Tech companies unite to challenge Trump

Github has invited Google’s Alphabet, Netflix and Airbnb to discuss filing an amicus brief in support of a lawsuit challenging U.S. President Donald Trump’s order restricting immigration from seven Muslim-majority countries, said a spokesperson for a company organizing the gathering.

This follows Microsoft, Amazon.com Inc and Expedia who filed declarations in court on Monday supporting a lawsuit filed by the Washington state attorney general.

Other companies invited to meet include Adobe Systems Inc, AdRoll, Automattic Inc, Box Inc, Cloudera Inc, Cloudflare Inc, Docusign, Dropbox, Etsy Inc, Evernote Corp, Glu Mobile Inc, Lithium, Medium, Mozilla, Pinterest, reddit, Salesforce.com Inc, SpaceX, Stripe, Yelp Inc, and Zynga Inc, the source said.

Google in addition, plans to give as much as $4 million to four organizations that provide legal assistance and other services to immigrants.

The crisis fund will consist of $2 million from the company and $2 million in employee donations.

Google is worried that Trump’s executive order will harm many of its current workers and their families, and will make it more difficult to hire technically skilled workers from outside the U.S. in the future.

Ride-hailing app Lyft said it will give $1 million over the next four years to the American Civil Liberties Union. Lyft’s co-founders, Logan Green and John Zimmer, said they “will not be silent on issues that threaten the values of our community.”

Reddit founder Alexis Ohanian said in a open letter today “Lady Liberty’s lamp is dimming, which is why it’s more important than ever that we speak out and show up to support all those for whom it shines—past, present, and future. I ask you to do this however you see fit, whether it’s calling your representative (this works, it’s how we defeated SOPA + PIPA), marching in protest, donating to the ACLU, or voting, of course, and not just for Presidential elections.”

Ironically Uber, the ride-hailing app, said it will offer financial help to employees affected by the ban.

The company’s CEO, Travis Kalanick, is part of Trump’s economic advisory group and said he will bring up the issue with the president on Friday in Washington.

Meanwhile President Donald Trump is reviving a long-standing program that deputizes local officers to enforce federal immigration law… Gestapo anyone?

This story was first published by  Dan Levine and Jeffrey Dastin of Reuters and Joseph Pisani of AP.  Image by politicalhumor.com

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Charis McAwesome

Charis McAwesome is the full time writer of hashtagme and was previously a social media manager/advisor to companies including Microsoft, Intel, Lenovo, Deloitte, Tertiary institutions, banks and many more. Charis still provides digital strategy and big data analysis as a consultant.