Unlocking your phone: Petition started to make it legal

January 27, 2013
15

In case you've somehow missed the news over the past week or so, unlocking your smartphone to use on the carrier of your choice is now illegal. Even a phone you've purchased yourself. We can't do what we want with our own smartphone! Our coverage yesterday confirms just how bad of a taste that left in many of our readers mouths, so today we found a petition started to change the ridiculous law. More details after the break.

A quick edit to the DMCA (Digital Millennium Copyright Act) was put into place and as of yesterday unlocking a smartphone to use on another carrier is now illegal without the carriers consent and cooperation. This isn't for rooting, jailbreaking and custom ROMs, but the way in which an AT&T phone is unlocked to use internationally for a business trip, or to be used on T-Mobile.

Many people are upset with the new law, considering we should get to do what we want with our own devices we purchased with our hard earned (and taxed) dollars. Reports have arrived from TheNextWeb confirming that a petition has already been put into place to fight this petty law. The petition has been sent to the White House and we'll see how it goes.

Screen Shot 2013-01-27 at 12.07.39 PM

The White House Petitions website requires roughly 100,000 signatures before they even look to consider anything. The good news however, is the petition has only been online for about 3 days and already has over 21,000 signatures at this point. We have until the 23rd of February to get another 78k to reach the goal of 100,000 signatures. We should mention that even if the petition does get the required amount of signatures there's no telling anything will get done. We know the slow speed that the ol government works at anyways right? We know there's much more pressing things needing attention, but still. If you'd like to do more head to the site below to sign the petition and make carrier unlocking of locked smartphones legal again.

[via We the People]


Recent Stories
  • http://www.facebook.com/michaelgonzalez2012 Michael Gonzalez
    • Political_Poop

      Thanks for the link.

    • Derek_Checks

      There is a link right there… “[via We The People]”

      I am having trouble understanding this as I do not own a smart phone. What is it that ‘unlocking’ does, exactly?

      • http://www.facebook.com/michaelgonzalez2012 Michael Gonzalez

        It lets you buy a phone then use it on any carrier you want. So if I bought a phone I could take it to Sprint, or Verizon, or AT&T. The carrier wouldn’t be able to tell me which service I have to use the phone with.

      • Michael Liepshutz

        Except that cdma phones will not work on gsm networks and vice versa

      • http://www.facebook.com/michaelgonzalez2012 Michael Gonzalez

        Yes to be specific if your phone supports CDMA you must stick with those carrier types, which are Verizon Wireless, Sprint, MetroPCS, Cricket, and U.S. Cellular.

        If you are GSM your only choices are AT&T and T-Mobile

    • http://www.androidcommunity.com Cory Gunther

      um.. link was at the bottom, but thanks for the direct link

      • http://www.facebook.com/michaelgonzalez2012 Michael Gonzalez

        My bad I was looking everywhere for it so I thought I’d post for others to quickly find… :)

  • Yodaddy

    Repeal the DMCA. An onerous right destroying tyranny building pig of a law.

  • WeThePeople

    “We know the slow speed that the ol government works at anyways right? We know there’s much more pressing things needing attention, but still.”

    They found enough time to get this passed and it didn’t take them that long to do it. If they had time to pass it then they have time to repeal it. This is just another example that corporations control our government.

    • anon

      You’ve got that right. Even if this petition surpasses 100k signatures, whoever paid the government in the first place won’t let it be taken away.

  • tankslappa

    I know it is hard to believe, but this site is read widely outside the USA, and this ridiculous law only applies to the land of the “free”.

  • http://www.galaxyunlocker.com/blogs/galaxyunlocker Mark Galaxy

    I just voted. Everybody, let’s get this done. PLEASE VOTE

  • NMo9

    Why not just buy unlocked phones?? I always buy unlocked ones and never had issues with it..

  • Tim Kirkpatrick

    I petitioned with my money already and bought an unlocked Nexus 4 and use Straight Talk.