Sen. Doug Jones co-sponsors legislation to push back against FCC’s vote on net neutrality

January 17, 2018

By Chip Brownlee
Alabama Political Reporter

Sen. Doug Jones is picking his first fight in the U.S. Senate.

Jones’ office said Tuesday that he will be co-sponsoring legislation that would repeal the Federal Communication Commission’s recent policy change that did away with net neutrality protections. Those protections, sometimes referred to the open internet, required internet service providers, or ISPs, to treat all internet traffic equally and prohibited them from blocking, slowing down or discriminating against content on the internet.

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Alabamians lost over $7 million to cybercrime last year

November 24, 2017

By Brandon Moseley
Alabama Political Reporter

In 2016, Alabama residents lost $7,178,091 to internet crime, averaging $1,926.49 per person.

OpenVPN teamed up with a mathematician and statistician to publish a state-by-state study of cybercrime. The authors analyzed reports from the FBI and CSN in 2015 and 2016, concentrating on internet crime, fraud and identity theft. According to the FBI crime data, 47,077 Alabamians reported cybercrime in general, mostly women and people 50 – 69 years old.

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Stop and think before reposting

November 6, 2017

By Bill Britt
Alabama Political Reporter

Conspiracies both great and small have staked the political landscape since the dawn of human reason. Conspiracy implies a secret agreement between two or more people usually involving some dark intentions.

Reason, in plain speech, is a cause, explanation or justification for an action. As the Oxford Dictionary explains, “The power of the mind to think, understand, and form judgments logically.” However, to assume that individuals exercise good judgement in all situations is as silly as subscribing a grand scheme to every collaborative effort.

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David Carrington addresses Etowah County Republicans

October 24, 2017

By Brandon Moseley
Alabama Political Reporter

Saturday, Jefferson County Commissioner David Carrington addressed the Etowah County Republican Party in Rainbow City, Alabama, at the Western Sizzlin.

Carrington had previously announced that he was running for governor; but after incumbent Gov. Kay Ivey announced that she would seek a term, he announced that he would not be a candidate.  He also is not running for county commissioner again.

Carrington said that on the first day he was elected, Jefferson County had $3.2 billion in defaulted sewer debt and $105 million in general obligation debt that was also in default.

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Alabama Media Professionals host National Federation of Press Women in Birmingham

September 5, 2017

By Brandon Moseley
Alabama Political Reporter

The Alabama Media Professionals will be hosting the National Federation of Press Women’s Annual Conference in Birmingham on September 7, 8 and 9, 2017.

AMP President Mary Wimberley said in a statement, “It’s time! The National Federation of Press Women’s Annual Conference comes to Birmingham September 7-9. A team of Alabama Media Professionals members has worked toward this event since about 2014, beginning with Elaine Hobson Miller’s vision for AMP to be a host affiliate.”

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“What can the Internet do for us?”

June 22, 2017

By Joey Kennedy
Alabama Political Reporter

Congratulations to Josh Moon, my colleague at The Alabama Political Reporter, for taking a couple of journalism awards from the Alabama Associated Press Managing Editors group. Those aren’t Moon’s first awards, and they likely won’t be his last.

Showing nothing but class, Moon put the awards in the correct perspective: We (journalists) do give awards to each other. I’ve won my share, including a Pulitzer Prize and five best editorial column awards from the Alabama Press Association over the years.
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Instructional videos an excellent example of leadership

June 12, 2017

By Bill Britt
Alabama Political Reporter

It would not be a stretch to say that under the direction of Secretary of State John Merrill, the once sleepy office is now a bustling hub of information, innovation, and efficiency.

Beginning this month, State law will require all office holders, principal campaign committees, and political action committees that file with the Probate Judge’s Office, other than candidates for municipal office, to file campaign disclosure reports electronically with the Secretary of State.
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Public hearing on broadband bill renews debate on government influence in private businesses

April 13, 2017

Sam Mattison
Alabama Political Reporter

A bill that would expand municipal governments’ reach into broadband and internet services renewed a debate on government expansion into private enterprise at a committee meeting on Wednesday, April 12.

The House Committee on Commerce and Small Business was a packed house on Wednesday with some people even forced to stand in the back.

The main attraction at the committee meeting was a public hearing on House Bill 375 which would allow certain municipalities to increase government services into broadband and internet.
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Senator proposes bill to expand city internet service

March 28, 2017

By Chip Brownlee
Alabama Political Reporter

OPELIKA— Sen. Tom Whatley, R-Auburn, has proposed several bills to expand allow a public municipal utility provider, Opelika Power Services, to expand its internet service outside of the municipal jurisdiction of the city of Opelika.

Whatley has proposed three different bills this legislative session, one would allow the utility provider, owned and backed by the city of Opelika, to expand its services outside of Opelika. One version would allow it to expand into four counties surrounding Lee County. Current Alabama law doesn’t allow municipal service providers to expand beyond their municipal jurisdiction.

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Palmer Critical of FCC’s “Net Neutrality” Order

March 3, 2015

By Brandon Moseley
Alabama Political Reporter

On Monday, March 2, US Representative Gary Palmer (R-Hoover) released a statement in which he strongly disagrees with the Federal Communications Commission’s (FCC) “net neutrality” order and criticizes the rules as both an unnecessary and beyond the scope of power prescribed to the FCC by Congress.

Congressman Palmer said in a written statement, “The FCC’s ‘net neutrality’ erodes the authority of Congress. The FCC, an independent federal agency, does not have the authority to write laws, but in a 3-2 ruling has done just that. Moreover, as FCC Commissioner Ajit Pai pointed out in his dissenting statement, this order opens the door to taxing the internet, is likely to increase rates, and was previously rejected by the FCC, only to have it resurrected at the behest of the White House. Finally, by putting internet content under the thumb of federal bureaucrats, this ruling threatens free speech. This ruling cannot be allowed to stand.”
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