Showing 37 results for:


by Topic

All results

Did You Know A Congo Child Labor Case Regarding Cobalt Mining Ended With 5 Tech Giants Being Absolved Of Wrongdoing?

The Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) is among the countries facing a humanitarian crisis. The U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) reported that it’s not only experiencing one of the world’s longest humanitarian crises but also one of the most complex. A most prevalent issue in the DRC is child labor. According to the U.S. Department of Labor, nearly 25,000 children work in cobalt mines. Despite the alarming rate of exploitation, a case in the U.S. regarding the matter has ended with the defendants not found at fault. Previously, in 2022, Apple, Alphabet Inc. (Google), Dell, Microsoft, and Tesla were said to have been “knowingly benefiting from and aiding and abetting the cruel and brutal use of young children in the Democratic Republic of Congo to mine cobalt,” according to ABC News. However, in March 2024, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia found the five tech giants not liable due to only having an “ordinary buyer-seller transaction” with...

Ngozi Nwanji

May 21, 2024

Microsoft Appoints Sarah Bond As The New President Of Xbox, Making Her The First Black Woman In The Role At A Major Gaming Company

Microsoft has appointed a new leader to take charge of the future of one of the top brands it owns.

Ngozi Nwanji

Nov 1, 2023

The Harlem Globetrotters Join Microsoft To Launch A Coding Curriculum Designed For Black And Brown Youth

The Harlem Globetrotters are bringing their dynamic flair and skill to tech education.

Ngozi Nwanji

Oct 24, 2023

Op-Ed: Inclusion Must Define Technology’s Future

In 1986, the Commodore 64 had become the bestselling single personal computer model of all time. More than 17 million were sold, including one to my parents. I remember the C64 and its place of prominence in the living room of our home in Cleveland, OH. It was there even when there wasn’t any furniture (And I was on it a lot). That Commodore 64 was my first real exposure to computing and it helped catalyze my interest in technology. A few years after college I dove into startup life, and from there I went on to build a career in cybersecurity, to become a CEO, and it all led me to my role today, which is to help Microsoft identify the partnerships and investments that will shape the future and tackle some of the world’s greatest challenges. Unfortunately, many people do not have access to technology, even in 2023. The Pew Research Center estimates that today in America, four out of ten low-income households are without computing devices of any kind. A 2022 National Urban League...

How LVRN's Amber Grimes Took A Risk, Left College, And Became A Force In The Music Industry

It’s no secret that Love Renaissance (LVRN) has been taking over when it comes to the R&B genre.

Ngozi Nwanji

Dec 9, 2022

7 Keys to Building a Successful Startup: How Microsoft for Startups Is Moving the Needle for Black Founders

With millions of new businesses started by Black founders, it’s more important than ever to connect visionaries in our community with the resources to turn ideas into profitable opportunities. Microsoft has created a solution to empower more startup founders at any stage with tools for success. Microsoft for Startups Founders Hub is a digital platform to connect startup founders with the resources, mentorship and tools to go from product ideation, to launch, to long-term expansion. Equipped with free Microsoft tools, platforms and resources, founders can design businesses and products that run more efficiently from the ground up. Microsoft for Startups Founders Hub is democratizing innovation to help create a startup world that reflects the world around us by being open to all. By offering resources and tools, Founders Hub is leveling the playing field by giving more Black founders the opportunity to be successful without needing personal connections to Silicon Valley. Here are our...

Mahlet Yared

Jul 25, 2022

Gavin Mathieu Was Exposed To Design By Using Microsoft Paint As A Child — Now, He's Launched A Clothing Collection With The Company

Microsoft is taking its talents to the clothing industry, thanks to the latest partnership with Gavin Mathieu. While the leading technology company is known for its years of experience in the game, producing all of the latest gadgets, they are shaking things up a bit with the new “Hardwear” clothing line created by Mathieu. He is known for carving his own lane as a streetwear designer, and now he’s bringing those refreshing looks to the company. As someone who credits some of his earliest work as a graphic designer to Microsoft Paint, this collaboration was the perfect fit for Mathieu. “It means a lot to know that a brand that I have respected for so many years also respects my work. I was first exposed to design using Microsoft Paint on my Pop’s computer growing up,” he said in an exclusive interview with AfroTech. “This foundation allowed me to become a self-taught designer like so many other successful creatives. When I first started out, I told everyone that I wanted to create a...

Shanique Yates

Jul 14, 2022

Facebook & More Reach Out After Job Seeker's Transparent Post Goes Viral, 'Today, I Cried'

A moment of frustration and despair led Carah Lockett to LinkedIn, where she would write a viral post garnering half a million views from job recruiters and users who shared similar sentiments. Amidst the pandemic, many reconsidered their current job positions as transitional periods trickled into the workforce economy. The same went for Lockett, who would bravely quit her most recent Navy Federal Credit Union job in August 2021. “There was a lack of growth for me. I want to know that my efforts are working towards something — that there’s an end goal in mind,” she told AfroTech. “Unfortunately working in that branch, I was not able to move up in the way that I wanted to.” Lockett joins a cohort of millennials who have tapped into “The Great Resignation.” Approximately 63 percent of millennials are on the search for new employment opportunities, according to Bankrate’s August jobseeker survey. A push for higher pay is just one factor contributing to the growing quitting spree. The...

Samantha Dorisca

Oct 29, 2021

HBCU Graduate Becomes The First Recipient To Access Microsoft's $50M Capital Fund

In September, Microsoft selected the first small business to receive $50 million in capital as a part of its latest initiative to support small businesses. Now, CourMed — a healthcare solution concierge delivery service founded by a Historically Black College and University (HBCU) graduate — is officially the first recipient. View this post on Instagram A post shared by CourMed® (@courmed) “The fund means a great deal to us as a startup,” said founder and CEO Derrick L. Miles in an interview with Yahoo!Finance. “It gives us the opportunity to go out and recruit A players. I believe that there’s a competitive advantage in the startup marketplace, and it’s the team who has the most A players who’s going to eventually win. So it’ll give us an opportunity to recruit marketing, IT, and sales executives to help us move a lot quicker.” Not only will Miles receive access to funding that is in the form of zero-interest loans from the computer company’s banking partner, but as an official...

Shanique Yates

Oct 11, 2021

Xbox's Cierra McDonald Proves Young Black Girls Can See Themselves Within the Gaming Industry

When it comes to the gaming industry, oftentimes Black women are completely left out of the conversation, but not Cierra McDonald. McDonald has worked within the Xbox organization for 13 years and has experience in everything from billing to achievements to documentations. For her, the love of gaming started at a young age when she was first introduced to the world of technology by purchasing a floppy disc of Monkey Island. From there, she learned to navigate DOS through the installation process and the rest is history! Now, as the Principal Program Manager for Xbox at Microsoft, McDonald is on a mission to shift the narrative of Black female characters in the gaming industry. “I think too often folks start with ‘male’ and ‘white’ as the default when envisioning game characters or stories, even if it’s not intentional or done explicitly,” said McDonald in an email interview with AfroTech. “So, that becomes the baseline. When they want to add a female character, she is likely created...

Shanique Yates

Mar 25, 2021

Atlanta's Black Techies Are Cultivating a Space to Compete With Silicon Valley's Tech Giants

Silicon Valley’s tech giants are looking to prioritize diversity in their companies, and so they’re setting their sights on Atlanta’s hub of Black talent populating the industry. In light of last summer’s nationwide Black Lives Matter protests, big-name American corporations scrambled to pledge their support toward more diversity, equity, and inclusion —  common-use terms that have become core values more popular than ever before. Among these corporations, the tech world also realized they had a major diversity problem to fix. As a result, companies like Microsoft, Airbnb, Apple and Google all announced expansion plans or major investments in Atlanta, AJC reports. Why some may ask? Simply put, Atlanta has historically been known for being a majority Black city and now it’s emerging as tech’s leading driver of economic growth as Black techies migrate to the city. “People are walking around Silicon Valley and other cities trying to solve diversity, but those aren’t diverse cities to...

Njera Perkins

Mar 7, 2021

Black-Led Be Nimble Foundation Receives $300K Grant From Microsoft to Launch Upskiling Program

Be Nimble Foundation has received a $300,000 grant from Microsoft to launch an upskilling program for Black tech professionals, according to a press release. The foundation is an Indianapolis-based social enterprise helping to build inclusive tech ecosystems. Microsoft awarded Be Nimble Foundation the grant as part of its community skills program, a commitment it made to invest $15 million over three years into 50 nonprofits working to increase skill development and economic opportunities. The program has a focus on accelerating Black-led nonprofits providing digital skills and workforce development to Black communities, a press release states. “Last June, our CEO Satya Nadella committed Microsoft to put its data, technology, and partnerships to work to help improve the lives of Black and African American people across the country,” said Kate Behncken, VP and lead of Microsoft Philanthropies, in a statement. “We’re proud to partner with Be Nimble Foundation, led by and serving Black...

Michelai Graham

Mar 3, 2021

Xbox Announces Black History Month Initiatives, Aims to Build a More Inclusive Gaming Community

Xbox is committed to building the most inclusive gaming community on the planet. In an announcement, the gaming system revealed it’s celebrating Black History Month by offering gaming experiences that highlight the contributions of influential Black developers and creators while also raising awareness around causes pertaining to Black communities. The company wrote in a statement: “We believe that small actions from members of the Xbox community can lead to lasting change in the industry, such as speaking up to report and callout racist remarks, learning about Black history and culture, and empowering Black-owned businesses and inclusive creators. By amplifying Black voices, partnering with more Black creators, and continuing to address racial injustice, we strive to contribute to real change in our industry. We are committed to supporting Black audiences across the globe through programs that focus on issues relevant to them.” In June, Team Xbox and the Xbox player community came...

Shanique Yates

Feb 2, 2021

Microsoft, Warner Bros., Xbox, LeBron James Launch Gaming and Coding Education Campaign For 'Space Jam 2'

Microsoft and Warner Bros. are kicking off an all-star brand partnership with Xbox and NBA superstar LeBron James. The joint campaign is meant to celebrate gaming and coding education, as well as the anticipated release of James’ upcoming 2021 film, “Space Jam: A New Legacy.” In addition to Xbox and James, the campaign launch recruits the film’s characters like Bugs Bunny and the rest of the Looney Tunes Tune Squad to amplify coding education in the gaming world and create an original Xbox arcade-style video game that draws inspiration from the movie, a news release shares. The announcement also shares that Microsoft Stores are helping beginner coders jump-start their creativity by hosting free, one-of-a-kind “Space Jam: A New Legacy”-themed virtual workshops on video game creation. Students will be able to build a playable-prototype of a video game utilizing block-based coding on the MakeCode Arcade platform, while also learning more about the skills and STEAM careers involved in...

Njera Perkins

Dec 18, 2020

This Black-Owned Tele-Pharmacy Company is Changing the Future of Medicine

Much of the healthcare industry has turned virtual and online since the widespread outbreak of COVID-19, leaving many companies with the task of finding safe solutions to still serve their clients and patients. As virtual health looks to gain momentum in the foreseeable future, tele-pharmacy startup CourMed is focusing on centering itself at the intersection of tech and healthcare. According to theGrio , the mobile application utilizes enterprise software to crowdsource medical supply deliveries from healthcare providers to patients safely and directly to their own homes. Launched in 2018, the startup targets patients who are 55 and older, as it aims to deliver items such as prescription meds, vitamins, supplements, CBD oil, home medical supplies, and more in addition to being a source of support. Prior to the pandemic, the demand for virtual health was low compared to where we find ourselves now as we seek an influx of virtual methods during social distancing, and CourMed is now...

Njera Perkins

Aug 28, 2020