Jun 1, 2017

Facebook rejects proposal to examine employee pay gaps

Matt Rourke / AP

At its annual meeting on Thursday, Facebook shareholders rejected a proposal that the company prepare a report on employee pay across gender and ethnicity.

Facebook's board, which recommended against the proposal, argued that it already has systems in place to combat pay inequality. Arjuna Capital, which submitted the idea, says that third-party data suggests there are still gaps.

Why it matters: Along with hiring, pay gaps have also become a hot topic in Silicon Valley's conversation about diversity. Google is currently embroiled in a court battle over allegations that it's not paying female employees as much as men. Meanwhile, Salesforce has now audited its employee pay two years in a row, and spent $6 million to fill in the gaps, according to the company.

Other highlights from the shareholder meeting:

  • New capital structure: Facebook's plan to restructure in order for CEO Mark Zuckerberg to retain control is still delayed by a lawsuit, so not expected before 2018 at the earliest, said the company.
  • Fake news: The company plans to approach the issue similarly to spam, and wants to make it easier for users to access a spectrum of viewpoints.
  • Oculus: Facebook doesn't plan on making much profit from its Oculus hardware in the next few years—instead it's focused on building content and software and making virtual reality tech as widely available as possible.
  • China: The company wants to reach people in China, but it's taking its time to figure how to best do this.

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The big picture: COVID-19 has now killed at least 1,775 people and infected more than 70,000 others, mostly in mainland China. There are some signs that new cases are growing at a slower rate now, although the World Health Organization said Monday it's "too early to tell" if this will continue.

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Apple CEO Tim Cook

Apple issued a rare earnings warning on Monday, saying it would not meet quarterly revenue expectations due to the impact of the coronavirus, which will limit iPhone production and limit product demand in China.

Why it matters: Lots of companies rely on China for production, but unlike most U.S. tech companies, Apple also gets a significant chunk of its revenue from sales in China.

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The Trump administration wants to reboot federal executions, pointing to a 16-year lapse, but Pew Research reports the government has only executed three people since 1963.

The big picture: Nearly all executions in the U.S. are done by states. Even those have been steadily dropping for two decades, per the Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS) — marking a downward trend for all executions in the country.