wifi hotspotYou might recall that the Marriott hotel recently got into some hot water with the FCC when they decided to block the personal hotspots of their guests, which ultimately forced guests to pay for the hotel’s exorbitant WiFi fees. Marriott later backed down in their decision, but it seems that their earlier move was one not appreciated by the FCC at all.

To that extent the FCC has recently announced that they will now be “aggressively investigating and acting against” hotels that engage in such behavior, which is the blocking of personal WiFi hotspots. Marriott had previously argued that it was for security purposes and even tried to appeal to the FCC to allow the blocking in their meeting and convention rooms, all of which were ultimately and thankfully denied.

According to the FCC’s statement, “No hotel, convention center, or other commercial establishment or the network operator providing services at such establishments may intentionally block or disrupt personal Wi-Fi hot spots on such premises, including as part of an effort to force consumers to purchase access to the property owner’s Wi-Fi network. Such action is illegal and violations could lead to the assessment of substantial monetary penalties.”

Now if you know any hotel or convention center that is blocking the use of personal hotspots, the FCC wants you to get in touch with them to file a complaint. More information on this can be found in the statement released by the FCC.

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