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David McCabe May 9, 2017
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Court to reconsider case over FTC authority

Alan Diaz / AP

A federal court will reconsider its decision in a case that endangered the Federal Trade Commission's ability to regulate privacy at certain services owned by some internet providers. But, per the case's court order, "The three-judge panel disposition in this case shall not be cited as precedent by or to any court of the Ninth Circuit."

Backstory:

  • The court ruled last year that in most cases the FTC wasn't able to regulate any services offered by so-called "common carriers" — that's legalese for a small group of entities that includes telecom providers.
  • The decision was part of a case over FTC case against AT&T. Previously, the FTC was only unable to regulate the "common carrier" activities, like offering voice service, but could still police other unrelated services offered by the same companies.
  • Now, the full court will reconsider the ruling.