Unlocking Petition Makes Legislative History

TechCrunch

Editor’s note: Derek Khanna is a technology policy consultant and columnist. He previously worked for the House Republican Study Committee where he authored their report on copyright reform. Hespearheaded the national campaign on cellphone unlocking that resulted in proposed legislation to legalize unlocking your phoneDerek regularly writes for The Atlantic, National Review and Forbes.

The Internet has helped bring down regimes, elect politicians, and stop lawmaking in its tracks, but until 2014 it has never directly led to legislation. On Friday, in the midst of the least productive Congress in history, that changed when legislators passed the “Unlocking Consumer Choice and Wireless Competition Act” as the direct result of an online petition.

This is the opening salvo of a new generation of e-activism leading to policy changes, one that can bypass the special interests who normally control the political process in Washington.

Understanding the significance…

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