California Watchdogs Abandons Proposal For Taxing Text Messages

California Watchdogs Abandons Proposal For Taxing Text Messages

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The CPUC (California Public Utilities Commission) stated a new FCC (Federal Communications Commission) ruling guarded the state against charging a tax on text plans. The state intended to add new fees monthly onto wireless consumers’ bills to raise funds for plans that bring connectivity to underserved civilians. Regulators were planned to cast vote on the step on January 10, 2019.

The FCC placed the text tax’s prospect in doubt when it circulated a new rule on December 12, 2018, deciding text messages comprise an “information service” and not a “telecommunications service.” Carla Peterman—CPUC commissioner—removed the text tax proposal “in light of the FCC’s steps.” The supporters of the FCC’s new rule states it will provide delivery services the capability to crack down on unsolicited messages, and critics’ states it could cause to delivery services to censor the messages. The CPUC’s suggested text tax surfaced strong conflict from business trade groups—including CTIA—which signifies Sprint, AT&T Mobility (parent company of CNN), and T-Mobile. The industry group asserted that the CPUC plan would have formed inequity “amid wireless delivery services and other providers for messaging services,” like iMessage, WhatsApp, and Skype. In a legal application, CTIA stated the text tax plan as “anticompetitive, illogical, and harmful to users.”

Lately, the FCC was also in news for kicking off inquiry into broadband map accuracy. The federal administration keeps a map that emphasizes areas that have or do not have service of broadband. Critics assert this country-wide broadband map does not precisely reveal the level of access in the U.S., and reportedly the FCC is going to take steps on this. Chairman Ajit Pai recently said his agency would inspect if carrier companies have violated the rules of a rural broadband auction or presented incorrect coverage maps that would have allocated funds to construct service in underserved areas.

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