October 2, 2022
Photo: humanmade/iStock/Getty Images Plus
Good morning! Market rot is chipping away at Silicon Valley’s once-alluring veneer, proving that not even Big Tech will be spared from the downturn.
This week, Amazon executives were upbeat as they unveiled a slew of new hardware devices: “We want customers to enjoy the here and now — and I can tell you it’s working,” said division vice president David Limp.
The mood is less optimistic behind the scenes. Amid a broader effort to cut down on spending across Amazon, hiring in the device unit has slowed dramatically. Now, new hires can even have their offers revoked or opt for a job elsewhere in the company, like advertising, Protocol has learned.
The once-impenetrable fortress of tech is falling. And the crumbling is forcing employees to take new stock of their sector. Workers are finding out jobs they thought they had aren't there, beloved perks are on the chopping block, and money that was once earmarked for early retirement is now gone.
Now, industry leaders are left to grapple with the beast they created. And it’s somehow a surprise to them that after decades of insane perks, employees are pushing back on efforts to curtail those benefits.
Tech workers of a certain caliber still hold a lot of sway. But one of the tried-and-true routes to potential riches in the industry is evaporating; even in-demand technologists could soon find it hard to get a job.
There will always be tech roles available; perhaps increasingly so for people who specialize in growing fields like machine learning. But many in the industry, especially those early in their careers, have never experienced such an intense downturn in the market.The side dishes that helped make working in Big Tech a sustainable feast are increasingly off the menu. For some, it may even be time to take the jump to the stern, more responsible, East Coast brother of tech: finance. Time to bust out your suit, Silicon Valley.
Alibaba — a leading global ecommerce company — is a particularly powerful engine in helping American businesses of every size sell goods to more than 1 billion consumers on its digital marketplaces in China. In 2020, U.S. companies completed more than $54 billion of sales to consumers in China through Alibaba’s online platforms.
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Using economic multipliers published by the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis, NDP estimates that the ripple effect of this Alibaba-fueled consumption in 2020 supported more than 256,000 U.S. jobs and $21 billion in wages. These American sales to Chinese consumers also added $39 billion to U.S. GDP.
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