[Follow-Up] Senator Amy Klobuchar Intoduces Bill to Legalize Unlocking Cell Phones

Discussion in 'Android News' started by dgstorm, Mar 5, 2013.

  1. dgstorm

    dgstorm Editor in Chief
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    We have a follow-up article to share with you today regarding the movement to make it legal to unlock your cell phone. Senator Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) has taken up the call to action following the White House's response yesterday affirming their desire to see this happen. She has just introduced a bill to address the issue, and intends to "get rid of the ban on unlocking cellphones." The FCC Chairman agrees with this action. Here's a quote with a few more details,

    It's actually rather surprising that things are moving so swiftly. It was barely two weeks ago when the petition was first sent to the White House to get the ban lifted. Now, only a day after the White House's response, a Senator is taking action to change things. Of course, we will have to see if the bill passes through the House before we can call anything a victory, but at least the ball is rolling.

    Source: TheVerge
     
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  2. wicked

    wicked Administrator
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    Moving along faster than I thought it would.. That's great. :biggrin:
     
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  3. MissionImprobable

    MissionImprobable Silver Member

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    Legally protected unlocking, universal LTE chips, and Google maybe entering the Wireless marketplace sometime in the future?

     
  4. npro1464

    npro1464 Member

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    Sadly, i think the government is doing this in almost a cynical way- quickly get behind and pass something petitioned on that stupid site so they can claim they finally did something with it. Seems like a very non-controversial issue- allow phones to be unlocked after their contracts. Who wants to keep that 2 year old phone when it comes out of contract anyway?
     
  5. xsylus

    xsylus Active Member

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    Too bad we can't force congress to take some laxatives and get other $#!% to move this quickly in Washington. This is awesome news and it's nice to see consumer rights winning out over corporate greed. On the flip side I doubt there would have been much enforcement for this had it gone the other way - just look at the anti-piracy enforcement - seems like a never ending battle. At any rate the last thing Washington needs is more pissed-off people knocking on their door. :icon_ devil:
     
  6. LoneWolfArcher

    LoneWolfArcher Silver Member

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    Okay this is starting to turn into a foul smelling political issue and I don't like where it is headed. I can see this becoming an anti-Big Business initiative, with all the usual anti-Big Business political types getting on the train. In the end I am not sure how many have actually unlocked their phone, not saying that is a reason not to keep it legal. But if this turns into an anti-Big Business effort then my support for it is out. I am tired of that line of thinking. Many of us are employed by Big Business and to continue to make it out to be some type of political monster is ridiculous.
     
  7. dgstorm

    dgstorm Editor in Chief
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    Why does it have to be so "black and white"? I don't see this as becoming a political monster at all. It's just an issue that is important to many consumers. Just because you are pro-consumer protection, doesn't mean you necessarily have to be anti-Big Business. As long as Big Business works synergistically with its customer base, it is one of the prime movers of growth and social evolution. But that doesn't mean it can be unequivocally trusted to run rampant without any regulation. There must be balance in all things. Not too much regulation, but not too little either.

    Just my 2.5 cents. :)
     
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  8. xeene

    xeene Silver Member

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    this crowd is hard to please. take it away, they complain. give it back, they still complain. take off your tinfoil hats and enjoy the fact that you guys made a difference for a change.
     
  9. johnomaz

    johnomaz Silver Member

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    ^^ THIS. Perhaps its an issue that is pretty cut and dry on how it should be done. Not every issue is an easy one, but this one seems that way.
     
  10. LoneWolfArcher

    LoneWolfArcher Silver Member

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    I agree with much of what you say. I just see this as being largely a non-issue. 99.9% of users will never unlock their phones. I think a lot of this is what I said it is: an us vs. them mentality.

    I'd like to see it handled NOT through legislation. Maybe the wireless companies could work with "power users" that go through a certification to get approval to do these types of things. I can see both sides of this issue, and you're right it isn't black and white, there are fair arguments on both sides. But there are also an "all or nothing majority" on both sides.
     
  11. MissionImprobable

    MissionImprobable Silver Member

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    Sorry, but I'd much rather it's done to the point saying that consumers are free to do as they please with their devices rather than being at the mercy of a wireless company as to whether or not you qualify to be able to do this. The only reason it's not common here is because it's not easy to move phones around like it is in other countries. With the exception of Canada, most other countries offer contracts as short as a year, and in almost all other major wireless hot spots it isn't uncommon to go pre-paid with company "X" then at some point switch to company "Y" via an unlocked device.

    I see no point in making this anymore difficult than necessary.
     
  12. dgstorm

    dgstorm Editor in Chief
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    I definitely agree that sometimes these situations devolve into an "us vs. them" mentality, and that it is very unhealthy for that too happen. It can be a challenge to find the right balance, where everyone feels their position is as fair as the next person or group. I can also see the argument that there exists too much legislation sometimes.

    Still, in this instance, it seems like the legislation is simply trying to follow "common sense," and protect consumer choice. If you think about it, this legislation actually decreases legislation. What is really happening here is that legislation is being introduced which would remove a previous law which makes it illegal to unlock a device that we paid for. You can argue the whole software licensing angle to death, but the bottom line is if I want to remove the software on my piece of hardware and take it to a different carrier with different software, I should be able to do that.

    It's no different than if I had a PC that had specific software licenses for my specific internet provider. If I switch internet providers I should be able to put different software on my hardware that I ultimately paid for after my contract was complete. I shouldn't be required to buy a whole new PC. That makes zero sense.
     
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