Category Archives: Press Room

Recent press releases issued by Media Alliance. Sometimes we’ll post newspaper, radio and broadcast interviews here as well.

Open Vallejo Podcast: Tiny Constables

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This Open Vallejo podcast focuses on the City of Vallejo’s purchase of a cell site simulator or stingray, a dangerous and expensive piece of surveillance equipment used to track the location of a cell phone by impersonating a cell phone tower.

Oakland Privacy, the Bay Area’s ant-surveillance coalition, sued the City of Vallejo to enforce state law and require the City to allow public comment and a City Council vote on the device’s usage policy.

MA ED Tracy Rosenberg is a contributor to this edition of the Open Vallejo podcast entitled “Tiny Constables.

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The Robber Barons of Big Tech

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by Veronica Irwin. Published in SF Weekly.

Remember when we thought we were going to make the world a better place?

In the city where Jello Biafra once ran for mayor on a platform that would have required businessmen to wear clown suits, recently graduated engineers arrived wearing jeans and pocket-tees. Like the countercultural icons who came before them, they thumbed their collective noses at the stuffy protocols that had come to dominate the white collar workforce. While New York’s business elite had members-only clubs, local tech CEOs kept a kegerator in the office — right next to the ping-pong table and bean bag chair lounge. The Silicon Valley “campus,” complete with outdoor shopping centers and arcades, replaced the corporate headquarters, and open floor plans dismantled the sterile grid of cubicles.

This was the Left Coast. On this side of the country, the son of a teen mom and a cuban immigrant could rise to become the world’s first trillionaire and a couple of bearded, shaggy college dropouts could build a world-conquering personal computer company while pledging to Think Different.

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Good Riddance: Tech Worker’s Flight From SF is a Relief to Some Advocates

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by David Ingram. Originally published on nbcnews.com.

SAN FRANCISCO — When Chirag Bhakta saw a headline recently that said tech workers were fleeing San Francisco, he had a quick reaction: “Good riddance.”

Bhakta, a San Francisco native and tenant organizer for affordable housing nonprofit Mission Housing, is well-versed in the seismic impact that the growth of the tech industry has had on the city. As software companies expanded over the past decade, they drew thousands of well-off newcomers who bid up rents and remade the city’s economy and culture.

He said the sudden departure of many tech workers and executives — often to less expensive, rural areas where they can telecommute during the coronavirus pandemic — reveals that their relationship with San Francisco was “transactional” all along.

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S.F. Supes Again Condemn Zuckerberg’s Name on City General Hospital

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by Michael Cabanatuan. Originally published in SF Chronicle

A committee of San Francisco supervisors on Thursday condemned the naming of San Francisco General Hospital for Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg, citing a long list of grievances against the social media giant and claiming its practices endanger public health.

The three-member Government Audit and Oversight Committee voted to condemn the hospital’s name and to develop a better policy for future naming of public facilities. The resolution, which carries no legal mandates, was mostly a statement of opinion by the board — and a chance to bash Facebook. The board is constrained in its contract with Zuckerberg in removing his name from the hospital.

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Coronavirus Sparks New Fight Over Privacy Law

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By Dustin Gardiner originally printed in San Francisco Chronicle

California Attorney General Xavier Becerra’s office is gearing up to enforce the state’s landmark internet privacy law, despite pleas from business groups that say they aren’t ready because of the coronavirus pandemic.

The California Consumer Privacy Act gives people the power to tell companies not to sell their personal data and to demand they delete the information altogether. The law took effect Jan. 1, but enforcement was delayed until July 1 to give businesses time to prepare for a mountain of data requests from their customers.

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California AG submits New Privacy Rules at Deadline

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Originally published in Communications Daily on June 3

“No changes from the last draft is good and bad, emailed Media Alliance Executive Director Tracy Rosenberg. Privacy advocates are glad the AG rejected many business requests that would have weakened CCPA but “disappointed that a few changes we recommended were not incorporated, including to accept browser do-not-track requests as opt outs.”

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Supervisors Approve Resolution To Condemn Naming Of Hospital After Mark Zuckerberg

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originally published on SFGate.com

San Francisco supervisors voted 10-1 in approval of a resolution condemning the naming of Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital after Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg.

The resolution, authored by Supervisor Gordon Mar, urges the city to establish clear standards for naming rights for public institutions and properties, reserving those rights only for organizations that align with the city’s values.

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