Posted by Brad SmithExecutive Vice President & General Counsel, Microsoft
The National Association of Attorneys General (NAAG) today announced that 39 attorneys general, representing both parties and from states across the nation including Washington, North Carolina, Massachusetts, Texas, Michigan, Florida, Colorado and Illinois, sent a letter to the U.S. Federal Trade Commissioners affirming their commitment to use their existing state powers, and calling for stronger federal enforcement against companies around the world that use stolen information technology to gain an unfair business advantage and who seek to sell their products in the U.S. The 39 attorneys general represent 36 US states and three US territories: Guam, Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands.
The letter clearly highlights the impact of the issue and the resolve of the attorneys general to tackle it directly, while also calling for additional state and federal action. As the letter says, “Competition is unfairly distorted…when a manufacturer gains a cost advantage by using stolen information technology. It offends our sense of fairness when such wrongdoers reap a commercial advantage from their illegal acts.”
Posted by Bill KamelaSenior Policy Counsel, Microsoft
Today, I was honored to represent Microsoft at the White House as President Barack Obama signed into law a critically important piece of legislation, the VOW to Hire Heroes Act of 2011. Joining the president at the signing ceremony were the First Lady, the Vice President and Dr. Jill Biden, along with U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs Secretary Eric Shinseki, distinguished leaders from veteran serving organizations (VSO’s) and a number of U.S. veterans of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.
This new law will provide our veterans with additional training and employment opportunities as they transition from their military occupations into civilian careers. The passage of this bipartisan legislation is a significant victory for veterans, who too often return home without the support they need for a successful transition into civilian life. We applaud the House and Senate for their unanimous approval of the VOW, which combines components of Senator Patty Murray’s Hiring Heroes Act (S. 951; Report #112-36), and Representative Jeff Miller’s Veterans Opportunity to Work Act (H.R. 2433; Report #112-242).
Posted by Dan ReedCorporate Vice President, Technology Policy Groups, Microsoft
The United States Congress Joint Select Committee on Deficit Reduction is hard at work on ways to bring our nation’s financial house in order, and drive the economic growth essential to our future. While there are many big issues facing the committee, unlicensed spectrum access – one of the smaller issues in play – deserves serious attention, for it has the potential to facilitate substantial long-term innovation, and create increased economic value for the nation and consumers. To ensure this potential is realized, Microsoft urges the Joint Committee to preserve the Federal Communications Commission’s (FCC) authority to allocate spectrum for unlicensed use in the broadcast TV bands.
Microsoft Executive Vice President and General Counsel Brad Smith had the following statement regarding Washington State Gov. Chris Gregoire’s proposed budget recommendations:
“We’re pleased that Governor Gregoire has prioritized education in her budget recommendations, given the difficult choices she faced among the many programs funded by the state. As we at Microsoft experience first-hand, education is the foundation for the state’s future economic growth and the ability of companies to create and fill jobs here. It’s important for the state to avoid further reductions in higher education funding, as these inevitably would lead either to a decline in quality or yet more tuition increases for students. It’s similarly important to maintain investments in K-12 education across the state, since additional cuts to the classroom and the school year would have a dramatic and damaging effect on student readiness for the 21st century economy.
Posted by Doug ParkDirector, Online Safety - Interactive Entertainment Business, Microsoft
This week, I had the opportunity to join more than 400 educators, safety advocates and industry representatives at the Family Online Safety Institute Annual Conference in Washington, D.C. The yearly event focuses on innovative ways to develop and advance safer and healthier online experiences for children.
The theme of this year’s conference was “Evaluate. Innovate. Collaborate.” The message was clear: we must continue to work together to explore new ways, and utilize new technologies to help keep kids safer online.