i3 - March/April 2018 - 34

Policy

By Julie Kearney

I N N OVAT I O N I N ACT I O N

Maureen
Ohlhausen,
FTC Chairman

 A 

t CES 2018, CTA President and CEO Gary Shapiro
joined Acting Federal Trade Commission (FTC)
Chairman Maureen Ohlhausen for a candid conversation.
They discussed the role of the FTC as the U.S. regulatory agency
that covers a broad range of activities, from occupational licensing
to consumer privacy. Few other agencies have as diverse a portfolio. Acting Chairman Ohlhausen created the term "regulatory
humility," or "recognizing the inherent limitations of regulation
and acting in accordance with those limits." Acting Chairman
Ohlhausen was sworn in as a Commissioner of the Federal Trade
Commission in April 2012, and was designated to serve as Acting
FTC Chairman by President Donald Trump in January 2017.

Q Let's start with net neutrality. Can you

talk about the FTC role and how it has
changed in the last month?
A Absolutely. The Federal Trade Commission
has a dual mission to promote competition
and to protect consumers. Net neutrality
and some of these issues are about if the
consumer is getting what was promised
to them in their internet
service. When I was head of
the Office of Policy Planning
at the commission, I headed
up the internet access taskforce. I have been working
on these issues since 2006,
and in 2007 we issued
a unanimous bipartisan
report from the FTC talking
about how the FTC, with
our consumer protection
powers and our anti-trust
powers, can help ensure that consumers have
competition and that promises are met.
The FTC also has a common carrier exemption in our statute. And when the FCC reclassified broadband as a Title II service - that's
a common carrier service - it divested the
FTC of authority. From the advent of the internet until 2015, the FTC played an active role in
enforcement of this area and policy thinking.
Now that the Open Internet Order has been
put out, this authority is going to come back

to the FTC. One of the things that the Open
Internet Order has that is really important is
this requirement of transparency. That ISPs
are going to need to provide information
about how they manage traffic and if they
don't meet those promises, the FTC can bring
in enforcement action. The FTC and FCC
signed a memorandum of understanding
in December to talk about
how we're going to divide up
these obligations.

Between
privacy and data
security cases,
we have brought
more than
500 cases.

34

MARCH/APRIL 2018

Q We have essentially four

telecom companies.
Is there anything we can do
with the FTC or otherwise
to get more competition
in broadband?
A I've really seen this incredible explosion in broadband
speeds. When we go back
to looking at the FTC report that came out
in 2007, the speed that people considered
broadband is the speed wireless providers are
providing today. As we see, broadband is not
just available through fixed wired broadband,
but wireless is really coming in. The introduction of 5G, as well. We're going to see a lot
more availability of broadband but also technology becoming better at using the spectrum - the broadband that's available. So one
of the things we've seen is that we are creating

new services too so there is increasing need
for it. When you talk about broadband competition in the U.S. you need to include all these
sources of useful broadband for consumers.
So the wireless companies need to be part of
that. The wired companies, and there might
be new innovations down the road which
some of your members are going to provide
us with new ways to get broadband.

Q Are cars communicating with each

other using the internet to avoid a collision
considered more important in terms of
prioritization than perhaps downloading
something from Netflix?
A I would certainly consider it more important. I also think that transmitting real time
health data - can be a very, very important
use so you can see all these health and safety
uses that we certainly would want to have
priority for them to be delivered. The FTC
did a workshop in 2017 about autonomous
and connected cars and we had NHTSA as
part of it because the security and the safety
of it is going to be a very big part of moving
into this future, as is privacy. At the FTC,
we are looking at the privacy and the consumer privacy area but the security and
the safety role is very important as well.

Q We've been talking about privacy.

Can you talk about the FTC's role and
what's happening there?
A The FTC is the nation's privacy protection
agency. Between privacy and data security
cases, we have brought more than 500 cases,
including one just yesterday involving connected toys. This was an enforcement action
I T I S I N N O VAT I O N



Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of i3 - March/April 2018

Contents
i3 - March/April 2018 - Cover1
i3 - March/April 2018 - Cover2
i3 - March/April 2018 - Contents
i3 - March/April 2018 - 2
i3 - March/April 2018 - 3
i3 - March/April 2018 - 4
i3 - March/April 2018 - 5
i3 - March/April 2018 - 6
i3 - March/April 2018 - 7
i3 - March/April 2018 - 8
i3 - March/April 2018 - 9
i3 - March/April 2018 - 10
i3 - March/April 2018 - 11
i3 - March/April 2018 - 12
i3 - March/April 2018 - 13
i3 - March/April 2018 - 14
i3 - March/April 2018 - 15
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i3 - March/April 2018 - 17
i3 - March/April 2018 - 18
i3 - March/April 2018 - 19
i3 - March/April 2018 - 20
i3 - March/April 2018 - 21
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i3 - March/April 2018 - 34
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i3 - March/April 2018 - 49
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i3 - March/April 2018 - 52
i3 - March/April 2018 - Cover3
i3 - March/April 2018 - Cover4
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http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/manifest/i3_20170506
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