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CTIA sues San Francisco to block radiation warning law

updated 05:35 pm EDT, Fri July 23, 2010

Carriers sue San Fran, say FCC has authority

The CTIA on Friday sued the city of San Francisco in a bid to stop a mandatory radiation warning law. The carrier-run organization claims that the city is overstepping its boundaries and that only the FCC has the "exclusive and comprehensive" authority to determine how radiation is displayed. The CTIA insisted that San Francisco's decision to show the SAR radiation levels for all phones was misleading, as it gave the impression certain phones were safer without definitive scientific proof.

As the FCC assumes that every phone below a certain SAR level is safe, there wouldn't be any safety advantage to opting for a phone with lower levels, the CTIA claimed. San Francisco has argued the law isn't to actively deter customers but to let those concerned about radiation get quicker access to information than a website or after the sale.

The lawsuit is somewhat contradictory for the CTIA, as it has routinely denied that the FCC doesn't have authority to manage network neutrality or many other aspects that would increase the level of competition. Both the FCC and FDA have said that current data doesn't prove that cellphones can trigger cancer or other ill effects, but studies like Interphone have also had incomplete data.

by MacNN Staff



  1. Geoduck

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Very Ambivalent On This

    On one hand I think the CTIA is right. This is the FCC's jurisdiction. The last thing the industry needs is to have every local politician who wants to be seen as protecting their voters passing laws about things they know nothing about because it sounds like they are doing something good. It would be bad for the industry and bad for consumers.

    On The Other Hand I'm seeing lots of 'experts' saying contradictory things. I don't know if the transmissions are damaging or not.

  1. testudo

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Re: Very ambivalent

    On The Other Hand I'm seeing lots of 'experts' saying contradictory things. I don't know if the transmissions are damaging or not.

    Well, most of the 'experts' that say there is issues is usually based more on anecdotal evidence or small group of subjects. Very little has been done with a large group of people over a long period of time (mainly because it's hard to find people who've used cell phones for 20 years).

    And if it's bad for your brain, what is it doing to your hips/groin (when it's in your pocket)? And what does bluetooth do to your brain while your trying to keep yourself 'healthy' by using a headset?

    Then again, for the likes of the CTIA, if they want to wait until there is proof, will they use the "But the FCC said not to require labels, so don't sue us!" defense when they get sued?

    And like with the Global Warming debate, if you wait for 'definitive' proof, have you waited too long?

  1. WinstonCourt

    Joined: Dec 1969


    What do I smell cooking?

    Everyone does realize that the frequencies of radio waves which are used by cell phones have many of the same qualities as those frequencies of radio waves your microwave oven uses, right? And, among those qualities is the quality to cook food, or specifically meat! Although the power levels that phones emit are only a small fraction of the power levels used in microwave ovens, I would personally consider it nice to know the levels the phones are emitting. And, yes, those levels might influence my purchases of phones. One example would be, in the city with easy access to cell towers, why not go with the lowest possible emission levels and worry about my health. However, if I lived in a remote location I would have to accept higher levels and use a bluetooth device to keep the phone away. But yes, I think the cell makers should have the radiation levels available for their phones. If not a sticker right on the phone, then the phones documentation should contain these specifications. And, there should be standards in play, so one phone can be compared against another in a meaningful way. As, I would highly suspect that cell manufacturers would want to play games with these figures. But, figure it out for yourself. The cost of cell phone manufacturers to provide this data would amount to a penny or two per phone, so why are they so loath to provide the data? And, yes, I do know there are federal regulations which set allowable levels. Having been involved in industries utilizing various levels of radio frequencies in the microwave bands, I am also aware that these levels of radiation allowed are MUCH TOO HIGH, in my opinion. And, maybe cooking your head will cause cancer, maybe it won't, and once your head is cooked, maybe you won't care. ROFLOL

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