Emergency Alerts

News & Analysis as of

Keep Calm and Broadcast On: Broadcasters as Hurricane First Responders

While some debate endlessly which content best serves the public interest, there is universal agreement that the content broadcasters air during emergencies is vital to their communities. Whether it comes in the form of...more

Hoping to Avoid Website Crash, FCC Urges EAS Participants to Stagger Filings

The FCC has sent an email to those registered in the EAS Test Reporting System (“ETRS”) for tomorrow’s nationwide test, asking them to (1) stagger the filing of their EAS Form Two based on their time zone, and (2) not file...more

Nationwide EAS Test Now Just One Month Away

As the summer winds down and the weather cools off, action around the Emergency Alert System (“EAS”) is heating up. Hopefully by now, if you are an EAS participant, which includes all cable television systems, radio...more

FCC Allows for Greater Use of Robo-Calls By School Districts

The Federal Communication Commission (FCC) has issued a ruling that clarifies the application of the Telecommunications Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) to schools to allow automated calls and texts to parents in the case of...more

FCC Holds Educators and Utilities Making Certain Robo Calls Do Not Violate The TCPA

On August 4, 2016, the FCC released a Declaratory Ruling confirming that schools and utilities making robo calls do not violate the TCPA under certain circumstances. The Ruling, addressed Petitions filed by Blackboard, Inc....more

FCC Exempts Schools and Utilities from TCPA for Emergencies

On August 4, 2016, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) issued a ruling applicable to schools and utilities regarding the application of the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) to robocalls and text messages to...more

FCC Ruling Clarifies TCPA for Schools and Utilities

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has issued a Declaratory Ruling clarifying the application of the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) to communications from schools and utilities. Specifically, the Ruling...more

Nationwide EAS Test Comes With a “To Do” List for Broadcasters and Other EAS Participants

Those trying to keep up with the news surrounding the upcoming nationwide test of the Emergency Alert System (“EAS”) know that a lot has been happening in a short period of time. Below, we pull together the many recent FCC...more

EAS Test Reporting System Deadline Fast Approaching

All Emergency Alert System (“EAS”) Participants must complete EAS Test Reporting System (“ETRS”) Form One on or before August 26, 2016. This would include all cable television systems, TV stations, radio stations and low...more

Alert: Deadlines Set for Commenting on New EAS Cybersecurity Requirements

Comments on the FCC's proposal to require participants in the nation's Emergency Alert System (EAS) to meet new cybersecurity requirements are due by May 9, 2016, and reply comments are due by June 7, 2016. As we previously...more

Proposed EAS Rules Mark a Greater Role for New Media Platforms and Increased Importance for Social Media in Delivering EAS Alerts

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) released a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (“NPRM” or “Proposed EAS Rules”) in January, proposing improvements to the Emergency Alert System (“EAS”) and Wireless Emergency Alerts...more

Alert: FCC Proposes Cybersecurity Requirements for Broadcasters and MVPDs

The Federal Communications Commission has proposed rules requiring all participants in the nation's emergency alert system ("EAS") to implement certain cybersecurity risk management practices. The proposed rules could apply...more

The Top Six Things You Need to Know About the Internet of Things: A Legal Perspective

IoT is discussed in the media more and more frequently. It has important social, economic and legal implications, most of which are yet to be fully understood. The following sets out a brief list of things you should...more

FCC Modifies Cost Recovery Rules for Medical Device Tests and Proposes Greater Access to MedRadio Bands for Testing

On July 6, 2015, the Federal Communications Commission (“FCC”) adopted a Memorandum Opinion and Order modifying its rules covering Experimental Radio Service (“ERS”) licenses, which permit research and testing of radio...more

New Requirements Regarding Emergency Alert Access Imposed On Device Manufacturers And MVPDs

On May 28, 2015, the FCC released a Second Report and Order and Second Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking pursuant to authority granted by the Twenty-First Century Communications and Video Accessibility Act of 2010 (CVAA)...more

FCC Releases Emergency Information Accessibility Rules for Second-Screen Devices and Grants Compliance Waivers

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has released the text of its Second Report and Order (R&O) adopting rules requiring multichannel video programming distributors (MVPDs) to pass through the secondary audio stream...more

FCC Expands Emergency Alert Access Obligations for Equipment Manufacturers and MVPDs

Late last week, the FCC released a Second Report and Order and Second Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking imposing additional emergency alert accessibility obligations on both device manufacturers and multichannel video...more

BlackEnergy Malware Highlights Special Confidentiality Considerations in Critical Infrastructure Breach Investigations

On October 29, 2014, Department of Homeland Security’s Industrial Control Systems Cyber Emergency Response Team (“ICS-CERT”) published an important alert regarding a particularly destructive advanced persistent threat (“APT”)...more

The Employer’s Reference Guide to Information About Ebola

Concerns related to the Ebola outbreak are increasing among both employers and employees in the United States. The outbreak is currently most active in the West African nations of Guinea, Liberia, Nigeria, and Sierra Leone....more

DOT Issues Emergency Order For Transport Of Crude Oil From Bakken Shale Region (UPDATE)

On May 23, 2014, the Department of Transportation’s Federal Railroad Administration clarified its May 7, 2014, Emergency Order Regarding Notification to Communities of Bakken Crude Oil Shipments through the release of...more

FCC Proposes Fines of More Than $1.9M for EAS Violations

On March 3, 2014, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) issued an omnibus Notice of Apparent Liability (NAL) that proposes substantial fines totaling more than $1.9 million against Viacom, ESPN and NBCUniversal (the...more

FCC Adopts New Rules for Accessibility of Emergency Information in Video Programming

On April 9, 2013, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) established requirements for the video description of emergency announcements presented on-screen during TV programs, so that the blind and visually impaired can...more

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