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Commission's Implementation of Serving Parties in Electronic Format

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Released: August 24, 2012

PUBLIC NOTICE

Federal Communications Commission

News Media Information 202 / 418-0500

445 12th St., S.W.

Internet: http://www.fcc.gov

Washington, D.C. 20554

TTY: 1-888-835-5322

DA 12-1401

Released: August 24, 2012

CONSUMER AND GOVERNMENTAL AFFAIRS BUREAU

NOTICE OF COMMISSION’S IMPLEMENTATION OF PROCEDURE

OF SERVING PARTIES IN AN ELECTRONIC FORMAT

By this Public Notice, the Consumer and Governmental Affairs Bureau (“CGB”) provides notice
of the Commission’s implementation of a revised procedure for it to provide service of copies of orders,
pleadings, and other documents to parties to a docketed proceeding when required by statute or
regulation. Henceforth, that service will be made in an electronic format, rather than by mail. This
procedural change is made pursuant to Section 1.47 of the Commission’s Rules, as amended in 2011.1
By Report and Order released on February 4, 2011,2 the Commission revised portions of its Part 1
practice and procedural rules and its Part 0 organizational rules to improve the efficiency of Commission
decision-making and modernize the agency’s processes in the digital age.3 Among other things, the
Commission amended Section 1.47 to allow the agency to serve parties to a proceeding in an electronic
format (e.g., e-mail or an Internet-based notification system such as an RSS feed). The amended rule also
provides, in proceedings involving large numbers of parties, that the Commission may now satisfy its
service obligation by issuing a public notice that identifies the documents required to be served and
explains how parties can obtain copies of the documents.4 A note to the revised rule states that staff will
decide the appropriate format for electronic notification in a particular proceeding, and that the
Commission expects that service by public notice will be used only in proceedings with 20 or more
parties.


1 The Commission’s procedures regarding service to parties joined to undocketed proceedings is not affected by this
Public Notice.
2 Amendment of Certain of the Commission’s Part 1 Rules of Practice and Procedure and Part 0 Rules of
Commission Organization
, Report and Order, 26 FCC Rcd 1594 (2011).
3 Id. at 1594-95, para. 1.
4 Id. at 1604, para. 22. Section 1.47(a) provides: “Where the Commission or any person is required by statute or by
the provisions of this chapter to serve any document upon any person, service shall (in the absence of specific
provisions in this chapter to the contrary) be made in accordance with the provisions of this section. Documents that
are required to be served by the Commission in agency proceedings (i.e., not in the context of judicial proceedings,
Congressional investigations, or other proceedings outside the Commission) may be served in electronic form. In
proceedings involving a large number of parties, and unless otherwise provided by statute, the Commission may
satisfy its service obligation by issuing a public notice that identifies the documents required to be served and that
explains how parties can obtain copies of the documents.” The Note to paragraph (a) states: “Section 1.47(a) grants
staff the authority to decide upon the appropriate format for electronic notification in a particular proceeding,
consistent with any applicable statutory requirements. The Commission expects that service by public notice will be
used only in proceedings with 20 or more parties.”

In this Public Notice, CGB provides notice that, in docketed proceedings with fewer than 20
parties, we will commence service of documents by RSS feed. Effective thirty days after publication of
this Notice in the Federal Register, the Commission will discontinue mailing paper copies of documents
that were previously served to parties in certain types of proceedings. Such parties should make the
necessary arrangements so that they can obtain documents via RSS feed. Instructions on how to
subscribe to an ECFS RSS feed may be found at
http://fjallfoss.fcc.gov/ecfs/userManual/search/how_to_use_rss.jsp.
Accessibility Information. To request materials in accessible formats for people with disabilities
(Braille, large print, electronic files, audio format), send an e-mail to fcc504@fcc.gov or call the
Consumer and Governmental Affairs Bureau at (202) 418-0530 (voice), (202) 418-0432 (TTY).
Additional Information. For further information, contact Deborah Broderson of the Consumer
and Governmental Affairs Bureau, at (202) 418-0652, Deborah.Broderson@fcc.gov.
By the Acting Chief, Consumer and Governmental Affairs Bureau
– FCC –
2

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