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Recycling Industry Applauds Signing of Cell Phone Unlocking Bill into Law

WASHINGTON, DC, Aug. 4, 2014 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- The Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries (ISRI), the Voice of the Recycling IndustryTM called President Obama's signing of the Unlocking Consumer Choice and Wireless Competition Act (S. 517) a victory not only for recyclers, but consumers and the environment. The new law allows recyclers and refurbishers to bulk unlock used cell phones for refurbishment and resale.

"We are very pleased that the legal right for recyclers and refurbishers to bulk unlock cell phones has been restored," said ISRI President Robin Wiener. "Copyright law should not stand in the way of advances in the legitimate reuse of cell phones and tablets or prevent innovations and competitive uses for such devices."

Previously, electronics manufacturers and telecommunication carriers wielded the power of copyright to control access to information necessary to unlock, refurbish and resell used technological devices. When the House passed its version of the bill allowing unlocking, it prohibited bulk unlocking by recyclers and refurbishers - only granting consumers access - discouraging proper repair and reuse of devices. ISRI and its members then worked with the House and Senate Judiciary Committees to include recyclers and refurbishers in the final version of the legislation signed by the President. The new law now removes the competitive disadvantage to recyclers and refurbishers in the marketplace.

Last October, the ISRI Board of Directors approved a cellphone unlocking policy that called for allowing consumers, including recyclers and refurbishers, the right to lawfully unlock technological devices. By allowing bulk unlocking, recyclers and refurbishers are able to put valuable and working devices back into the domestic and global marketplace where there is a strong demand. This Act is consistent with ISRI's policy.

ISRI serves as the largest organization representing electronics recyclers with nearly 400 member companies that handle electronics at more than 675 locations throughout the U.S. and around the world. It also partners with Earth911 on the initiative Project Reboot to educate consumers on the importance of electronics recycling.

The Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries, Inc. (ISRI)

The Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries, Inc. (ISRI) is the Voice of the Recycling Industry(tm). ISRI represents more than 1,600 companies in 21 chapters nationwide that process, broker and industrially consume scrap commodities, including metals, paper, plastics, glass, rubber, electronics and textiles. With headquarters in Washington, DC, the Institute provides safety, education, advocacy, and compliance training, and promotes public awareness of the vital role recycling plays in the U.S. economy, global trade, the environment and sustainable development. For more information about ISRI, visit www.ISRI.org.

CONTACT: Mark Carpenter MarkCarpenter@isri.org (202) 662-8525Source:Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries