Tech giants, Facebook, Google and Amazon sent US President-elect a detailed list of their policy priorities and called on the Donald Trump to support strong encryption, as well as to allow them to hire more foreign workers.
The Silicon Valley companies sent a strongly worded letter to Mr. Trump, which focused on immigration reform and maintaining liability protections from content that users share on their platforms.
The letter was sent to Donald Trump by the Internet Association, a trade group, which includes Facebook, Google, Uber and Twitter and representing an early effort to hopefully repair the damaged relationship between the technology sector and Trump.
The technology sector has been less than favorable towards Donald Trump, who was universally disliked at times and denounced in Silicon Valley during the presidential campaign.
However, in a complete U-turn, the letter from the tech giants seeks to encourage a prosperous relationship with the President-elect. “The Internet industry looks forward to engaging in an open and productive dialogue,” reads the letter, signed by Michael Beckerman, president of the Internet Association, and seen by Reuters. When Trump’s presidential win was announced on November 9, Silicon Valley was less than impressed. 500 Startups founder Dave McClure, made it clear that he was not happy with the results. “If you’re not f**king pi**ed right now, what is wrong with you? I’m pi**ed off, I’m sad; I’m ashamed, I’m angry,” he screamed at the audience during the Web Summit.
“I knew it could happen, of course. I mean, it was obvious, there were millions of people that supported him,” he said at the Web Summit.
“I was just very surprised to see it actually play out, considering the polls and projections were so far in Clinton’s court,” he added. The surprise of Donald Trump’s win echoed throughout the whole of Silicon Valley, as everyone, including the polls, thought Hillary Clinton would win. Prior to the election, an open letter from several tech companies and addressed to Donald Trump, spoke against his bid for US presidency, stating that his tactics were “divisive.” “We stand against Donald Trump’s divisive candidacy and want a candidate who embraces the ideals that built America’s technology industry: freedom of expression, openness to newcomers, equality of opportunity, public investments in research and infrastructure, and respect for the rule of law,” the letter read. Facebook founder, Mark Zuckerberg, also said that Trump’s comments on building a wall to prevent Mexican people from entering the US, was coming from a “fearful voice.” However, once the election results were announced this changed and Zuckerberg said that he was now feeling “hopeful.”
The tech industry is now attempting to try and reclaim the lost friendship by backtracking on previous comments and re-forging a new alliance with the president-elect.
And they are not the only groups who have had to say a silent sorry.
Politicians and world leaders have also backtracked on comments they made about the businessman and entrepreneur prior to his election win.
UK Prime Minister Theresa May and UK Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson, have both had to call a truce with Trump after initially calling him out on some of his negative comments. Silicon Valley’s transition from hating Trump to having to “accept” his victory, came swift, and like so many others, the tech industry was forced to eat their words. Whether they remain united and work with the newly-elected president however, remains to be seen.