The Federal Communications Commission has released its ruling in a case involving Continental Airlines and the Massachusetts Port Authority. In July, the airline filed a petition with the agency after Massport ordered it to take down a Wi-Fi access point at its “President’s Club” frequent-flier lounge in Boston’s Logan International Airport, citing violations of Continental’s lease.
According to the FCC, the lease terms were “unreasonably” prohibitive. Massport, it said, had no right to make that instruction because the airline observed rules concerning on-the-air reception devices, or OTARD: the antenna was within the prescribed standards on measurement, use and location.
In a statement accompanying FCC’s 23-page decision, Democratic Commissioner Michael Copps said the ruling “clarifies that American consumers and businesses are free to install Wi-Fi antennas under our OTARD rules–meaning without seeking approval from their landlords–just as they are free to install antennas for video programming and other fixed wireless applications.”
Naturally, Continental welcomed the decision and called it a “resounding victory to the airline and for consumers.” Massport, on the other hand, was disappointed with the news, adding that it is now mulling its options, including pursuing further legal action.