KCC told to hand over carriers’ calling plan files

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KCC told to hand over carriers’ calling plan files

The Seoul Administrative Court ruled in favor of a civic organization yesterday by ordering the Korea Communications Commission (KCC) to disclose materials related to how mobile carriers calculate their mobile phone calling plans.

The People’s Solidarity for Participatory Democracy filed the lawsuit in July 2011.

The court ordered the state-run telecommunications and broadcasting commission to hand over documents it received from local mobile carriers detailing how they calculated their business costs, including marketing and network repair expenses and how they determined their basic monthly rates.

The documents pertain to the carriers’ 2G and 3G calling plan services from 2005 to 2011, while those relating to the faster, 4G long-term evolution (LTE) network were not included.

The KCC was also ordered to disclose a number of internal documents evaluating its authorization of the mobile carriers’ conditions of use.

Last year, the civic group claimed the mobile carriers were charging excessively high rates and resorted to legal action that summer after the KCC in May declined its request to reveal the documents, citing its right to protect mobile carriers’ business secrets.

But in its recent ruling, the court conceded that the KCC should not have to disclose some materials containing trade secrets.

“We welcome the ruling to disclose information showing the basic costs of the calling plans, because the public has the right to know,” the group said in a statement.

“We will also ask the KCC to reveal documents that detail how mobile carriers set their calling plans for LTE cell phones. If the KCC rejects our request, we will again take the matter to court.”

By Kim Mi-ju [mijukim@joongang.co.kr]

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