Recently, we told you how unlocking iPhones and other phones was going to become illegal after Saturday. Well, it is now illegal and if you want to help make it permanently legal, you’ll have to sign a petition that has been started at WhiteHouse.gov.
Late last year, the Librarian of Congress issued a DMCA notice that announced unlocking phones is illegal, but provided a 90-day exemption period for the people. That period ended on January 26th, so now it has become illegal to unlock iPhones or any phone for that matter, without the permission from the official carrier. You can only unlock the iPhone if you get permission from your carrier, and you require permission even if your contract has ended. Of course, you could buy a factory unlocked iPhone and use it with the carrier of your choice, but then it becomes expensive.
If you want to help make unlocking phones legal in the United States, then you’ll have to help pass this petition. The petition asks the Obama Administration to reconsider the DMCA act that made unlocking phones illegal and make it permanently legal. Below is the petition:
WE PETITION THE OBAMA ADMINISTRATION TO:
Make Unlocking Cell Phones Legal.
The Librarian of Congress decided in October 2012 that unlocking of cell phones would be removed from the exceptions to the DMCA.
As of January 26, consumers will no longer be able unlock their phones for use on a different network without carrier permission, even after their contract has expired.
Consumers will be forced to pay exorbitant roaming fees to make calls while traveling abroad. It reduces consumer choice, and decreases the resale value of devices that consumers have paid for in full.
The Librarian noted that carriers are offering more unlocked phones at present, but the great majority of phones sold are still locked.
We ask that the White House ask the Librarian of Congress to rescind this decision, and failing that, champion a bill that makes unlocking permanently legal.
To sign the petition, head over to this website and sign up to submit your signature. About 100,000 signatures are needed by February 23rd to pass the petition. Right now, about 19,000 signatures have been submitted, so that’s around 81,000 more to reach the goal.
Do you want to have the freedom to unlock your iPhone or any other phone, then go sign the petition now!