Posts Under: policy

DeVos Hearing Lacking Education Technology

President-elect Donald Trump’s nominee for Secretary of Education, Betsy DeVos, faced a tough lineup of Senators at her confirmation hearing on Tuesday evening. The heated, partisan questioning primarily focused on DeVos’ beliefs on school choice/privatization, accountability, and civil rights and her financial contributions to education reform groups. Unfortunately, education technology was not a topic addressed directly by DeVos or by any of the Committee’s members.

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Postal Regulatory Commission Launches Postal Rate Review

Today, the Postal Regulatory Commission (PRC) initiated its long-awaited review of the postal rate system for regulating rates and classes of mail.  This review was ordered by the Postal Accountability and Enhancement Act, enacted in 2006, establishing the rate cap system we have experienced over the last ten years.  Pursuant to that legislation, the PRC is required to review the current system to determine whether the current system is achieving the objectives established by Congress. If the PRC finds that the objectives, taking into account various factors, are not being met, it has the authority to either propose rules that modify the system or adopt an alternative system to achieve the objectives.

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SIIA Holds Panel to Assess Benefits, Challenges, & Policy Implications of the Internet of Things

On Friday, June 17th, SIIA hosted a panel that was co-sponsored by the Congressional High Tech Caucus and the Congressional Internet of Things Caucus on assessing the benefits, challenges, and policy implications of the Internet of Things. SIIA has been active on the topic of IoT in recent months both filing comments to NTIA and releasing a white paper on the subject.  David LeDuc, SIIA’s Senior Director for Public Policy gave opening remarks where he said SIIA defines the “Internet of Things” as ubiquitous connectivity where people are not only interacting with their devices, but devices are also interacting with each other. He also touched on the importance of regulatory humility cautioning against an overarching policy framework for IoT to accommodate IoT’s complex ecosystem. The panel consisted of representatives from GE Digital, Qualcomm Inc., and the Center for Data Innovation.  Each panelist touched on both public and private sector oppor ...

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Data Flows and the Surveillance Debate: Let's Have a Candid Discussion

Those of you who read SIIA blogs, statements, and testimony know that we are big proponents of data-driven innovation.  For such innovation to achieve its full potential, cross-border data flows are essential.  That is why we support Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) digital provisions so strongly and consider them a floor for additional digital provisions in the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) and Trade in Services Agreement (TISA).  We support interoperability mechanisms such as the EU-US Privacy Shield that allow companies to transfer data from one jurisdiction to another as long as they comply with the rules established in the mechanism.  This has nothing to do with undermining societal values such as privacy and everything to do with creating law-based data transfer mechanisms as we demonstrated at an October 9, 2015 Geneva event for TISA negotiators.  We are strong supporters of the EU-US Privacy Shield because it has the potential, ...

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Support SIIA Nominations for ESSA Rulemaking Committee

The U.S. Department of Education is in the early stages of developing regulations for implementing the new Every Student Succeeds Act. As part of this process, the Department will convene a committee of stakeholders to develop negotiated rules on key pieces of the law, including assessments and supplement, not supplant rules.

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The Economist Supports Strong Encryption

Welcome news arrived over the holidays in the form of editorial support for strong encryption from the Economist magazine. The opinion piece entitled, When Backdoors Backfire, observes pointedly: “Without encryption, internet traffic might as well be written on postcards.” It concludes: “Rather than weakening everyone’s encryption by exploiting back doors, spies should use other means…That is harder and slower than using a universal back door—but it is safer for everyone else.”

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