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Timothy B. Lee

Timothy B. Lee

Timothy B. Lee covers technology policy, including copyright and patent law, telecom regulation, privacy, and free speech. He also writes about the economics of technology. He has previously written for Ars Technica and Forbes. You can follow him on Twitter or send him email.

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Brian Fung

Brian Fung covers technology for The Washington Post, focusing on electronic privacy, national security, digital politics and the Internet that binds it all together. He was previously the technology correspondent for National Journal and an associate editor at the Atlantic. His writing has also appeared in Foreign Policy, Talking Points Memo, the American Prospect and Nonprofit Quarterly. Follow Brian on Google+ .

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Andrea Peterson

Andrea Peterson covers technology policy for The Washington Post, with an emphasis on cybersecurity, consumer privacy, transparency, surveillance and open government. She also delves into the societal impacts of technology access and how innovation is intertwined with cultural development.

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Posted at 04:40 PM ET, 05/28/2013

The Circuit: Court strikes down FCC order for Comcast to include Tennis Channel in bundle

Court rules FCC can’t dictate Comcast bundle: A federal appeals court ruled that Comcast does not have to include the Tennis Channel in the same cable bundle as sports channels that it owns. The ruling strikes down a 2012 order from the Federal Communications Commission.

The D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that there was insufficient proof that consumers were adversely affected by Comcast’s decision not to put the Tennis Channel in the same bundle as other sports channels it owned, or that Comcast was discriminating against the Tennis Channel.

Sprint, Softbank and national security: As lawmakers debate a proposed deal to allow Softbank to take over Sprint, takeover rival Dish Network has mounted a campaign to highlight the risk of a Softbank deal to national security,

Dish has submitted a competing bid for the Sprint, while the Softbank deal is under review by the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States. If the takeover is approved, The Washington Post reported, the United States will be able to create rules that stop SoftBank from buying foreign equipment for Sprint’s networks — oversight it wouldn’t have if Dish were to purchase the carrier.

Some experts argue, however, that the great oversight isn’t a good reason to approve a deal. In testimony before a House committee, Stewart Baker, former head of CFIUS, said that the Softbank offer provided an “odd set of incentives” for the government.

In an e-mailed response to The Post article, Baker said that the United States should be concerned about foreign ownership of critical infrastructure and that, in the case of the Sprint deal, that “foreign ownership often increases the risk of untrustworthy products entering the supply chain.”

“That risk is acute in view of SoftBank’s past supply chain partnerships,” Baker said.

Report says U.S. weapons systems designs compromised: A report prepared for the Pentagon disclosed that designs for some of the nation’s most sensitive advanced weapons systems have been compromised by hackers from China, The Post reported.

As the report notes, the types of targets that have been compromised can help to explain why the Obama administration has increased its warnings to the Chinese government on cybersecurity issues.

Hon Hai and Mozilla confirm partnership: Hon Hai Industries and Mozilla have announced date for a major announcement in Taiwan, which is setting off speculation that the companies are teaming up on a new smartphone or tablet.

A Mozilla spokesperson confirmed to The Post that the event would take place on June 3 in Taipei City but declined to provide details on what the companies may be cooking up.

Mozilla made a stir in February when it showed off its Firefox OS, a new mobile operating system, and said it was working with manufacturers LG, Huawei, ZTE and Alcatel. Telefonica, a carrier partner, also announced that Mozilla had been speaking to Sony about a new phone. The news also comes shortly after a Wall Street Journal report that Hon Hai is looking to expand beyond assembling electronics for Apple, Microsoft, HP Sony and Nokia among others. According to that report, Hon Hai wants to provide more software and content for the electronics it makes and is hiring software engineers.

By  |  04:40 PM ET, 05/28/2013

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