The Unlocking Consumer Choice and Wireless Competition Act was passed by a vote of 295-114 late Tuesday, despite opposition from former supporters over recent changes.
To begin with the bill was considered weak because it didn't make permanent changes to the DMCA; rather, it would allow the Library of Congress to review the issue in another 18 months and perhaps declare phone unlocking illegal yet again.
To make matters worse, after the bill passed through the House Judiciary Committee, sponsors added language that would prohibit bulk unlocking of phones, making any sort of electronics recycling impossible.
Activist Sina Khanifar wrote, "The EFF, Public Knowledge, iFixit, as well as Rep. Eschoo, Rep. Lofgren and others, have come out in opposition to the bill over the last few days. Unfortunately, because of the last-minute change made to the bill up for a vote in the House, I have to join them. I encourage legislators to vote against H.R. 1123, and push for Congress to return to considering Rep. Lofgren’s H.R. 1892, which would make unlocking cell phones and other electronics fully legal."
If the bill is signed into law, it would provide some protection for individuals looking to unlock their phones; however, that protection may be short lived.
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Read More [via InfoWorld]