Mar 5, 2020
Bärí A. Williams is an attorney and startup advisor, previously served as Vice President of Legal, Policy, and Business Affairs at All Turtles, an artificial intelligence studio. Her primary practice areas include emerging technology transactions, privacy and data protection, and terms of service. She is the former Head of Business Operations Management for North America at StubHub, where she was responsible for business planning and operations to manage and oversee technical internal and external metrics, product innovation, and partnerships and drive P&L results across the company. Prior to StubHub, Bärí was a senior commercial attorney at Facebook supporting internet.org connectivity efforts, building drones, satellites, and lasers, and supporting the company's supply chain. She also successfully took on the passion project of creating and implementing Facebook’s Supplier Diversity Program, launched in October 2016. She has served as an advisor to startups in the enterprise and e-commerce space, including Blavity (and AfroTech), Bandwagon, Owl, and Telepath.
Bärí is a graduate of the University of California, Berkeley (BA, Mass Communications), St. Mary’s College of California (MBA), the University of California, Los Angeles (MA, African-American Studies), and the University of California, Hastings College of Law (JD). She is also a published author with bylines in the New York Times, WIRED, Fortune, and Fast Company. She recently gave congressional testimony on bias in AI in financial services in Feb. 2020. Her book, Diversity in the Workplace: Eye-Opening Interviews to Jumpstart Conversations About Identity, Privilege, and Bias, will be released on March 31.
Tech responds to coronavirus
Tech giants are responding to coronavirus fears as Amazon reported that an employee contracted the illness.
Facebook has cancelled its annual participation in SXSW. The social media giant has also pledged to give the World Health Organization as many free ads as needed to combat the virus.
And Google has canceled its annual I/O developer conference which was scheduled for May 12th and 14th. Google has also halted international travel for employees.
The New York City Police Department has said that it will remove DNA profiles of individuals who haven’t been convicted of any crimes. The New York Times reports that some 82,000 DNA profiles in the NYPD’s database belong to non-criminals. NYPD had detained and collected DNA evidence from kids as young as 12. The Times reports that officers once offered a 12-year-old a soda during questioning then collected the boy’s DNA from the straw. Many other individuals who were merely questioned, who weren’t convicted or in many cases not even arrested, also had their DNA collected. The database will be purged in the coming weeks and, going further, the NYPD will collect DNA from children only in cases involving felonies, sex crimes, gun charges, and hate crimes.
Raja Krishnamoorthi, the Chairman of the House Subcommittee on Economic and Consumer Policy wrote Amazon VP of Public Policy Brian Huseman requesting extensive information regarding its home security subsidiary Ring’s partnerships with law enforcement to surveil communities with Ring’s footage. Back in August, Ring began disclosing the police departments it has been working with which, as of today, includes some 967 police departments nationwide. In the DC area, participating police departments include Takoma Park, Bladensburg, Seat Pleasant, Prince George’s in Maryland, and, in Virginia, Alexandria’s Police Department is working with Ring.
A San Diego judge has found that Instacart cannot misclassify workers as independent contractors. In granting a preliminary injunction against Instacart, the judge ruled to enforce the new AB5 law which seeks to ensure that gig workers are classified as employees in order to access benefits and have the right to form a union. NBC News has more.
The Hill reports that Democrats are split on what to do about reauthorizing the USA Freedom Act, the cybersecurity bill put in place following Edward Snowden’s revelation that the National Security Agency was storing millions of Americans’ phone numbers. Adam Schiff and Jerrold Nadler are spearheading efforts to reauthorize the bill while more liberal Democrats, including Zoe Lofgren, are seeking more privacy protections. Many of Schiff’s allies during the impeachment hearing are now opposing his efforts to reauthorize the cyber bill and, interestingly, the White House has also weighed in saying the President, including Attorney General Barr, wants the full bill reauthorized without changes. The disputed changes involve the extent to which there should be more transparency in how the FISA court operates with regard to surveillance.