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FCC Seeks Comment on Wi-Fi Network Management

Some major hotel and real estate operations, including Marriott, want the FCC to clarify just how they can manage their Wi-Fi networks.

Last month Marriott agreed to pay $600,000 to settle FCC allegations that it has improperly blocked mobile hotspots at the Gaylord Opryland Hotel and Convention Center in Nashville. Marriott employees used a monitoring system to identify and prevent individuals from connecting to the Internet via their own Wi-Fi nets, while charging consumers, businesses and exhibitors up to $1,000 per device to access Marriott's own Wi-Fi network.

But separately last August, Marriott, joined by the American Hotel and Lodging Association and Ryman Hospitality properties, asked the FCC for either a declaratory ruling that it was allowed to manage its Wi-Fi on-premises network as it saw fit or, in the alternative, to open a rulemaking on the issue.

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Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.