Apple CEO Tim Cook (left) is one of an increasing number of corporate leaders who’ve been speaking out on controversial social issues. Taking a stand is critical for a chief executive, he has said, because “silence is the ultimate consent.” Columnist Gael O’Brien looks at what’s behind this trend and where it may go from here.
When a Google engineer recently wrote and distributed company-wide a memo about women in technology, intense controversy followed. Columnist Gael O’Brien says situations like the one at Google should prompt more companies to ask some critical questions: What does community mean for us? What do we want it to look like and why? What will enable our efforts to be successful and sustainable?
Facebook has long let users see all sorts of things the site knows about them, like whether they enjoy soccer, have recently moved, or like Melania Trump. But the tech giant gives users little indication that it buys far more sensitive data about them – detailed dossiers obtained from commercial data brokers – regarding their income, the types of restaurants they frequent and even how many credit cards are in their wallets.
ICE officials have invited tech companies, including Microsoft, to develop algorithms that will track visa holders’ social media activity.
“B-Corp” is a certification awarded by the non-profit B Lab to for-profit companies which meet rigorous standards of social and environmental performance, accountability and transparency.
Decisions in recent legal cases are fueling debate about whether the First Amendment’s protection of commercial speech could undermine the FDA’s ability to prevent drug marketing abuses.