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Captioning items, VoIP, new CGB service, CAC

To: Consumer Contact List
From: Karen Peltz Strauss, RERC-TA
Re: Consumer Contact List - Misc.items related to captioning, VoIP service, new CGB service, CAC
Date: June 3, 2005

1. Certain VoIP Providers Required to Provide E-911 Service.

On May 19, 2005, the FCC approved an order to require VoIP providers whose services connect to the public switched telephone network (PSTN) to offer E-911 service to individuals as a mandatory feature of their service within 120 days. Part of this obligation includes a mandate for interconnected VoIP providers to provide emergency personnel with the call back number of their customers in case these operators need to return a call for emergency assistance. This ruling has significance for people with disabilities who use text or video to communicate over the Internet. Consumers believe that the same guarantees for voice access need to be extended to text and video access. The Public Notice and Commissioner statements follow (the Order itself has not yet been released).

COMMISSION REQUIRES INTERCONNECTED VOIP PROVIDERS TO PROVIDE ENHANCED 911 SERVICE.
The FCC took steps to protect consumers by requiring that certain providers of VOIP phone service supply enhanced 911 (E911) emergency calling capabilities to their customers as a mandatory feature of the service.. News Release. (Dkt No 04-36, 05-196). Adopted: 05/19/2005. News Media Contact: Mark Wigfield at
(202) 418-0253, Mark.Wigfield@fcc.gov WCB. Contact Christi Shewman at
(202) 418-1686
<http://hraunfoss.fcc.gov/edocs_public/attachmatch/DOC-258818A1.doc>
<http://hraunfoss.fcc.gov/edocs_public/attachmatch/DOC-258818A2.doc>
<http://hraunfoss.fcc.gov/edocs_public/attachmatch/DOC-258818A3.doc>
<http://hraunfoss.fcc.gov/edocs_public/attachmatch/DOC-258818A4.doc>
<http://hraunfoss.fcc.gov/edocs_public/attachmatch/DOC-258818A5.doc>
<http://hraunfoss.fcc.gov/edocs_public/attachmatch/DOC-258818A1.pdf>
<http://hraunfoss.fcc.gov/edocs_public/attachmatch/DOC-258818A2.pdf>
<http://hraunfoss.fcc.gov/edocs_public/attachmatch/DOC-258818A3.pdf>
<http://hraunfoss.fcc.gov/edocs_public/attachmatch/DOC-258818A4.pdf>
<http://hraunfoss.fcc.gov/edocs_public/attachmatch/DOC-258818A5.pdf>
<http://hraunfoss.fcc.gov/edocs_public/attachmatch/DOC-258818A1.txt>
<http://hraunfoss.fcc.gov/edocs_public/attachmatch/DOC-258818A2.txt>
<http://hraunfoss.fcc.gov/edocs_public/attachmatch/DOC-258818A3.txt>
<http://hraunfoss.fcc.gov/edocs_public/attachmatch/DOC-258818A4.txt>
<http://hraunfoss.fcc.gov/edocs_public/attachmatch/DOC-258818A5.txt>
* * * * *

2. FCC Fines Additional Broadcasters for Lack of Emergency Access

The FCC has issued Notices of Apparent Liability for 3 Washington, D.C. Metropolitan area stations for failing to provide visual access to emergency programming during a thunderstorm/tornado watch in the D.C. area on May 25, 2004. The stations are to be held liable for the following amounts:

Fox - $16,000

WJLA- $8,000

NBC Telemundo - $16,000

The URLs are listed below:

ACC LICENSEE, INC., LICENSEE OF WJLA-TV. Proposed NALF in the amount
of $8,000 against ACC Licensee, Inc., licensee of WJLA-TV, Washington, D.C., regarding making emergency information accessible to persons with hearing disabilities (Closed Captioning Rules). Action by: Acting Chief, Enforcement Bureau. Adopted: 05/25/2005 by NALF. (DA No. 05-1511). EB
<http://hraunfoss.fcc.gov/edocs_public/attachmatch/DA-05-1511A1.doc>
<http://hraunfoss.fcc.gov/edocs_public/attachmatch/DA-05-1511A1.pdf>
<http://hraunfoss.fcc.gov/edocs_public/attachmatch/DA-05-1511A1.txt>

NBC TELEMUNDO LICENSE CO, LICENSEE OF WRC-TV. Proposed NALF in the amount of $16,000 against NBC Telemundo License Co, licensee of WRC-TV, Washington, D.C., regarding making emergency information accessible to persons with hearing disabilities (Closed Captioning Rules). Action by: Acting Chief, Enforcement Bureau. Adopted: 05/25/2005 by NALF. (DA No. 05-1512). EB
<http://hraunfoss.fcc.gov/edocs_public/attachmatch/DA-05-1512A1.doc>
<http://hraunfoss.fcc.gov/edocs_public/attachmatch/DA-05-1512A1.pdf>
<http://hraunfoss.fcc.gov/edocs_public/attachmatch/DA-05-1512A1.txt>

FOX TELEVISION STATIONS, INC., LICENSEE OF WTTG-TV. Proposed NALF in the amount of $16,000 against Fox Television Stations, Inc., licensee of WTTG-TV, Washington, D.C., regarding making emergency information accessible to persons with hearing disabilities (Closed Captioning Rules). Action by: Acting Chief, Enforcement Bureau. Adopted: 05/25/2005 by NALF. (DA No. 05-1513). EB
<http://hraunfoss.fcc.gov/edocs_public/attachmatch/DA-05-1513A1.doc>
<http://hraunfoss.fcc.gov/edocs_public/attachmatch/DA-05-1513A1.pdf>
<http://hraunfoss.fcc.gov/edocs_public/attachmatch/DA-05-1513A1.txt>

3. FCC Denies Closed Captioning Exemptions

On May 23, 2005, the FCC rejected two requests for exemptions from its closed captioning rules: one made by Cathedral of Praise for its program, "Overcoming Faith Television," and the other made by Living Word Bible Church for its program, "Word For Winners." Each station had asserted that its program was a locally produced and distributed non-news program with no repeat value, which qualifies for an exemption under the FCC's rules. However, the FCC's ruling explains that this exemption was "intended to apply only to a limited class of truly local materials, including, for example, local parades, local high school and other nonprofessional sports, live unscripted local talk shows and community theatre productions. Moreover, the Commission concluded that the programming in question would have to be locally created and not networked outside of the local service area or market of a broadcast station." According to the FCC, neither of the stations supported its contention that the scope of its program related only to local issues or that the program was truly local. The stations are permitted to re-file and submit this supporting documentation. See the attached orders.

CATHEDRAL OF PRAISE VIDEO PROGRAMMING ACCESSIBILITY PETITION FOR WAIVER OF CLOSED CAPTIONING REQUIREMENTS. Denied the Petition. Action by: Deputy Chief, Policy Division, Media Bureau. Adopted: 05/23/2005 by MO&O. (DA No. 05-1489). MB
<http://hraunfoss.fcc.gov/edocs_public/attachmatch/DA-05-1489A1.doc>
<http://hraunfoss.fcc.gov/edocs_public/attachmatch/DA-05-1489A1.pdf>
<http://hraunfoss.fcc.gov/edocs_public/attachmatch/DA-05-1489A1.txt>

LIVING WORD BIBLE CHURCH VIDEO PROGRAMMING ACCESSIBILITY PETITION FOR WAIVER OF CLOSED CAPTIONING REQUIREMENTS. Denied the Petition. Action by: Deputy Chief, Policy Division, Media Bureau. Adopted: 05/23/2005 by MO&O. (DA No. 05-1488). MB
<http://hraunfoss.fcc.gov/edocs_public/attachmatch/DA-05-1488A1.doc>
<http://hraunfoss.fcc.gov/edocs_public/attachmatch/DA-05-1488A1.pdf>
<http://hraunfoss.fcc.gov/edocs_public/attachmatch/DA-05-1488A1.txt>

ADDENDA: THE FOLLOWING ITEMS, RELEASED MAY 23, 2005, DID NOT APPEAR IN DIGEST

4. FCC Launches New E-mail Service to Keep Consumers Informed

The FCC's Consumer and Governmental Information Bureau has started a new method of keeping consumers informed about telecommunications issues. By clicking on the link in the attached notice ("FCC e-mail service"), you will be brought to a form that will allow you to subscribe (for free) to this service. You will then be asked about the issues on which you wish to receive information. Several of the options include matters related to disability access.

FCC LAUNCHES NEW E-MAIL SERVICE TO DELIVER TIMELY AND CUSTOMIZED COMMUNICATIONS INFORMATION TO SUBSCRIBERS. News Release. News Media Contact: Rosemary Kimball at (202) 418-0511, email:
Rosemary.Kimball@fcc.gov CGB. Contact Roger Goldblatt at (202) 418-1035
or Kelly Jones at (202) 418-7078
<http://hraunfoss.fcc.gov/edocs_public/attachmatch/DOC-258976A1.doc>
<http://hraunfoss.fcc.gov/edocs_public/attachmatch/DOC-258976A1.pdf>
<http://hraunfoss.fcc.gov/edocs_public/attachmatch/DOC-258976A1.txt>

5. FCC Adds Additional Members to its Consumer Advisory Committee

The FCC has added an additional 20 members to its Consumer Advisory Committee (CAC), including 9 additional members representing disability interests. This brings the number of CAC members to 55. The first meeting of this new panel will be held on Friday, June 10, 2005, in the FCC's meeting room.

Released: 05/26/2005. ADDITIONAL MEMBERS NAMED TO CONSUMER ADVISORY COMMITTEE. (DA No. 05-1323). CGB. Contact: Scott Marshall at (202)418-2809, email: Scott.Marshall@fcc.gov, TTY: (202) 418-0179
<http://hraunfoss.fcc.gov/edocs_public/attachmatch/DA-05-1323A1.doc>
<http://hraunfoss.fcc.gov/edocs_public/attachmatch/DA-05-1323A1.pdf>
<http://hraunfoss.fcc.gov/edocs_public/attachmatch/DA-05-1323A1.txt>


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