AfterDawn: Tech news

It is now illegal to unlock your phone unless your carrier says it's okay

Written by Andre Yoskowitz (Google+) @ 27 Jan 2013 9:19 User comments (18)

It is now illegal to unlock your phone unless your carrier says it's okay As of this morning, it is now illegal to unlock your phone in the U.S., unless your carrier authorizes it.
The rule was put in place last year by the Library of Congress, which can amend the Digital Millennium Copyright Act.

Reads the rule (via CNet):
...with respect to new wireless handsets, there are ample alternatives to circumvention. That is, the marketplace has evolved such that there is now a wide array of unlocked phone options available to consumers. While it is true that not every wireless device is available unlocked, and wireless carriers' unlocking polices are not free from all restrictions, the record clearly demonstrates that there is a wide range of alternatives from which consumers may choose in order to obtain an unlocked wireless phone.


Since there are so many unlocked options now, the Library says there should be little reason to unlock your own carrier-purchased devices.

Not all is lost, however, as any phone purchased before today is still okay to be unlocked with no repercussions.

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18 user comments

127.1.2013 10:11

What a bunch of BS.............

227.1.2013 10:33

O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave!



327.1.2013 10:56

Everyone will just buy an unlocked phone on the internet so the carriers will be losing money.No big deal.


20 Year U.S.Army Veteran.Vietnam 1969-1972 101st Abn.Div.

427.1.2013 11:14

Good luck with that enforcement.

527.1.2013 15:30

God bless Amurica.


*\\\****//\\\***//\\\*****
**\\\**//**\\\*//**\\\*******
***\\\//****\\\ ****\\\****

627.1.2013 18:19

Originally posted by JST1946:
Everyone will just buy an unlocked phone on the internet so the carriers will be losing money.No big deal.
Is that sarcasm, or a joke in some way? I doubt the bulk of the public that carry a smart phone even knows the difference between locked or unlocked, or has even bothered to question it. Even if they did, they'd probably choose the "cheaper" subsidized option of the locked phone anyway.
Hold on, I need to take a piss but have to check with my corporate sponsor first.
This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 27 Jan 2013 @ 18:20

727.1.2013 18:46

It says its illegal to unlock it in the US. So just go overseas and get it unlocked? Or did I understand that wrong?

This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 27 Jan 2013 @ 18:48

827.1.2013 19:01

USA is GAY!!!
I am glad I don't live there.
Too many idiotic rules that make no sense.
People should be allowed to do what they want with their phones because (WE) are paying for them.
And remember.....I said USA is GAY
Not the people.
So all you patriotic nutjobs get a hold of yourself :)

927.1.2013 19:16

Originally posted by Justoneguy:
Originally posted by JST1946:
Everyone will just buy an unlocked phone on the internet so the carriers will be losing money.No big deal.
Is that sarcasm, or a joke in some way? I doubt the bulk of the public that carry a smart phone even knows the difference between locked or unlocked, or has even bothered to question it. Even if they did, they'd probably choose the "cheaper" subsidized option of the locked phone anyway.
Hold on, I need to take a piss but have to check with my corporate sponsor first.
I guess your making an assumption the majority of the public is stupid.It wasn't a joke or sarcasm either.It doesn't make much difference to me either way.I can buy as many unlocked phones as I want and just give them away.I can buy any type of phone in the Philippines and use any carrier that I want also.All of the phones that they sell there are unlocked in any of the stores that sell them.Be careful not to piss on your leg either.

20 Year U.S.Army Veteran.Vietnam 1969-1972 101st Abn.Div.

1027.1.2013 19:39

Originally posted by JST1946:
Originally posted by Justoneguy:
Originally posted by JST1946:
Everyone will just buy an unlocked phone on the internet so the carriers will be losing money.No big deal.
Is that sarcasm, or a joke in some way? I doubt the bulk of the public that carry a smart phone even knows the difference between locked or unlocked, or has even bothered to question it. Even if they did, they'd probably choose the "cheaper" subsidized option of the locked phone anyway.
Hold on, I need to take a piss but have to check with my corporate sponsor first.
I guess your making an assumption the majority of the public is stupid.It wasn't a joke or sarcasm either.It doesn't make much difference to me either way.I can buy as many unlocked phones as I want and just give them away.I can buy any type of phone in the Philippines and use any carrier that I want also.All of the phones that they sell there are unlocked in any of the stores that sell them.Be careful not to piss on your leg either.
I wasn't making the assumption the majority of the public was stupid, just that they probably didn't care to find out, and would choose the cheaper option short term. I also didn't mean any offense toward you, so I hope I didn't come off that way.

1127.1.2013 22:43

No offense taken.No problem.It takes a lot to get me offended.


20 Year U.S.Army Veteran.Vietnam 1969-1972 101st Abn.Div.

1227.1.2013 22:43

No offense taken.No problem.It takes a lot to get me offended.


20 Year U.S.Army Veteran.Vietnam 1969-1972 101st Abn.Div.

1327.1.2013 23:37

Here's the thing. This DMCA BS addendum-"law" actually screws the carriers.

People everywhere need to know that contract phones literally are now a thing of the past. It was a pointless fad that makes no sense anymore.

From this point forward the simple solution to this pointless law is to buy cellphones that are not carrier-specific. CDMA is pretty exempt because they usually aren't worth the trouble to unlock. But factory-unlocked GSM phones can EASILY be had for lower prices than subsidized carrier-locked options.

So I say screw it, eventually everyone will learn that there is no point in signing a contract.

1428.1.2013 4:01
T-Bean
Unverified new user

Verizon has a market on this. They have the best signals, but they suck as far as being fair. Am I misunderstanding something if I disagree with "The Library says there should be little reason to unlock your own carrier-purchased devices"? Am I hearing that I can get an unlocked phone as long as I buy one, but can't unlock my existing phone? I have a semi-dumb (I've dropped options) phone which I don't plan to give up right away and commit to a plan with a Verizon $350 drop fee and have to buy all new accessories, and insure it, plus, the $50 they throw as a bonus, will be $20 after they take out the new $30 service fee. My question is why is the Lib of Congress getting involved with communist phone plans? Really, how much freedom do we have have anymore? Everything has a catch. I'm so tired of it. I feel like going back to a landline, but I won't have the safety of a phone nearby.

1528.1.2013 6:11

Hardly a day goes by when I am not ashamed of my government...but in a way I would almost support this if it came from the supreme court and not from the library of congress that has no constitutional power to rule on anything. One of the few powers the federal government is granted by the states is the obligation to uphold contracts. If a contract states that you may not unlock a phone then it should be considered a breech of contract.



1628.1.2013 13:34

Violates "Fair use" in my humble yet expert and totally right on opinion!!

If I pay money for a phone......especially if I buy it OUTRIGHT......I will do with that phone as I please, and to all those that try to "enforce"......F YOU!!

This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 28 Jan 2013 @ 14:06

1729.1.2013 13:17

What a stupid law, and how the hell are they going to implement it ? it's like passing a law that says you can only wipe your arse with your left hand. LMAO

1829.1.2013 13:37

Originally posted by Jimathome:
What a stupid law, and how the hell are they going to implement it ? it's like passing a law that says you can only wipe your arse with your left hand. LMAO

like this
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Aq-G4HATiC8

Playstation 2-Free McBoot,HDloader 8.0c,Open PS2 Loader 0.7,80gb Maxtor HDD,SMS Media Player,PGen,SNES Station- Installed
GameCube-SDload,SD Card Adapter,BBA Adapter,2 Color Case,GnuboyGX,MPlayer- Installed

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