September 27, 2022
Photo: David Ryder/Bloomberg via Getty Images
Good morning! Microsoft is focusing its efforts into policies that aim to clean up the grid, which would prove beneficial to tons of companies. And it’d be good for the Earth, too.
Microsoft has set some of the most aggressive climate goals in Big Tech. But its work has to go hand-in-hand with national and global policy changes for it to actually make a dent in carbon emissions, and the company isn't being shy about saying what that should all look like.
It isn't easy for companies like Microsoft to cut emissions. Though it ambitiously aims to reach carbon negativity by 2030, it saw a more than 20% uptick in emissions last year, mostly due to data center construction and an increase in customers.
So Microsoft is focused on cleaning up the grid, according to two new briefs it published last week. Those documents describe the policies that the company thinks would push decarbonization in the right direction.
Cleaning up the grid won’t just help Microsoft. “Policies that help decarbonize the grid could help make electricity more affordable,” Brian said. “Every company would reap benefits, to say nothing of the climate (which we shouldn’t lose sight of).”
— Nat Rubio-Licht
Gov. Gavin Newsom (surprisingly) knocked down California’s Digital Financial Assets Law last week. Crypto enthusiasts are cheering, but efforts to reel in crypto aren’t over yet, my colleague Ben Pimentel reports.
The crypto industry needs better consumer protections, according to proponents of the bill. Opponents, meanwhile, worried that implementing the law would be too complicated and expensive.
But efforts to police the crypto industry don’t end with this bill. Ben said we may see crypto critics find other avenues to address concerns in the field outside of legislative action.
— Sarah Roach
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.
Though Dreamforce is primarily a Salesforce show, Slack certainly made its voice heard this year. And its biggest takeaway? Businesses should cut down on meetings.
Slack itself is trying to cut back on meetings, with company-wide no-meeting Fridays and Maker Weeks, where the company cancels all internal recurring meetings for a week. Salesforce also picked up this practice after it acquired Slack last year.
But policies to cut down on meetings can’t be one-size-fits-all. One Slack exec told Protocol’s Lizzy Lawrence that these programs “need people to pilot them and experiment with them” to figure out what works, which should then guide how policies are adapted to fit what works for individual teams.
Terraform Labs co-founder Do Kown insists that he's not in hiding despite being on Interpol’s red notice list:
South Korea science minister Lee Jong-Ho said the country passed legislation to better compete with other countries for chip dominance:
Netflix established another internal games studio in Helsinki. Marko Lastikka, who was most recently at Zynga Helsinki, will lead it.
Stellantis and Uber are partnering with Free2Move to focus on EVs in France. Uber's trying to convert half of its fleet of vehicles in the country to EVs.
Sebastien Giroux and Greg Strickland joined Productboard as CFO and COO, respectively. Giroux comes from Collibra, and Strickland is a former Box and Periscope Data exec.Jon Vlassopulos is Napster’s new CEO. Vlassopulos is Roblox’s former global head of music.
The U.K. may fine TikTok $29 million after regulators found problems with how the platform handles children’s data.
Meta wants to make it easier to switch between Facebook and Instagramthrough new account management features.
Faraday Future secured $100 million in new financing. Two of the company’s board members, including its executive chair, will depart once it receives the funding.
Authorities in New York, California and several other states are suing Nexo, a crypto lender, for not registering its interest-earning product.
FTX won the assets to Voyager, the bankrupt crypto brokerage, at an auction. The agreement is valued at about $1.4 billion.
Elon Musk and Parag Agrawal want to reschedule their questioning, which was supposed to start yesterday in Delaware.
Congress wants to clean up all the space junk. Lawmakers introduced a bill focused on creating a market for space debris removal services.
Walmart has been on a tech tear recently, from adding the ability to try on clothes with VR to embarking on a tech hiring spree. And now, it’s working with Roblox to create two metaverse experiences called Walmart Land and Walmart’s Universe of Play. The company is treating the partnership as a test for how much it wants to push into the metaverse, but for now, the goal is to attract younger shoppers.
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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