I recently sent an email to a well-respected journalist cursing and belittling her story. A friend of mine is a top publisher of a newspaper, who recently emailed his entire newsroom berating their efforts. A school teacher I know recently sent an email attacking a student.
What do we all have in common? We were victims of e-Impersonation. Yes, e-Impersonation. That is where someone creates a fake email account, using your name and email address, and pretends to be you. It’s damaging. It’s ugly. But sadly, currently in California, it’s not necessarily illegal.
As a recent San Jose Mercury News editorial pointed out – “Impersonating someone with the intent to harm, intimidate, threaten or defraud is illegal in California – except when it’s done online.” That’s because existing state law, written in 1872, didn’t anticipate the existence of Facebook, MySpace or other internet sites.
Thanks to the determined leadership of Silicon Valley’s own State Senator Joe Simitian, this online abuse through e-Impersonation may soon be against the law. His bill, SB 1411, passed the State Senate by a near unanimous vote and is now moving through the Assembly. If you have been a victim of e-Impersonation, let me or Senator Simitian know. If you have participated in such inappropriate behavior – stop. Your actions will soon be against the law.
With the Gulf oil spill continuing to poison America’s coastline, I took my first spin in Toyota’s new demonstration model Plug-In Hybrid Prius. This week, the Silicon Valley Leadership Group and Toyota announced an 18-month partnership that allows the Leadership Group to drive the first three Plug-In Hybrid Prius’ in all of North America during the next 18 months. These innovative new cars will be released in the marketplace in 2012.
Thanks to Coulomb Technologies, we have charging stations sprouting up across America to make this transportation transition possible.
The choice was simple – with 41 percent of the Bay Area’s greenhouse gases generated by our daily transportation decisions, I literally hold the key to our green economy future in my hands. But it means tossing away the key to an economy based on fossil fuels and high gas prices. So, Tuesday, in fine Silicon Valley tradition, I placed my old car on Craig’s List and drove away in my new plug-in Prius.
A clean environment and a green economy. Let’s drive solutions that offer both. Learn more at our Silicon Valley Leadership Group web site at svlg.org.
In 150 days, Jerry Brown or Meg Whitman will be elected Governor of California, the eighth largest economy in the world.
With California in crisis, and our great state at a crossroads, we need straight talk and solid solutions from each of these intelligent and articulate candidates. From the perspective of the Silicon Valley Leadership Group, we will be asking each candidate the following questions:
· Mr. Brown and Ms. Whitman, how will you solve our State’s perennial budget deficit?
· How will you ensure that California is “Open for Business” to attract and retain employers so that we shrink California’s 12.6 percent unemployment rate?
· How will you grow the Innovation, Clean & Green Tech sectors to both strengthen our economy and enhance our environment?
· How will you adequately fund our schools: Pre-K, K-12 and Higher Ed, while also insisting on results worthy of our kids?
· How will you re-build a teetering transportation system?
Congratulations to both Meg Whitman and Jerry Brown for their success in the primary election. Now to the real task; tell us how you will lead the Golden State back to greatness. In Silicon Valley, we don’t care about attacks about who is too far left or too far right. We want solid solutions that move California forward.
We hear it all the time, “Sacramento is broken.” Those saying it often throw up their hands, as if to say that the problem is too big to fix.
Yes, the challenges are great, but California voters can take a big step forward to fix Sacramento by passing Proposition 14, the Open Primary on the June 8 ballot.
California’s current primary election system is dominated by party activists and entrenched special interests, forcing candidates to run to the political extremes. This leads to a legislature in which common ground solutions are often eschewed in favor of ideological party purity.
Under Proposition 14, candidates would have to appeal to a broad electorate, because every primary voter would have the opportunity to vote for any candidate, regardless of party affiliation. This structure – similar to what we use to elect city council members – would create room for a new generation of problem-solvers in the legislature.
That’s why business leaders who comprise the Silicon Valley Leadership Group back Proposition 14. We are Democrats, Republicans and Independents. But first and foremost, we are Californians. And we are dedicated to getting our state back on track. Please – join us. For more information, visit svlg.org.