Amazon and Apple have not signed up to the new French initiative to get global tech giants to comply with principles that include the fair payment of taxes while publicly acknowledging that fact. Government officials confirmed this refusal on Monday.
Emmanuel Macron, the French president, has been working for years to convince tech giants into working with governments on problems like hate speech online, privacy, and taxes.
There has been public outcry regarding how high these tech giants’ fortunes soared in the middle of a pandemic.
Macron’s advisers say that the president is asking the tech companies to sign up to a new initiative named “Tech for Good Call,” which outlines what the post-COVID-19 world will look like.
The French government released a list containing the names of 75 executives in tech companies that signed up to the initiative that includes Sundar Pichai (Google’s CEO), Mark Zuckerberg (Facebook), and Microsoft’s President Brad Smith.
Notably, Amazon and Apple were absent from the list. So far, Apple has declined to comment as talks with the company are ongoing. Amazon flat-out refused to participate in the initiative. Their representative did not reply to a request for comment.
Tackling the tension between tech and government
During a press briefing, a presidential adviser said that this initiative’s aim is also about clearly showing who has decided to play ball and align with the public for the good of all and those who are staying out of the movement.
Leading execs in tech attended the ‘Tech for Good’ summit hosted by Macron in 2008, in the Elysee Palace. The summit led to joint efforts to tackle issues that have brought tension between Big Tech and the government.
Those aligned with the movement are signatories that commit to working for the good of all.