Week in Review

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DOJ approves Verizon spectrum deal, government finalizes off-shore drilling rules, and more.

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  • The Justice Department approved a deal struck by Verizon Wireless to purchase spectrum from the country’s largest cable operators.
  • Government regulators issued a final set of safety rules for offshore drilling, modifying a series of emergency measures put in place after the 2010 Gulf Coast oil spill.
  • A federal appeals court said Google Inc. can appeal the granting of class status to thousands of authors in a lawsuit over digital books. See related The Regulatory Review essay.
  • The Chair of the U.S. House of Representative’s Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, Darryl Issa (R-CA), issued a report criticizing the Obama administration’s approach to increasing gas-mileage standards for automobiles.  A few days later, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration announced a temporary delay in issuing the new fuel economy standards.
  • The Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that the police do not need a warrant to collect cell phone location data, and that users have no reasonable expectation of privacy in their data transmissions when traveling with a phone.
  • Case of a medical technician who allegedly spread hepatitis C across U.S. led to calls for more stringent regulation of patient care.
  • Australia’s highest court upheld a law that prohibits tobacco companies from using their logos on cigarette packets.