Senate Dems Aim To Block Simington

Two Senate Democrats —  Richard Blumenthal from Connecticut (l) and Ron Wyden (Ore.) — and a coalition of digital rights groups are hoping to derail the confirmation of telecom lawyer Nathan Simington to the FCC, arguing that his appointment during the lame-duck session would hamper President-Elect Joe Biden’s policy agenda.

Blumenthal Threatens Hold On Simington Nom

Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) says he will put a hold on the nomination of Nate Simington for a Republican seat on the FCC until and unless he commits to recusing himself from any decision on the fate of Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, the legal provision that gives social media networks immunity from civil liability for how they moderate their networks.

New Bill Would Regulate Online Kids Content

Two Senate Democrats proposed a bill Thursday that would regulate the way online sites display and promote content and ads aimed at children under the age of 16. The Kids Internet Design and Safety (KIDS) Act, introduced by Sens. Richard Blumenthal (l) and Ed Markey, would prohibit operators of platforms aimed at users under 16 from using “auto-play” settings on videos. The measure would also ban those operators encouraging young users by offering them “badges” for playing games, or sending them push alerts.

Senators Want Portable Social Media Data

Three U.S. lawmakers active in tech issues will introduce a bill requiring social networks like Facebook to allow users to pack up their data and go elsewhere, Sen. Mark Warner’s office said in a statement on Tuesday. The senators, Republican Josh Hawley and Democrats Warner and Richard Blumenthal, are introducing the bill at a time when there is growing concern that Facebook, along with Alphabet’s Google, have become so powerful that smaller rivals are unable to lure away their users.

Lawmakers Blast FTC’s $5B Facebook Settlement

“We are concerned that the FTC has failed to impose strict structural reforms and managerial accountability that would put an end to Facebook’s privacy invasions,” Sens. Ed Markey, Richard Blumenthal and Josh Hawley write.

Senators Call For Investigation Of Smart TV

Two Democratic senators have asked the FTC to investigate the business practices of smart-television manufacturers amid worries that companies are tracking consumers’ viewing behavior without their knowledge.

Blumenthal, Clyburn: Don’t Unleash Comcast

FCC Commissioner Mignon Clyburn and Sen. Richard Blumenthal argue that seven years after merging with NBCUniversal, the cable giant could still undermine competition.

Senator Wants DOJ To Look At Comcast-NBC

Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) is calling on the Justice Department to investigate whether the 2011 Comcast-NBC merger has hurt market competition. Blumenthal sent a letter to the Trump administration’s top antitrust prosecutor, Makan Delrahim, on Wednesday, asking him to revisit the deal and to try to keep in place behavioral conditions that are set to expire next year.

Senators Urge Wheeler To Move On STBs

They want the commission to launch a rulemaking to allow consumers to use set-top boxes of their choice to receive MVPD programming.

Sens. Ask Moonves About ‘Local Choice’ Ads

Senators Deb Fischer (R-Neb.) and Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) want to know specific reasons for CBS radio stations’ rejection of an ad by the American Television Alliance.

New Senate Attack On Ad Tax Deduction

Tom Harkin (D-Iowa) and Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) have introduced a bill called the Stop Subsidizing Childhood Obesity Act, that would prohibit deductions of expenses from the advertising of foods and beverages of “poor nutritional quality” that are marketed to kids. The proceeds would go to a government program that provides fresh fruit and vegetable snacks to low-income school children.

Blumenthal Backs McCain’s A La Carte Bill

Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) has signed on to co-sponsor the Television Consumer Freedom Act of 2013 with Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.). The bill, introduced in May, seeks to coerce the pay TV industry to start selling channels to consumers on an a la carte basis instead of large bundles.

Lawmakers Cheer NFL Blackout Rule Change

Sens. Sherrod Brown, Richard Blumenthal and Rep. Brian Higgins have praised the league owners’ recent decision to let teams decide whether local TV broadcasters can air games if the stadium is at least 85% full. The original NFL rule had required broadcasters to black out the games if the local team did not sell out the stadium.