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Unlocking Cellphones Becomes Illegal Saturday in the U.S.

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posted on Jan, 25 2013 @ 10:57 AM
This reeks of "Cronyism" to me.

"You want the features of "our" phone/device, you have to pay whatever we feel like charging you to use it on our service".

I see less clandestine Gov surveillance and more backdoor/undertable kickbacks and payoffs...just my opinion though.

posted on Jan, 28 2013 @ 05:01 PM
reply to post by ArchPlayer

Unlocking Cellphones Becomes Illegal

It's not legal to mandate what people can and cannot do with their own personal property.

And it's certainly not within federal jurisdiction.
edit on 28-1-2013 by ErtaiNaGia because: (no reason given)

posted on Jan, 28 2013 @ 05:02 PM
reply to post by pillock

The cell providers are mostly selling these phones @ cost or below cost.

The failure of their business model is not our problem.

posted on Jan, 28 2013 @ 10:27 PM
Is it really 'illegal' in the sense that we will be fined and/or jailed or 'illegal' in the sense that your carrier will be able to deny you a warranty (meaning you'll have to pay for it to be serviced, etc)?

Pre-post edit, I found this midway through this post so wanted to give that answer:

The penalties for unlocking a subsidized wireless phone without carrier consent can be severe. Civil penalties are based on the carrier’s actual damages and any additional profits of the violator, or a court can award statutory damages of not less than $200 or more than $2,500 per individual act. Criminal penalties are even more severe: any person convicted of violating section 1201 willfully and for purposes of commercial advantage or private financial gain (1) shall be fined not more than $500,000 or imprisoned for not more than 5 years, or both, for the first offense; and (2) shall be fined not more than $1,000,000 or imprisoned for not more than 10 years, or both, for any subsequent offense.

Also, remember that most of the time when you get your phone you are getting it under a contract stating you won't unlock it. When you sign that contract and getting a locked phone you are paying a subsidized price for having it locked, otherwise you can pay more for an unlocked phone. Once you spend those two years on that contract the carrier (at least AT&T, Verizon apparently will do it at the start of your contract) you can have them unlock the phone for you. You won't have a price decrease, but you will be able to use that phone on other carriers where the contract price will be cheaper. When that contract ends on a subsidized phone, that's when it's actually yours and not the carriers (as you're paying it off during the contract).

A simple solution to this law is to buy an unlocked phone, as the reason this is no longer being exempt from DMCA is because unlocked phones are so easy to come by now. Also it is unfair that people buy the unlocked phones on contract for $200, unlock it for free and then sell it for $600+. You can still jailbreak your iPhone or do whatever other modding. You just can't unlock it from one carrier to another, unless of course you bought the phone before the exemption ran out.

Honestly, I can't see anything too terrible with this. You can still do stuff to your phone after you buy it. If it being locked and illegal to unlock yourself is a problem then go with an unlocked one.

Now if they were going to make jailbreaking illegal, then I'd have a problem with it.

posted on Jan, 28 2013 @ 10:31 PM
reply to post by muzzleflash

Look at land; unless you have the patent on it, try not paying property taxes...

They will come take your house and kick you out....Even if it's been in your family for decades, bought and paid for...

posted on Jan, 29 2013 @ 07:06 PM
reply to post by muzzleflash

Agreed, we are slaves many don't realize it. The minute you use money, you are a slave. We don't own anything, we never did and never will.

Now its cellphones, what will be next? Your children? Your arm and leg? No one is and no one can stop them.

posted on Jan, 29 2013 @ 07:19 PM
Congrats all you young, hip, occupy, young libs!
this is who you voted for!

posted on Jan, 29 2013 @ 07:26 PM
Are there truly that many features enabled from unlocking your phone?

I was late to the smartphone scene, and so wowed by my skyrocket, that I didn't find a need to risk bricking it by attempting to unlock.

So many things I can do with this as is. Just wondering why people find the need to unlock it?

As for the law, pfff, I don't recognize this as a law. It's against my conscience as a matter of principal.

If the people choose not to obey the law on principal, then the authorities can't enforce it. It becomes realized as a pseudo-law.

Heck, think I'm going to mess with it and unlock the damned thing just because.

Freaking ridiculous.

posted on Feb, 27 2013 @ 04:05 AM
A White House petition to make unlocking cell phones legal again has passed 1 lakh signature . Passing the milestone means the U.S. government has to issue an official response. On January 26th, unlocking a cell phone that is under contract became illegal in the U.S Just before that went into effect , a petition was started at to have the Librarian of Congress revisit that decision. 'It reduces consumer choice, and decreases the resale value of devices that consumers have paid for in full. The Librarian noted that carriers are offering more unlocked phones at present, but the great majority of phones sold are still locked,this can be done using any third party vendors .i have come across a site called where unlock codes can be obtained for free for most of the basic models but this is not applicable for smart phones .The policy is a big issue for anyone who wants to use their phone abroad, without needing to go through their U.S.' carrier's expensive roaming and international plans. Additionally, anyone who wants to move to a new GSM carrier in the U.S. (such as T-Mobile to AT&T), will have issues.

posted on Feb, 27 2013 @ 05:22 AM
This is absurd. So the law will protect big business and make the average citizen pay more. So we need to create more garbage and chuck one phone when switching carriers instead of using it as long as possible. I will unlock my phone as many times as I damn well please. It is my property.

This also makes me lose respect and faith in our laws/ legal system.

You will not make me pay more. Period.

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