FCC penalizes hotel for interfering with Wi-Fi - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

FCC penalizes hotel for interfering with Wi-Fi

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The Federal Communications Commission has fined a Marriott hotel for interfering with guests' Wi-Fi access.

FCC investigators were looking into whether the Gaylord Opryland Hotel and Convention Center in Nashville, Tenn. used their own Wi-Fi network to knock other users mobile hotspots off-air.

Investigators found this was the case, and that hotel was charging users as much as $1000 to access their network instead. This would constitute a violation of an FCC ruling.

“Consumers who purchase cellular data plans should be able to use them without fear that their personal Internet connection will be blocked by their hotel or conference center,” said Enforcement Bureau Chief Travis LeBlanc. “It is unacceptable for any hotel to intentionally disable personal hotspots while also charging consumers and small businesses high fees to use the hotel's own Wi-Fi network. This practice puts consumers in the untenable position of either paying twice for the same service or forgoing Internet access altogether,” he added.

Marriott, which owns the hotel in question, will pay $600,000 in civil penalties. They will also be subject to closer monitoring by the FCC.

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