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Uber settles lawsuit | TECH(feed)

Computerworld | Mar 13, 2019

Uber settled a years-old lawsuit ahead of its I.P.O., the British government unveils a report suggesting stricter regulation of the tech industry and we reveal how the financial industry can apply blockchain… but it’s not cryptocurrency.

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hey everyone welcome back to tech feed i’m juliet beauchamp. today we’re looking at proposed antitrust measures in the u-k, uber settling a drawn out lawsuit and how blockchain may disrupt the finance industry--but maybe not in the way you think. stick around.

the british government wants to crack down on big tech, according to a report order by the u-k’s top treasury official. the report focused on the apparent need to strengthen antitrust laws and encourage competition. it also called for more rules regarding acquisition. an antitrust law overhaul would lead to more choice for consumers and encourage innovation, according to the report. of course, any antitrust laws would need to be reviewed and passed by parliament. this u-k report is part of a larger trend of governments attempting to regulate the previously little-regulated tech industry. the e-u of course has slapped giants such as google and amazon with fines for violating antitrust laws and passed g-d-p-r to enforce stricter user privacy. governments and politicians in india, france, germany and the united states have toyed with and/or enforced rules to more strictly regulate the tech industry.

there may be a new use case for blockchain in the finance industry--but it doesn’t necessarily relate to cryptocurrency. swift, which is the organization behind many of the world’s international money and security transfers, said it will deploy a blockchain proof-of-concept in the asia pacific region to aide its clients’ shareholders voting process. distributed ledger technology will make it easy and secure for shareholders to vote on corporate decisions electronically. the proof of concept will roll out during the first half of this year.

and ahead of plans to go public, uber has settled a years-old lawsuit with some of its drivers. the suit was filed in 2013 and represents some drivers in the states of california and massachusetts who wished to be recognized as uber employees rather than as independent contractors. uber agreed to pay the drivers 20 million dollars, but drivers will remain independent contractors. uber also pledged to make its driver removal process more transparent. the attorney representing the drivers said the settlement was “substantial.” she estimates each driver will receive about 37 cents per mile driven with uber. uber originally settled this suit in 2016, but a federal judge threw it out. it’s expected that uber will offer its drivers a chance to buy shares in the company at its i-p-o.

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