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Timothy B. Lee

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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 08:29 AM ET, 10/07/2011

The Circuit: FCC challenge; building broadband in rural areas; cybersecurity; LightSquared documents; Yahoo in Japan.

LEADING THE DAY: A lottery Thursday determined that the cases challenging the Federal Communications Commissions open Internet order will be consolidated and heard in the U.S. Appeals Court for the D.C. Circuit.

The court has been critical of the FCC’s power to enforce similar kinds of rules in the past. In 2010, the court sided with Comcast on net neutrality issues and said the agency’s order was outside the scope of its authority.

FCC chief announces USF plan: FCC chairman Julius Genachowski announced his proposal to reform a $8 billion phone-subsidy program and reallocate money to build out the nation’s broadband Internet network in rural America, The Washington Post reported. While providing few details about the plan, Genachowski said that he would put about $4.5 billion into two funds to connect 18 million homes to wireline and wireless Internet connections.

Genachowski also proposed changes to rate regulations on intercarrier compensation (how carriers pay each other to carry calls from one phone to another), something that concerns some consumer groups.

Cybersecurity policies: The White House will issue an executive order Friday that is intended to prevent the kind of security breaches that led to the release of hundreds of thousands of classified documents to the Web site Wikileaks, The Washington Post reported.

The order coincides with National Cybersecurity Month and directs agencies to pick a senior official to oversee classified information sharing and safeguarding. It also enshrines a number of Pentagon measures already announced, including disabling the “write” capability on most computers in the military’s secret-level classified network.

Sen. Grassley asks LightSquared to release documents:

Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) has asked LightSquared to release documents between the company and the FCC, White House and Commerce Department, the Hill reported. Asking what the company has to hide, Grassley said that it would be best to let Congress and the American people “fully examine the facts and decide for themselves.”

Grassley has previously asked the FCC for communications between the agency and the company, but was told that the agency does not release communications to committees that do not have jurisdiction over it.

Yahoo leaving the Japanese market?: A Financial Times report, citing unnamed “people familiar with the matter,” indicates that Yahoo may be considering leaving the Japanese market.

The company has a 35 percent stake in Yahoo Japan, which the report says is seen as an asset the company could dispose of quickly. Yahoo is reportedly considering allowing Japanese telecommunications firm Softbank — which has a 40 percent stake in Yahoo Japan — to buy out Yahoo.

By  |  08:29 AM ET, 10/07/2011

Tags:  Yahoo, Lightsquared, cybersecurity, FCC, Net neutrality

 
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