August, 2012

  • Back to School with New Devices? Lesson #1: Mobile Safety

    Posted by Jacqueline Beauchere
    Director, Trustworthy Computing Communications, Microsoft

    Unlike their parents who went back to school with new notebooks, pens, pencils, and binders, today’s young people are likely readying for the coming academic year with laptops, tablets and mobile phones. But, before parents arm kids with the latest Internet-enabled devices, it’s a good idea to share some do’s and don’ts about online safety.

    Whether it’s a new laptop for research and writing, a tablet for reading, or a mobile phone to get in touch with mom or dad in the event of an emergency, kids are using mobile technology more than ever. Data show that 52 percent of kids ages eight to 12, and 77 percent between 12 and 17, own mobile phones, with teenagers 14 to 17 sending an average of 100 text messages a day.


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  • The Week in Tech Policy – Aug. 27th Edition

    Posted by Jeff Meisner
    Editor, Microsoft on the Issues

    In this edition of The Week in Tech Policy, we have stories on the Federal Communications Commission’s new broadband progress report, wireless spectrum and California’s new Location Privacy Act.

    Federal Communications Commission issues new broadband report. “The nation has made significant progress expanding high-speed Internet access in recent years, but further implementation of major reforms newly adopted by the Federal Communications Commission is required before broadband will be available to the approximately 19 million Americans who still lack access,” according to the eighth FCC broadband progress report. The agency’s report, which was covered by various news outlets and blogs, including CNET, goes on to emphasize broadband access as essential to “innovation, jobs and global competitiveness.”

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  • Microsoft Partners with National Journal, The Atlantic for “Conversations with the Next Generation”

    Posted by Fred Humphries
    Vice President, U.S. Government Affairs, Microsoft

    This summer, the people of the United States will look to Charlotte and Tampa as political leaders from across the country gather to lay out their vision for the future. Younger voters in particular have a stake in the course that will be charted in each city. They remain a pivotal voting block for the candidate who will best address their issues and concerns regarding jobs, education, political accountability and how to face the nation’s biggest challenges.

    Conversations with the Next Generation

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  • Microsoft Builds on Community Investment in Charlotte Region, Announces Partnership with 2012 Democratic National Convention

    Posted by Fred Humphries
    Vice President, U.S. Government Affairs, Microsoft

    Microsoft has been named an official innovation provider of the 2012 Democratic National Convention and Committee for Charlotte 2012. This new relationship builds on Microsoft’s long-term partnership with the City of Charlotte to help youth realize new opportunities through educational development and support.

    As an official innovation provider, Microsoft will streamline communications and enhance the convention experience for both convention organizers and participants through innovative, collaborative technology solutions like Office 365, consulting and support services, and – through our work with convention organizers and partner Interknowlogy – a touch-enabled Windows application that will allow convention delegates to cast floor votes on kiosks throughout the convention hall.

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  • The Week in Tech Policy – Aug. 20th Edition

    Posted by Jeff Meisner
    Editor, Microsoft on the Issues

    In this edition of The Week in Tech Policy, we’ve included stories on making political donations via wireless texting, spectrum sharing, post-secondary financial aid and jobs data and more.

    Federal Election Commission clears the way for political donations via wireless text. Americans are one step closer to being able to make political contributions via their phones’ text messaging capabilities, Bloomberg recently reported. On Aug. 15, the FEC ruled that wireless carriers would not be responsible for potentially fraudulent campaign donations and “and could refuse text-donation services to campaigns if they are not deemed commercially viable,” according to Bloomberg. The FEC’s move comes in the wake of concern expressed by the wireless industry earlier in August, as reported by NPR and others.

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  • The View from Washington State: Our Investments in Education are Among our Best

    Posted by Jane Broom Davidson
    Director of Community Affairs, Microsoft

    In the global information economy, opportunities for individuals and communities directly depend on the quality of the education, training and learning opportunities available to them. Nowhere is that more true than right here in Washington State, where our state economy is increasingly reliant on innovation sectors such as computer science, green energy, advanced manufacturing and the life sciences.

    That’s why one of Microsoft’s top priorities in the state is to help expand the range and improve the results of educational opportunities – especially in the subject areas of math and science - available to Washington’s citizens. Our goal is to help people develop a commitment to life-long learning that embraces mathematics and the sciences and endures through public lectures and community events. That commitment begins with early learning programs, continues through a strong K-12 system and carries on to high quality post-secondary education.

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  • Microsoft and Facebook Partner with Washington State for MyVote App

    Editor’s Note: This is a guest post from Washington Secretary of State Sam Reed.

    Washington is developing a reputation in the elections and tech community for pioneering work in reaching potential voters online and through social media. The latest example is the state’s partnership with Microsoft to create an app that links Facebook users with our MyVote online service for voter registration and information.

    With strong cooperation from Facebook, the app was launched on Aug. 6, following considerable national advance national buzz as a fresh way to use the power of social media and networking to nudge people to take part in their government by voting.

    Although people of all ages regularly use Facebook, I am particularly delighted at the prospect of another platform to reach our “Millennials,” people from 18 to 29.

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  • Back to School with Microsoft: Tampa Educators, Students to Benefit from New Digital Education Initiative with City, Hillsborough County Public Schools

    Posted by Marietta Davis
    General Manager, Greater Southeast District, Microsoft

    This past Saturday, Tampa hosted “Back to School with Microsoft,” a successful event that trained more than 500 local educators as part of our efforts to modernize in-classroom teaching with Microsoft technologies, boost students’ technology skills, and emphasize the value of science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) learning in preparation for 21st century careers. The Back to School event marks the kick-off of an exciting new effort between Microsoft, the City of Tampa and Hillsborough County Public Schools (HCPS) to implement a strategic digital education initiative across the region aimed at preparing local students for the opportunities of tomorrow’s economy.

    Microsoft’s Kelly Green joins Lake County School Board Member Jim Miller, Hillsborough County Schools Superintendent MaryEllen Elia, and School Board Member Carol Kurdell at the “Back to School” event.
    Local educator Stephanie Saez-Hamilton helps teachers learn how to use Kodu.

    At Microsoft, we know that science and technology are enormous drivers of innovation and job creation, but too many of our students are facing an opportunity divide – a growing gap between those who have the access, skills and opportunities to be successful and those who do not. Microsoft’s deep commitment to education and significant investments across the U.S. are aimed at closing that divide, with a focus on helping youth obtain the skills that they need while connecting them with greater opportunities for education, employment and entrepreneurship. We’re thrilled to be working with the City of Tampa and HCPS to bring the best technologies to area educators in support of helping students realize their full potential.

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  • Pulse on Citizenship: Working to make a difference

    Editor’s Note: This post is part of a monthly series from Microsoft’s Citizenship team that appears at 6 a.m. PT on the second Wednesday of every month. Pulse on Citizenship provides insight and commentary on topics and trends in corporate citizenship.

    Posted by Steve Lippman
    Director of Corporate Citizenship, Microsoft

    Earlier this summer, Net Impact and Rutgers University released the results of a study that examined what students and professionals across the U.S. most valued in a job. The findings of the report - Talent Report: What Workers Want in 2012 - were striking, particularly for those of us with an interest in corporate social responsibility:

    - Employees who say they have the opportunity to make a direct social and environmental impact through their job report greater job satisfaction than those who can’t by a 2:1 ratio.

    - Students believe that having a job that makes a social impact on the world is a more important life goal than a prestigious career or being wealthy or even having children. Among their life goals, it ranked only below financial security and marriage in importance. 

    - More than half (58 percent) of graduating students said they would take a 15 percent pay cut to “work for an organization whose values are like my own.” More than a third (35 percent) said they would take a 15 percent pay cut to ‘work for a company committed to corporate and environmental sustainability.’

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  • Do Not Track in the Windows 8 Setup Experience

    Posted by Brendon Lynch
    Chief Privacy Officer, Microsoft

    With Windows 8’s recent release to manufacturing, we know many people are interested in how customers will discover Do Not Track (DNT) in Internet Explorer 10. DNT will be enabled in the "Express Settings" portion of the Windows 8 set-up experience. There, customers will also be given a "Customize" option, allowing them to easily switch DNT "off" if they'd like.

    This approach is consistent with Microsoft's goal of designing and configuring IE features to better protect user privacy, while also affording customers control of those features. It also underscores that the privacy of our customers is a top priority for Microsoft.

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  • The Week in Tech Policy – Aug. 6th Edition

    Posted by Jeff Meisner
    Editor, Microsoft on the Issues

    This edition of The Week in Tech Policy has stories on higher education, online privacy guidelines for children, wireless spectrum and more.

    Moody’s, Standard & Poor’s assess higher education’s financial health. Two major credit agencies have reached the conclusion that the high education industry’s financial risks have intensified since the start of 2012. Why? According to the University of Washington’s Office of Planning & Budgeting Blog, “both agencies noted that…state budget appropriations continue to fall, operating expenses are outpacing tuition revenue growth, and diminishing family net worth could affect enrollment as a growing number of colleges become unaffordable.”

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  • Director Video Series: Dina Dublon Shares Insights and Experiences as Microsoft Director

    Posted by John Seethoff
    Vice President and Deputy General Counsel

    In the latest installment of our Director Video Series featuring conversations with Microsoft’s board of directors, Dina Dublon recently sat down with Microsoft’s Channel 9 to share insights on her experience as a Microsoft director.

    During the course of the conversation, Ms. Dublon speaks about being one of the first women on the trading floor of a major bank and her background in finance and accounting. She also offers a behind-the-scenes view of how the board operates, and talks about the importance of board diversity.

    For additional information about corporate governance at Microsoft, please click here. I invite you to leave a comment on this blog and follow us on Twitter to keep up with the latest news from the Corporate Governance team.

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