Tech isn’t ready for what happens next
Good morning! Companies have had since May to start prepping for the eventual decision to overturn Roe v. Wade. But what are they doing to prepare for the next wave of Supreme Court decisions that might be coming down the pike?
Companies have been responding to the decision on Roe v. Wade since the draft was leaked last month. Some are offering abortion-related travel coverage. Others are giving employees relocation assistance. And the precise details of those plans are still being figured out.
But the court is one step ahead. Justice Clarence Thomas already wants to reconsider past cases like Griswold, Lawrence and Obergefell. But tech won’t talk about that right now.
- My colleague Lizzy Lawrence and I spent Friday asking companies if they’ve given future Supreme Court rulings some thought. The only one that directly responded to the question was DoorDash, which said it couldn’t speculate on future court rulings.
- Everyone else (Meta, Yelp, Indeed, Microsoft) reiterated whatever plans they have to help employees seeking abortion coverage.
The “it’s too soon!” argument is weak, HR experts told us. This decision can open the door to many others, and experts said that now is the time to prepare for it.
- For now, preparation could take the form of asking employees what they need.
- And don’t leave these conversations to employee activists or ERGs, either. “All of these conversations should live in the C-suite,” Grav’s Madison Butler told us.
Figuring out the best response to Roe v. Wade is a hurdle. And it might be just the beginning.
— Sarah Roach (she/her/hers)
Intel wants its CHIPS
As Congress bides its time with the CHIPS bill, semiconductor companies are getting angry. Intel announced last week that it might push opening its planned Ohio factory complex because of the delay in congressional action.
The $52 billion bill subsidizing domestic chip production has been delayed since last year. And chipmakers aiming to expand domestically have had enough.
- In a statement to The Washington Post, Intel claimed the Ohio factory will “depend heavily” on CHIPS act funding.
- GlobalFoundries echoed this, saying that the funding would “affect the rate and pace at which we invest in expanding our U.S. manufacturing capacity.”
Chipmakers say they want the U.S. to be a semiconductor powerhouse, and the bill will help. Micron’s Sanjay Mehrotra told Axios that Congress has a “historical and critically urgent opportunity to restore American leadership in the semiconductor industry.”
But these companies don’t really need this funding to survive. Wall Street wouldn’t be happy if the bill fails, but Intel won’t go out of business.
- Micron, meanwhile, has moved the majority of its manufacturing plants to east Asia over the past two decades, and it hasn’t committed to actually building any new facilities in the U.S.
Congress didn’t come through with a deal after its meeting last week, and companies are impatient for the bill to pass before the August recess. House leaders said that there is “no reason that we should not pass this bill through Congress in July.” For chipmakers, it can’t come soon enough.
— Nat Rubio-Licht (they/them/theirs)
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People are talking
Matt Mullenweg called GoDaddy an “existential threat” to WordPress:
- “What I’m worried about is the future of WordPress if GoDaddy succeeds and suffocates the rest of the ecosystem.”
Michael Saylor thinks people should give bitcoin a chance:
- “[Bitcoin] is still at an early stage in its development and poorly understood.”
Coming this week
The Databricks Data & AI Summit starts today in San Francisco. Adobe, Intuit and Databricks leaders are expected to talk.
The Cloud Wars Expo begins tomorrow in San Francisco. SAP, Microsoft and IBM Cloud leaders are hosting their own talks.
RIP TweetDeck, which officially shuts down Friday.
In other news
The U.K.'s HPI visa is proving popular among new tech workers. And without meaningful immigration reform in the U.S., it's going to keep winning over top tech talent.
A group of Amazon employees protested at Seattle’s pride parade Sunday for the company to take down books calling transgender people mentally ill.
Apple is ready to bargain in “good faith” with its Maryland retail workers who became the first in the company to unionize, according to Reuters.
An investor group bought Zendesk in an all-cash transaction for around $10.2 billion. The deal gives shareholders $77.50 per share and will take the company private.
Goldman is raising capital to help Celsius, which stopped all withdrawals and transfers earlier this month.
Wise's Kristo Kaarmann is being investigated by U.K. regulators after he failed to pay a tax bill.
Prime Day isn't as cool as it used to be. Sales growth, order sizes and overall investment in Prime Day has slowed down over the past few years.
Los Angeles may become the first major city to ban new gas stations because of the climate crisis.
Your data point for the day: Google searches for “'join union” have increased by 184% in the last week.
Social apps of yore
Remember FriendFeed? How about PowWow? Yeah, we don’t either. In the graveyard of dead apps and social websites, some stand out (RIP Vine </3) while others barely broke a few million users. If you feel like wading through the ghosts of social media companies past, this Tedium article has the greatest hits of the ’90s through the mid-2010s.
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The competitive edge of digital solutions: When companies invest in maintaining their “green ledger” with the same commitment they have to their financial ledgers, they will be able to connect their environmental, social, and financial data holistically so they can steer their business towards sustainability. At the end of the day, what gets measured, gets managed.
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