After Microsoft and Uber Flee, the Internet association disconnects

The Internet Association is ready to delete its account. The business group founded in 2012 to be the “unified voice of the Internet economy in Washington” will not see 2022.

“Our industry has experienced tremendous growth and change since the creation of the Internet Association almost 10 years ago, and in accordance with this development, the Board of Directors has made the difficult decision to close the organization to the end of this year, “read a statement posted on the IA website.

Politico’s Emily Birnbaum signaled the impending shutdown in an article Tuesday that cited Microsoft and Uber departures in November as backbreakers for an organization already facing grudge from member companies who saw it absent from tech antitrust debates .

Things had looked brighter for IA when it launched in September 2012, when the new group – with founding members Amazon, AOL, eBay, Expedia, Facebook, Google, IAC, LinkedIn, Monster Worldwide, Rackspace, salesforce.com, TripAdvisor, Yahoo !, and Zynga — got its start as an online counterpart to older organizations such as the Consumer Technology Association (the electronics industry group that runs CES) and the Computer & Communications Industry Association, more focused on telecommunications.

IA has worked hard to position itself on the policy map with position papers and lobbying basics for a lavish awards dinner (at the 2018 gala, the Amazon sponsored ‘Two Day Sipping’ was an inspired cocktail name) and a well-organized conference (2018’s At the Virtuous Circle event, IAC President Barry Diller advised mainstream media to welcome Facebook and Google as the new overlords of the technology, saying “You can be a serf on their land!”).

But the association cut ties by choosing to back the legislation that became the Allow States and Victims to Fight Online Sex Trafficking Act of 2017 – FOSTA for short – when President Trump signed it in 2018. .

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This bill revises section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, the law protecting online forums from the messages of their users, to make them responsible for content promoting or facilitating prostitution and sex trafficking. In June 2021, the Government Accountability Office reported that federal prosecutors had filed only one case under FOSTA; News reports suggest that FOSTA’s removal of existing online platforms put sex workers at risk.

IA lost a few more friends when she presented Ivanka Trump with her “Internet Freedom Award” at her 2019 gala (in which she also awarded Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi a “Lifetime Achievement Award”). This exercise in seeking the favors of the Trump family has sparked wide contempt on Twitter, a member of the AI ​​for the next two weeks and the change.

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