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Busy Technology Week for Congress

Congress is back for just one week, but is still handling a healthy dose of technology work in the Lame Duck hearings.

Tomorrow, The Energy and Commerce Committee will hold a hearing on self-driving cars as apart of its Disruptors Series. Rep. Michael C. Burgess (R-Texas), the Chair of the Subcommittee on Commerce, Manufacturing, and Trade, is holding the hearing, which will be preceded by self driving car demos by Tesla Motors, BMW Group, and Audi of America, Inc. on Capitol Hill. "Members will explore the potential impact of self-driving cars on driver and roadway safety and how this emerging technology could improve mobility, increase vehicle efficiency, and create new opportunities including economic growth and transportation access for the disabled and underserved communities," according to a release.

Congress is also set to have two technology hearings on Wednesday. The House Committee on Energy and Commerce will hold a meeting regarding last month's massive cyberattack against Dyn, a domain name system (DNS) provider. The hearing will be jointly held by the Subcommittee on Communications and Technology Chaired by Rep. Greg Walden (R-Ore.) and the Subcommittee on Commerce, Manufacturing and Trade Chaired by Burgess. "Next week's hearing provides our members with an opportunity to learn more about the recent cyberattacks, how cyberattacks are evolving and what can be done to mitigate future attacks and risks," Walden and Burgess said.

In the Senate, the Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation Chaired by Sen. John Thune (R-S.D.) will hold a Wednesday hearing to examine the emergence, benefits, and implications of augmented reality technologies. John Hanke, the CEO of Niantic, the company that developed Pokemon Go, will be a witness on the panel.

On Thursday, Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) presides over another hearing on self-driving cars in the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Transportation.

There's no word yet on a Yahoo Data Breach hearing. A number of lawmakers have called for Law Enforcement probes and Congressional action on the matter, including Sens. Mark Warner (D-Va.) and Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.). House Judiciary Committee Ranking member Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) has said he wants a Judiciary hearing on the matter. Judiciary Chairman Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) is open to a hearing, but hasn't yet committed.

The Internet Association, a Trade Association representing major tech companies like Amazon, eBay, and Google penned a letter to President-Elect Donald Trump Monday. The letter outlined suggestions that the technology industry has for the Trump administration when he takes office. The 12-page letter spanned policy recommendations on issues like STEM education, patent reform and encryption issues. Donald Trump has not addressed many tech policy issues yet, but when he has, he's taken positions unpopular with tech interests.

CLICK HERE to read the 12 page (PDF) letter.

COPYRIGHT OR COPYWRONG?: The Computer and Communications Industry Association (CCIA) and the Consumer Technology Association (CTA) voiced their concerns on internet service providers' responsibility for users who infringe copyright laws in an amicus brief today to the U.S. Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals. The groups argued that Cox was wrongly held liable for not policing Internet content. The case involves Cox Communications, which was hit with a $25 million penalty, after a Judge found it liable for illegal music downloads by its customers. "It is critical in a democracy that juries and our legal system correctly follow existing copyright law on secondary liability," CCIA President & CEO Ed Black said. "U.S. copyright law is balanced with liability protections for companies to respond quickly to infringement without resorting to policing all online sharing and commentary for copyright infringement. We value free speech and what it represents and it would be unwise to abandon that principle and balance for extremist copyright enforcement measures."

TRADE WAR(NING): China will retaliate "tit-for-tat" if President-Elect Donald Trump seeks to start a trade war, according to the Chinese Communist Party-controlled newspaper, The Global Times. "A batch of Boeing orders will be replaced by Airbus," the Global Times wrote. "US auto and iPhone sales in China will suffer a setback, and US soybean and maize imports will be halted."

Unsurprisingly, investors were not pleased by this. Traders unloaded Apple shares, causing the stock to fall by 2.5%, double the average S&P 500 loss on Monday.

Curious about what Obama regulations Trump could change? The Hill details 14 of them, including net neutrality.

Click Here to read the details.

NYC Wins When Everyone Can Vote! Michael H. Drucker

NYC Wins When Everyone Can Vote! Michael H. Drucker


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Busy Technology Week for Congress


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