copyright claims based on pre-1972 sound recordings. The DMCA provides a “safe harbor” against legal liability for … Continue Reading

FFIEC Issues Risk Management Guidance for Cloud Computing

By Mike Nonaka On July 10, the Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council (FFIEC) issued risk management guidance for depository institutions’ use of cloud computing.  The guidance defines cloud computing generally as “a migration from owned resources to shared resources in which client users receive information technology services, on demand, from third-party service providers via the Internet ‘cloud.’”  … Continue Reading
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