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Brandon, MS

magicJack 911 fees

Looks like Dan's "I provide phone service but I'm not a phone service provider" mantra is starting to unravel.

» ··· 11-fees/


Pen Argyl, PA
I guess you missed this post from yesterday huh?

»911 charges on the horizon????


Port Saint Lucie, FL
reply to Megamixer
magicJack should simply dump its 911 service. If they do they will be operationally similar to Skype.

1. Both offer free over internet calls by either using magicTalk 2 magicTalk or Skype 2 Skype using a computer.
2. magicJack offers a US phone number, while Skype users can pay an additional fee for a US phone number.
3. magicJack has out going calling to US+Canada, while Skype offers a subscription service for out going calling to US+Canada.
4. Skype licenses several phones that do not require a computer to run, while the magicJack device requires a computer. This makes magicJack a true computer based add on product.

If local governments want to play the game, so should magicJack. Who in their right mind would rely on magicJack or any VoIP service to provide 911 service. magicJack's 911 service is just marketing dressing because the majority of penny pinching customers will not run their computer 24 hours a day. If I were running magicJack I would not allow my customers to pay more on 911 fees than the cost of the service that my company offers. magicJack should just dump the 911 service and prorate the cost of providing the 911 service back to its current customers.

PX Eliezer70
Hutt River
These are excellent points.

However, the FCC (and Congress) are intent on pushing even stricter 911 regs. Some of this is already in the pipeline.

I think that SKYPE's free ride will be ending sooner or later.


Regarding MJ, I doubt that the feds would allow them to ditch 911. But more importantly, it would be a marketing and PR disaster if they did so. And current customers would sue!


Port Saint Lucie, FL
PX, I agree with you and I am sure that both the Feds and local governments are conjuring up new legislation that may apply to Skype but if you follow the US business market, large corporations often receive a favored status. My primary intent for this post was to demonstrate the discriminatory practice of selective enforcement. My fear is that the powers will regulate all the value out of VoIP that users currently enjoy and this will force many of us back to the corporate oppressors that many of us have left. I have posted some additional questions that I have about how the taxation and fee collecting will be handled. I am sure you and others may have additional questions on the application of fees and tax collection.

1. Will companies like Google Voice, Whistle Phone, IPKall, IPComms that offer a free service be responsible for collecting 911 fee, USF, etc?

2. Will foreign customers who purchase a US DID be responsible for USF fee and local taxes of the selected area code that they received?

3. Will companies like Local Phone and Rebtel be responsible for collecting USF fee and local taxes when terminating calls on US numbers?

4. Will all US citizens pay these fees even if the service is used outside of the US? What constitutes usage outside of the US(1 time,51/49 split)?

5. Will US citizens pay these fees if they select a foreign VSP to terminate calls to US phone numbers?

There seems to be lots of questions with very few answers at this point.


Bountiful, UT
reply to macman4hire
said by macman4hire:

magicJack should simply dump its 911 service.

This. I hate 911.


It has nothing to do with providing 911 serivce, it has all to do with the Government trying to take more than they need from all of us.

West Virginia, SUCK MY JACK!!!

reply to Megamixer
IMO 911 fees are not related to the cost of maintaining 911 service. They have become almost a general tax.

I welcome any and all VOIP companies that try to avoid as many FCC fees as possible.

It's been a few years since I had a phone bill, and I like it this way. I hope MagicJack is able to win, but the most likely result is customers will be assessed 911 fees (then later other fees).

The result will make VOIP less viable as an alternative to POTS or other VOIP like services from Verizon and AT&T.

At the moment, Skype, MagicJack and Google Voice are probably looking at being forced to pay some sort of 911 fee eventually. This will give a lot of money to government, but my guess is a lot will be used for non-emergency purposes.
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