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Verizon and MetroPCS think blocking apps should be legal, appeal the FCC’s decision

Verizon MetroPCS Blocking Apps

Verizon Wireless (VZ) and MetroPCS (PCS) have filed paperwork to appeal a Federal Communications Commission policy that prevents carriers from controlling apps and other services on devices that run on their networks. The FCC decision, which went into effect in December 2011, has already forced Verizon to stop its practice of blocking tethering apps while also fining the carrier $1.25 million. Both mobile operators, however, argue that the FCC is overstepping its mandate and look to reverse the decision. Verizon and MetroPCS argue that the ruling is unconstitutional and violates the First Amendment, claiming that “broadband networks are the modern-day microphone by which their owners engage in First Amendment speech.” The carriers state that the rules are “arbitrary and capricious,” and also violate the Telecommunications Act of 1996.

Prior to joining BGR as News Editor, Brad Reed spent five years covering the wireless industry for Network World. His first smartphone was a BlackBerry but he has since become a loyal Android user.