The political landscape just became much more interesting. The head of Facebook, Mark Zuckerberg and leaders from Google and various other tech companies are announcing the start of their new political advocacy group; that group is called FWD.us. What exactly will this new group do?
The main focus of the political advocacy group will center around keeping the American workforce competitive. FWD.us is comprised of individuals form all different political ideologies, so the group will work towards bipartisan policies and solutions. A team of Democrats and Republicans heads up to organizations Washington, D.C., office. This kind of bipartisan advocacy group is encouraging, hopefully it is harbinger of more cooperation in Washington and less stagnation. Zuckerberg discusses his involvement with the group in Thursday’s Washington Post. FWD.us will focus its energies first on making sure comprehensive immigration reform passes. Zuckerbebrg discusses the importance college education will play in strengthening the American workforce and how that cannot be achieved with today’s immigration policies. He calls for a new approach to immigration and job creation, which he says must include the following:
- Comprehensive immigration reform that begins with effective border security, allows a path to citizenship and lets us attract the most talented and hardest-working people, no matter where they were born.
- Higher standards and accountability in schools, support for good teachers and a much greater focus on learning about science, technology, engineering and math.
- Investment in breakthrough discoveries in scientific research and assurance that the benefits of the inventions belong to the public and not just to the few.
Supporters of FWD.us include tech people from Dropbox, LinkedIn, Airbnb, Netflix, and Yelp, thelist goes on. The group will operate as a 501(c)(4) which means it can receive unlimited campaign contributions. In addition to mobilizing members outside of the tech community, the president of FWD.us Joe Green wants to mobilize within the tech community as well. It's an important move for a community long considered to be politically disengaged.
So should people involved in the tech community become this politically involved? This advocacy group is sure to ruffle some feathers, but it’s actually a great thing. How? These are the companies that are creating jobs in America. Not only are they the companies creating jobs in this economy, but those jobs are resilient to economic fluctuations. Our ‘tech brain capital’ if you will is one of the best exports America has to offer. If we wish to maintain our competitiveness than we need to address the issues that FWD.us seeks to address. Who better to mobilize a social-media obsessed country than the founders social media?