Silicon Valley Titans Join Internet Lobbying Group
The Internet Association, the Internet's first special interest group, has announced its official roster of members and its policy platform.
The membership includes titans of the tech world: Google, Facebook, Amazon.com, AOL, eBay, Expedia, IAC, LinkedIn, Monster Worldwide, Rackspace, salesforce.com, TripAdvisor, Yahoo! and Zynga.
With forces combined, the 14 companies announced a group platform that has three major goals: Protecting Internet freedom; fostering innovation and economic growth; and empowering the internet user.
"It is the Internet's decentralized and open model that has unleashed unprecedented entrepreneurialism," Capitol Hill veteran and CEO of The Internet Association Michael Beckerman told Reuters. "Policymakers must understand that the preservation of that freedom is essential to the vitality of the Internet itself and the resulting economic prosperity."
According to the announcement, the Association will work to educate policymakers on the Internet’s potential impact on job creation, commerce and the global economy.
The Association said it will work to defend Internet freedoms from any constrictive policies, like the proposed Stop Online Piracy Act that buckled beneath a wave of protest from most internet companies earlier this year. “SOPA and PIPA came almost out of nowhere and would have had a devastating impact,” Beckerman said.
While older tech companies (including Microsoft) have been lobbying in Washington for some time now, Facebook and Google are just two examples of relatively younger tech companies that reportedly have been eager to up their presence on Capitol Hill.