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Commissioner Pai Statement on Unlocking Cell Phones

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Released: March 11, 2013
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NEWS

Federal Communications Commission

News Media Information 202 / 418-0500

Internet: http://www.fcc.go

v

TTY: 1-888-835-5322

445 12th Street, S.W.

Washington, D. C. 20554

This is an unofficial announcement of Commission action. Release of the full text of a Commission order constitutes official action.

See MCI v. FCC. 515 F 2d 385 (D.C. Circ 1974).

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:

NEWS MEDIA CONTACT:

March 11, 2013

Matthew Berry, 202-418-2005

Email: matthew.berry@fcc.gov

STATEMENT OF COMMISSIONER AJIT PAI

ON UNLOCKING CELL PHONES

American consumers should not face jail time for unlocking their cell phones. This should not be

a matter of criminal or copyright law. Instead, it should be addressed by contract law. If a consumer is

not bound by a contract, he or she should be able to unlock his or her phone.

The Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA), as it pertains to this issue, unnecessarily

restricts consumer choice and is a case of the government going too far. Fortunately, there’s a simple

solution: a permanent exemption from the DMCA for consumers who unlock their mobile devices. I

commend the bipartisan efforts already underway to address this problem, and I hope it will be solved

expeditiously.

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