FCC Seeks Comment on Petition for Limited Waiver of VRS Privacy Screen Rule

Comments due:  February 13, 2023 

Reply Comments due:  February 28, 2023

On January 12, 2023 the FCC released a Public Notice seeking comment on a Petition for Limited Waiver filed by Sorenson Communications, LLC (Sorenson), seeking waiver of the Video Relay Service (VRS) privacy screen rule.  The privacy screen rule requires a communications assistant to disconnect a VRS call if the caller or called party enables a privacy screen or similar feature for more than five minutes or is otherwise unresponsive for more than five minutes.  A privacy screen is a feature that prevents one party on the video leg of a VRS call from viewing the other party.  This rule was adopted to prevent fraudulent practices where VRS minutes were logged while no one was engaged in a conversation.  Sorenson seeks a waiver of the rule so that VRS users on video conferencing calls are allowed to turn off their video connections when not presenting or for other reasons not related to inactivity.

Interested parties may file comments by accessing the FCC’s Electronic Comment Filing System at https://www.fcc.gov/ecfs/filings.  All filings must reference CG Docket Nos. 03-123 and 10-51.  People with disabilities who need assistance to file comments online may request assistance by email to [email protected]

Public Notice:

URL:  https://www.fcc.gov/document/fcc-seeks-comment-petition-waiver-vrs-privacy-screen-rule      

Word: https://docs.fcc.gov/public/attachments/DA-23-28A1.docx     

PDF:   https://docs.fcc.gov/public/attachments/DA-23-28A1.pdf      

Text:   https://docs.fcc.gov/public/attachments/DA-23-28A1.txt     

Link to Sorenson’s Petition for a Limited Waiver:


General information about VRS is available at www.fcc.gov/vrs.  For further information, please contact William Wallace, Disability Rights Office, Consumer and Governmental Bureau, at 202-418-2716, or [email protected].  Individuals who use videophones and are fluent in American Sign Language (ASL) may call the FCC’s ASL Consumer Support Line at (844) 432-2275 (videophone).