May 18, 2017 - Communications & Technology Clinic Petitions FCC and Prepares for Oral Argument in the DC Circuit

Georgetown Law's Communications & Technology Clinic is one of the oldest clinics in the country dedicated to supporting public interest communications law. Led by Professor Angela Campbell, Benton Senior Counselor Andy Schwartzman and talented graduate teaching fellows, students spend the full semester working full time on behalf of pro bono clients. 

Spring 2017 was a busy time. The clinic's core projects included:

Broadband Privacy:  The Communications and Technology Law Clinic filed, on behalf of New America’s Open Technology Institute, an opposition to multiple petitions for reconsideration of the FCC’s broadband privacy rules.This filing supported the rules adopted by the FCC last year as necessary to protect the privacy of broadband consumers and opposed weakening or repealing the rules.

Limits on Television Station Ownership:  The clinic filed a petition for reconsideration of and a motion to stay an FCC decision that would allow large media companies to acquire even more local television stations in excess of limits set by Congress. The clinic also opposed Fox Television’s request for an additional “temporary” waiver allowing Fox to exceed ownership limits on television stations and newspapers.

Prison Phone Rates:  Clinic students helped prepare Andrew Jay Schwartzman, the Benton Senior Counselor, for an oral argument in the US Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit. Shortly before the oral argument in February 2017, the FCC informed the court that it would no longer defend certain key aspects of its order lowering telephone rates for calls to and from prisons. Because the clinic represented prisoners and their families supporting the reduction in telephone rates, Schwartzman was able to step in and defend the FCC’s decision. Clinic students attended both the moot court and the actual oral argument. We are awaiting the court’s decision. 

Low Power FM Radio:  On behalf of it client Prometheus Radio Project, the clinic filed a petition for reconsideration of an FCC decision that failed to consider the detrimental effect that a new rule regarding AM radio would have on noncommercial, educational FM stations.

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