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20th of March 2018


Court Sides with FTC, Says AT&T Cannot Escape Jurisdiction of the Agency

California appeals court today gave Federal Trade Commission the green light to move forward with a lawsuit alleging that AT&T Inc was deceptive in slowing internet speeds to customers with unlimited plans. Diane Bartz reporting in Reuters: "The FTC sued AT&T in 2014 on the grounds that the No. 2 U.S. wireless carrier failed to inform consumers it would slow, or 'throttle,' the speeds of heavy data users on unlimited plans. In some cases, data speeds were slowed by nearly 90 percent, the FTC said. AT&T had argued that it was exempt from FTC regulation because it is a common carrier." Today's ruling however states that "the commoncarrier exemption applies only to the extent that an entity actually engages in common-carrier activities. Under this 'activity-based' interpretation, an entity's non-commoncarriage activities are subject to FTC regulation. At the time the FTC filed suit, mobile data provision was not a 'common carrier service.'"

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