Commemorating International Human Rights Day

On this day – Dec. 10 – 66 years ago, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) was approved by the UN General Assembly. To commemorate the day, they proclaimed the first Human Rights Day in 1950 to bring to the attention ‘of the peoples of the world’ the UDHR as the common standard of achievement for all peoples and all nations. This need to protect and indeed promote human Read more »

What if? Microsoft appeal ponders U.S. reaction to foreign data demand

“Imagine this scenario. Officers of the local Stadtpolizei investigating a suspected leak to the press descend on Deutsche Bank headquarters in Frankfurt, Germany. They serve a warrant to seize a bundle of private letters that a New York Times reporter is storing in a safe deposit box at a Deutsche Bank USA branch in Manhattan. The bank complies by ordering the New York branch manager to open the reporter’s box Read more »

Embedding human rights: Who leads?

The following is a guest post by David Vermijs, an advisor with Shift, a leading non-profit organization that helps governments, businesses and their stakeholders put the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights into practice. Recently the European Union adopted a new Directive that will require approximately 6,000 enterprises across Europe to report on how they are conducting due diligence on human rights and other corporate responsibility issues by Read more »

Microsoft and The Seattle Times continue partnership with discussion on relations with China

LiveWire, Brad Smith, China, Seattle Times

Last Thursday, Microsoft hosted the second LiveWire event in partnership with The Seattle Times at its Redmond, Washington campus. Building on the first LiveWire event on early learning programs in Washington state, last week’s discussion was, “A Bridge to China: Exploring the Northwest’s future with the East.” Moderated by The Seattle Times economics columnist, Jon Talton, more than 450 community members came together to hear the panel of speakers including Read more »

Online assessments in the United States

Almost everyone remembers taking an exam on paper, filling in your multiple-choice answer selection in the oval bubbles with a No. 2 pencil. Ah, the good old days. Before the widespread availability of personal technology we did most of our learning (and teaching) with the most advanced technologies available – paper and pencil. While definitely tried and true, paper and pencil don’t enable the level of adaptation to the learning Read more »

New poll: Growing concern in Ireland over online data privacy

privacy, Ireland

Today we released a new poll showing that a large majority of Irish people want strong privacy protections for their online data, and they expect the government to stand up for Irish law when other countries disagree. 87 percent agree their personal information in the cloud deserves the same privacy protections as that stored on paper. 89 percent say a foreign government should not be able to demand personal information Read more »

Microsoft hosts discussion on innovative solutions to help transitioning veterans

veterans, education, military

On Nov. 6, Microsoft, in partnership with Visa, hosted a discussion on “Innovative Solutions to Help Transitioning Service Members” in Washington, D.C., as part of our @Microsoft conversation series. In recognition of Veterans Day, the event brought together experts and advocates who are addressing critical transition issues for veterans. As we recognize the service of our veterans, we realize that returning service members face significant and ongoing day-to-day challenges as Read more »

Microsoft Innovation & Policy Center offers practical guidance for state and local governments to manage cyber risks

Jennifer Byrne, cyber risks

The Microsoft Innovation & Policy Center in Washington, D.C. continued the @Microsoft series in October, National Cybersecurity Awareness Month, with a discussion on practical guidance for state and local governments to manage cyber risks. The event brought together decision-makers from state and local governments, the administration, and industry experts who confront cyber threats every day, to address the unique challenges they face, as well to provide information on resources and Read more »

ITU Plenipotentiary 2014 – Positive Outcomes and a Path to the Future

The International Telecommunication Union’s 19th Plenipotentiary Conference (PP-14) concluded successfully last week in Busan, South Korea, after three weeks of intense discussion, debate, and negotiation over critical issues affecting global telecommunications and the Internet.  I had the privilege of participating on the United States delegation to this important conference, led by Ambassador Daniel Sepulveda, Deputy Assistant Secretary of State and U.S. Coordinator for International Communications and Information Policy, and I Read more »

#MSFTCOSO POV: Everyone can exercise S-M-A-R-T online habits

Youth, parents, policymakers, teachers and other adults can all be S-M-A-R-T about staying safer online. That is: savvy about online activities and choices; mindful of actions (and inactions) that may impact one’s self or others, and behave responsibly and appropriately, all with a technology-focus in mind. This was a theme I shared at this month’s Safer Internet Forum (SIF), organized and funded by the European Commission under its Safer Internet Read more »