Hillicon Valley — Landmark data privacy bill inches forward

·4 min read

A landmark comprehensive data bill advanced out of the House Energy and Commerce Committee Wednesday with broad bipartisan support. But lingering concerns, largely from the California delegation, remain.

This is Hillicon Valley, detailing all you need to know about tech and cyber news from Capitol Hill to Silicon Valley. Send tips to The Hill’s Rebecca Klar, Chris Mills Rodrigo and Ines Kagubare.

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A big day for data privacy in the US

A House panel advanced a comprehensive data privacy bill in a 53-2 bipartisan vote Wednesday, pushing forward legislation that aims to set a national standard for how tech companies collect and use Americans’ data.

The House Energy and Commerce Committee vote on the American Data Privacy and Protection Act (ADPPA) is a significant step forward after years of delay in lawmakers taking action on a federal data privacy law, but there are still hang ups that could complicate the proposal moving forward.

California pushback: Several lawmakers from California voiced concerns about how the federal bill could undermine protections from the state’s data privacy law.
Reps. Anna Eshoo (D-Calif.) and Nanette Diaz Barragán (D-Calif.) were the only votes against advancing the bill.

  • Rep. Doris Matsui (D-Calif.) said she would vote to push it forward to continue discussion but would not vote in favor of passing the bill without additional changes.  

  • “I recognize that this law would be an improvement for much of the country, but I can’t say the same for my constituents and all Californians,” Eshoo said.  

  • Eshoo put forward an amendment that would set the federal standard as a floor, allowing states to go beyond the federal regulations. The amendment gained support from her Democratic California colleagues, but it failed to pass at Wednesday’s markup.

Read more about the proposal and Wednesday’s vote.

Mozilla backs antitrust bill

Mozilla, the company behind the Firefox browser, took out a full-page ad in The Washington Post Wednesday to urge Congress to pass a key antitrust bill that aims to rein in the power of tech giants.

  • The ad is an open letter to Congress calling for lawmakers to immediately pass the American Innovation and Choice Online Act, a bipartisan bill sponsored by Sens. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.) and Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa).  

  • “Our vision for the internet is one that’s private, secure, interoperable, open, accessible, transparent, and balances commercial profit and the public good. But the anticompetitive practices of the biggest tech companies have made it virtually impossible for the billions of people around the world to adopt better tech alternatives,” the open letter of the ad states.

Read more here.

ALBANY AMAZON WORKERS LAUNCH UNION CAMPAIGN

Amazon workers at a warehouse in Albany, N.Y., have launched a bid to unionize after another warehouse on Staten Island successfully unionized back in April.

The group announced this week they were organizing a union, saying in a Twitter post they would have a rally on July 17.

The union said they will be working with the independent Amazon Labor Union and “teaming up with our fellow coworkers in Staten Island.”

“Amazon has exploited us for far too long, and it’s time we become organized to demand better pay, better benefits, and better working conditions,” the union said.

Read more here.

BITS & PIECES

An op-ed to chew on: The US is serving up pork to semiconductor manufacturers

Notable links from around the web:

As crypto swoons, Anthony Scaramucci struggles to keep investors. (The New York Times/ Stephen Gandel)

What Joe Biden declaring a climate emergency would mean for tech (Protocol / Brian Kahn)

Abortion’s legal wars are headed online (Politico / Ruth Reader and Ben Leonard)

🐕 Lighter click: We know Leo was framed

ICYMI: Netflix loses 1M users

Netflix announced Tuesday that it lost its largest number of subscribers in the last three months on Tuesday, though the figure beat its expectations.

According to the streaming service’s quarterly earnings report, Netflix lost
970,000 subscribers, beating its originally forecast 2 million subscriber loss in an April shareholders letter.

Netflix stock jumped after the release of the better-than-expected earnings on Tuesday.

But the company, still reeling after a challenging year and growing competition, said it will push forward with plans to add an ad-supported model and features designed to crack down on account sharing.

Read more here.

That’s it for today, thanks for reading. Check out The Hill’s Technology and Cybersecurity pages for the latest news and coverage. We’ll see you tomorrow.

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