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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+ .

Andrea Peterson

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 08:18 AM ET, 07/18/2011

The Circuit: Wireless jobs, phone hacking, Apple scores a patent victory

LEADING THE DAY: Jobs, particularly non-union jobs, in the wireless industry are shrinking, according to a U.S. Labor Department analysis reported in the Wall Street Journal. Although the industry as a whole is growing quickly, the figures show employment at U.S. wireless carriers is at a 12-year low with about 166,000 jobs. Moves to streamline business and push more customer service online have allowed carriers to trim jobs. Bob Roche, vice president of the CTIA, said that the government’s figures may be a bit low — the industry group’s figures show that wireless providers employ 250,000 people.

Many are concerned that the proposed merger between AT&T and T-Mobile will cut more jobs from the industry. Late last week, Rep. Jay Inslee (D-Wash.) sent a letter to top AT&T and T-Mobile executives asking questions about how the proposed deal will affect competition and jobs, particularly in his Washington district.

Durbin weighs in on phone hacking: Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) has called for Congress to investigate Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp. to determine whether it violated U.S. law following the arrest of former News of the World editor Rebekah Brooks, the Hill reported. Durbin made his remarks on Sunday’s Meet the Press.

The FBI has launched an investigation into News Corp.’s practices, following calls from lawmakers, The Washington Post reported.

On Sunday, the head of Scotland Yard, Paul Stephenson, resigned after reports that police officers had taken bribes from News International, the British division of News Corp.

Apple wins HTC patent ruling: Apple scored a victory in a Friday ruling that found that HTC’s products infringe on two Apple patents, Bloomberg reported. The ruling is subject to review by the InternationalTrade Commission, which could block the import of some HTC smartphones. The ruling could be a blow not only for HTC, which took a hit on the stock market following the decision, but also for Google and its Android smartphone platform.

HTC plans to appeal the decision, the report said.

Spectrum auctions: An opinion piece from the Wall Street Journal’s Gordon Crovitz championed the idea of incentive auctions for spectrum. Crovitz said that broadcasters should be compensated for any negative impact they feel from an auction, but should stop delaying the efforts to get the auctions in motion.

“The result will be more bandwidth to meet consumer demand, with markets and not politics deciding who uses what spectrum,” he wrote.

Invite-only social networks: Driving demand for social networks, many companies are moving to an invite-only model, the New York Times reported Sunday. The exclusivity created by this kind of model has already spurred Google+, Google’s new social network, to 10 million users, the company’s CEO Larry Page revealed in an earnings call last week.

Bill Gates, Warren Buffett to the White House:Bill Gates, Melinda Gates and Warren Buffett will join President Obama at the White House today to discuss private philanthropy. The Gates’ and Buffett are co-founders of The Giving Pledge, an initative that encourages the wealthiest Americans to give to philanthropic organizations during their lives or after their death. Other notable tech titans who’ve made the pledge include Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg and Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen.

By  |  08:18 AM ET, 07/18/2011

Tags:  Google, Spectrum, FCC, FTC, IP, Apple, FBI

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