Hastings Communications and Entertainment Law Journal


Matthew Eller


This article will examine the turbulent history of section 629 of the Telecommunications Act, including its adoption and amendments, its claims as to "plug & play" devices, and the effects of the recent EchoStar Satellite LLC v. FFC holding. This article will begin with a brief history of section 629 and its proposed purpose, then discuss the industry's first attempt at industry-wide standards-first with CableCARD technology, then its successor, AllVid technology. This article will then analyze the purpose and history of the FCC's ancillary jurisdiction, the holding in the newly decided EchoStar Satellite LLC v. FCC, and the possible future consequences of the Echostar decision as to other pending cases in the DC Circuit.