Phone industry declares war on San Francisco

The mobile phone industry has decided that it hates a new law, designed for the hippies of San Francisco, which means that they are not allowed to radiate the ears of users until their heads bleed.

The city, which is buying itself time until an earthquake drops it, like a modern day Atlantis, into the Pacific, decided that it would be “like really cool” to make the mobile phone industry put stickers on their products saying how much radiation they make.

According to Ars Technica, San Francisco mayor Gavin Newsom is a little surprised that the mobile phone companies are putting such a downer on his cunning plan and are suing his gentle town into a coma.

He was  disappointed that the association representing the wireless communication industry were being such bread heads and challlenge his landmark consumer information law in court.

Under the law,  each phone had to show the Specific Absorption Rate (SAR) of these gadgets somewhere next to the sample device. But the industry is not  impressed with Newsom’s pushback that all the city is doing is publicising the FCC’s SARs data.

It argues that since there is no proof that using a mobile phone microwaves you kid’s brains to a peanut it is wrong to give them the idea that more radiation means more brains turning to fudge.

CTIA Vice President John Walls said that the FCC has already established a safety ceiling on SARs (1.6 W/kg) and determined that all cell phones must comply with its rules.Then there is the small matter of the iPhone which has a higher radiation limit the more functions you use and where it is on the body at the time.

It can range from a mild 0.521 through to a mighty cook an egg 1.388 W/kg .But CTIA’s legal action is not based on any science.  It is actually using Article Six of the United States Constitution, the Supremacy Clause, to back the FCC’s final authority on this issue.

Basically,  it is claiming that the FCC ruling is a “regulatory field reserved exclusively to and occupied exclusively by the federal government” and so San Francisco’s can’t make these sorts of rules.

The next weapon in the CTIA’s case claims that San Francisco’s  law  conflicts with federal law by “challenging, directly or indirectly, the FCC’s determination that all FCC-compliant wireless handsets are safe.”Not sure if there is much mileage in this one.

Putting stickers with the radiation levels on them is not claiming that the FCC levels are unsafe, just giving consumers a choice how much they want to be radiated.