FCC Notice for Further Proposed Rulemaking

Yes, I did read the whole thing last night.

Read page 97: Appendix D, part II, section A:

A. User Identifying Information 1. Residential Users
8. We propose that VRS providers provision for each of their residential users, upon default provider registration, information sufficient to identify that user, including, at a minimum, their name and residential addresses. We seek comment on this proposal, and on whether additional user identifying information, such as a unique user ID, TND, customer profile info (i.e., information that would fall under section 64.404(c)(7) of the Commission’s rules), should be gathered from users to facilitate the database functions described above.
9. We propose that each VRS user registered in the VRSURD be assigned a unique user identification to facilitate the administration of the TRSBPP and the VRS program. We seek comment on this proposal, on the form that this unique identifier should take, and the standards and practices associated with assigning and managing such a unique user ID.

This really is the most disturbing thing to me. In order to obtain VRS service, you will need to have your name and address stored in a central government database. Your broadband provider would populate the database stating that you are eligible for VRS, and you would "elect" a VRS provider to be your default provider. You also get a government assigned unique id number for this database.

The federal government then knows, accurately, that you are deaf/HoH, that you speak ASL fluently, your name, your address, which broadband provider you use, your default VRS provider, and your phone number.

There are many other things in here I'm not fond of either: things like only having "free" compensation for one default provider, complications of enterprise VRS customers and how they might be (or not be) compensated, and more specifically the device requirement that deaf videophones must now talk to the central database in a protocol that makes deaf videophones now "special", and thus different and non-functionally-equivalent to hearing videophones which can no longer be bought inexpensively off-the-shelf and used as VRS videophones.

I'm more interested to hear what everyone else has to say. It will likely take a week for me to have responses to the hundreds of questions asked in this document (literally: count the question marks).
 

RickL66

Member
Jared, but perhaps, this may help the low-income Deaf people afford HSI so they can have/use VRS services at home rather than replying on public VRS phones?

We propose that the VRSURD be provisioned with information sufficient to allow VRS providers, the TRS Fund Administrator and, as necessary, broadband providers providing discounted services under the TRSBPP to effectively identify the services provided to each VRS user.
 
Jared, but perhaps, this may help the low-income Deaf people afford HSI so they can have/use VRS services at home rather than replying on public VRS phones?

RickL66,

I am not Jared.

I'm not sure that many deaf/HoH citizens could really afford to pay VRI rates for video interpreting services if it weren't for the TRS fund, low-income or not. In reality, the VRS industry wouldn't exist were it not for the TRS fund paying for expensive interpreter time for everyone.

As for the "last mile" broadband/internet problem, that's why the FCC has altered the purpose of the Universal Service Fund: it is this fund that is supposed to be helping all Americans obtain cheap/affordable broadband by subsidizing the price.

You might also want to look Project Endeavor, the CSD BTOP program: BTOP « CSD
 

Talentedhands

New Member
The link is an excellent resource for the VRS industry to implement the latest standard protocol per FCC's request. As far as I know, ZVRS (also known as CSDVRS) is already ahead of other all VRS providers in that area.
 
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