October 8, 2018-
Lack of consumer protections allows multinational service providers (internet & phone), with an unprecedented access to your personal information, to determine the market value of your personal freedoms. In 2007, Yahoo sold dissident subscriber identities to the Chinese government. In 2008, Vodafone ‘exchanged’ dissident identities for ‘country access’ in Egypt. In 2017, Google said it would stop reading our emails for personal advertising…. though not in general.
And all of that is completely legal, then and now, because in 2017 Congress overturned a 2016 FCC regulation that would have required broadband internet services providers to get consent from customers before sharing (or selling) personal data and web browsing history with others. The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has officially become an advocate of corporate rights over consumer protections in the internet service provider (ISP) world. Although arguing in 2017 that regulating ISP’s was government overreach, the FCC has now determined it can limit the fees local cities and towns charge wireless providers (ISP’s) to use their utility poles and other public assets, as well as limit the amount of time local government bodies can review and decide on ISP-use applications.