Posted by John FrankVice President & Deputy General Counsel, Microsoft
Today, the Wall Street Journal reported that the U.S. government is reviewing allegations that Microsoft business partners in three countries may have engaged in illegal activity, and if they did, whether Microsoft played any role in these alleged incidents.
We take all allegations brought to our attention seriously, and we cooperate fully in any government inquiries. Like other large companies with operations around the world, we sometimes receive allegations about potential misconduct by employees or business partners, and we investigate them fully, regardless of the source. We also invest heavily in proactive training, compliance systems, monitoring and audits to ensure our business operations around the world meet the highest legal and ethical standards.
The matters raised in the Wall Street Journal are important, and it is appropriate that both Microsoft and the government review them. It is also important to remember that it is not unusual for such reviews to find that an allegation was without merit. (The WSJ reported earlier this week that an allegation has been made against the WSJ itself, and that, after a thorough investigation, its lawyers have been unable to determine that there was any wrongdoing).
Posted by John Scott TynesImagine Cup Competition Manager, Microsoft
At a time when good jobs in IT are going unfilled, there is a strong desire among parents and educators to improve science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) education in K-12 schools. The need to embrace STEM skills early is clear: in a 2011 survey commissioned by Microsoft, nearly four in five STEM college students said they chose to pursue STEM while still in high school (and one in five had chosen in middle school), yet the vast majority of those same students reported their K-12 STEM education did not leave them prepared to excel in college.
The time to inspire kids to pursue scientific skills and careers is obvious: early and often. Without that crucial intervention, and the chance for kids to discover that they really can master these skills, they will graduate high school believing STEM is just too hard for them. A recent survey commissioned by ASQ found that the risk of failure has a profound impact on how teenagers perceive STEM skills, with nearly half of them reporting they are uncomfortable pursuing challenging academic studies because they fear failure – and 95 percent of them see STEM skills as a risky course of study.
Posted by Dan BrossSenior Director, Corporate Citizenship, Microsoft
We live in a world of increased and appropriate expectations related to the accountability companies have to operate as good corporate citizens. Consumers expect companies to have a positive impact in communities where they operate. People from organizations such as Microsoft are expected to behave with integrity, all day.
Posted by Orlando AyalaChairman of Emerging Markets, Microsoft
In celebration of International Women’s Day, Microsoft is proud to join United Nations Women (UN Women) and artists from around the world to launch a moving and inspiring song and music video, “One Woman.” It celebrates what we all know: to enable the future we want, we must recognize the enormous potential of half of the world’s population – women.
To truly unleash that potential, women must be free from discrimination, including the gender-based violence which is the focus of this year’s International Women’s Day. Up to seven in 10 women will experience some form of violence in their lifetimes. This violence causes more death and disability than cancer, malaria, traffic accidents and war combined in women ages 15 to 44. Violence against women also comes at a high economic cost, ranging from an estimated US $11.28 billion annually in Australia, to US $32.9 billion annually in England and Wales.
The “One Woman” song aims to galvanize support and raise awareness for this issue. We encourage you to take action and share the song because together we can make a difference by saying no to violence and yes to gender equality.
Posted by Cameron EvansNational & Chief Technology Officer of U.S. Education, Microsoft
How would you react if you learned that an outside agency came to your child’s school and, without your knowledge or consent, collected confidential data about your child and then used the data they gathered to make money for themselves? Would you be upset? As a parent, I believe the answer is resoundingly “yes.”
In our view, this is unacceptable. We don’t let advertising and marketing representatives come into schools to watch, listen and take away data on student interactions in the classroom so they can market to children, and we shouldn’t let that happen in the virtual world either. Cloud Services providers selling to schools and colleges should be transparent about how they use the data they collect, and get clear consent for the data they collect and use.
Student data and student privacy should not be for sale. Period.