Good Morning Tech

Senators debate update to ECPA. At a hearing in front of the Senate Judiciary Committee on Wednesday lawmakers discussed a long-overdue update to the 1986 Electronic Communications Privacy Act, which protects citizens against law enforcement monitoring or intercepting their electronic communications. Critics argue the bill is badly outdated thanks to the proliferation of the Internet and mobile devices equipped with electronic messaging capabilities. Committee chairman Patrick LeahyPatrick Joseph LeahySenate Judiciary squares off over John Lewis voting rights bill Senate Democrats introduce legislation to strengthen Voting Rights Act 92 legal scholars call on Harris to preside over Senate to include immigration in reconciliation MORE (D-Vt.), one of the original author's of ECPA, vowed to take up the issue during the lame-duck session of Congress.

Zuckerberg to drop $100 million on Newark schools. Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg is expected to announce the creation of a new foundation with the goal of helping schools in Newark, New Jersey this week using $100 million of Facebook stock. Zuckerberg has spent the last year meeting with officials in the education field and developed a relationship with Newark Mayor Corey Booker. Republican Governor Chris Christie has also promised reform of Newark's schools, which have been under state control since the 1990s. The announcement is scheduled for Friday on the Oprah Winfrey show.

Scheduled. The FCC's open meeting is scheduled for 10:30am.


The Senate Commerce Committee is holding a hearing at 10am in Russell Senate office building on the need for a nationwide public safety network. Scheduled witnesses include Houston Mayor Annise Parker and San Jose, California Police Chief Robert Davis.

Also at 10am the NSA chief General Keith Alexander will appear before the House Armed Services Committee at Rayburn House office building to give an update on the standing up of U.S. Cyber Command, which Alexander commands.

Cartoon or commercial? The FCC is examining whether a new animated series aimed at children on Nicktoons is actually a commercial for Skechers shoes in disguise. The advocacy group Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood filed a complaint with the Commission alleging the series "Zevo-3", which is set to debut on October 11 is nothing more than an extended promotional vehicle for Skechers shoes. The complaint notes the three main characters were all developed as brand ambassadors for Skechers and notes that one of the heroes defeats their arch-nemesis the evil Dr. Stankfoot by passing out a pair of Skechers Airators.

Watercooler. Next time you hear your favorite lawmaker struggle to define net neutrality, it's worth remembering that lawmakers have never been known for their affinity for the latest technology. TechPresident's Nancy Scola points to this gem from 1930, when the Senate actually considered banning dial telephones from the Capitol in favor of manual phones. Supporters of the measure were angered by some younger Senators' preference for the dial tone.