What you need to know
- In June 2021, Microsoft investors questioned whether the company's surveillance products and stated corporate values were mutually exclusive.
- Said questioning took the form of shareholder proposals.
- Now, Microsoft is proceeding with a third-party review to assess its products' human rights impacts.
A stir was created in June 2021 over Microsoft's surveillance technology's applications and their seemingly diametric opposition to the company's stated values. This conflict was brought to the public's attention in large part by shareholder proposals. Now, Microsoft has confirmed it's having a third-party review done to assess whether its products and values are misaligned.
Said proposal situation has been defused and shareholders have withdrawn their motions, according to a Bloomberg report that also states Microsoft is undergoing a third-party review to assess what impact its surveillance technology is having on human rights. Here is Microsoft's statement:
The findings of this review are expected to drop in 2022, indicating it will be some time before answers are given regarding whether human rights are being violated or negatively impacted by Microsoft's surveillance technology deals with police and government agencies.
This is far from the first time Microsoft's shareholders have asked hard questions. Recently, Microsoft and the "right to repair" movement had a big moment as a result of shareholder activity.
Robert Carnevale is the News Editor for Windows Central. He's a big fan of Kinect (it lives on in his heart), Sonic the Hedgehog, and the legendary intersection of those two titans, Sonic Free Riders. He is the author of Cold War 2395. Have a useful tip? Send it to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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