Seattle will issue cease-and-desist to ride-sharing companies if deal can’t be reached

Seattle will issue a ceast-and-desist letter to app-based transportation startups like UberX, Lyft and Sidecar if an agreement between the companies, taxi drivers and city leaders cannot be made by the end of May. In an interview with GeekWire today, Seattle Mayor Ed Murray said that he will spend the next 45 days working with stakeholders… Read More


Seattle ride-sharing regulations suspended; Mayor wants to negotiate with stakeholders

Seattle’s ride-sharing controversy just took an unexpected turn. A coalition group has collected enough signatures to suspend a newly-passed ordinance regulating companies like UberX and Lyft, and now Mayor Ed Murray wants to work with all stakeholders to reach a new agreement. The group, which received more than $400,000 in donations from Uber, Lyft and Sidecar, submitted more than… Read More

Rich Barton

Rich Barton, Reid Hoffman, Salman Khan and others named Presidential Ambassadors for Global Entrepreneurship

The U.S. Department of Commerce today announced 11 members of its Presidential Ambassadors for Global Entrepreneurship program, a new effort designed to spark entrepreneurial activity worldwide. In some ways, the program is kind of like a Peace Corps for business. “America’s entrepreneurial spirit has always been a key driver of our economic growth and success,” said Secretary… Read More


A mixed bag for tech in Olympia: Crowdfunding bill passes, R&D tax credits set to expire

The Washington state Legislature completed its session on time March 13 after 60 days. Lawmakers passed a supplemental operating budget that added more than $100 million to K-12 schools, approved a crowdfunding bill, added $1 million each for computer science enrollments at Central Washington University and Eastern Washington University, but allowed the high-tech tax incentives… Read More


Zach Galifianakis to President Obama: Why would you get the guy who created the Zune to make your Web site?

Between Two Ferns with Zach Galifianakis: President Barack Obama from President Barack Obama This is pretty hilarious stuff. President Barack Obama goes toe-to-toe with comedian Zach Galifianakis on “Between Two Ferns” — with the two shooting from the hip as they touch on everything from gay marriage to football to Bradley Cooper. The best part is when Galifianakis… Read More

Lyft supporters gather at a City Hall rally in February.

House of Cars: Lessons in politics from Seattle’s ridesharing saga

In this corner: We have a young, innovative company that says it’s changing the playing field, and making life better for everyone through innovation. This company’s opponents say it isn’t playing fair. In that corner: We have the government agency responsible for overseeing the playing field. The company’s opponents are calling on this agency to do something…. Read More

Wires. Photo via Hallieg

Commentary: Four reasons why Google fiber will never come to Seattle

Google is bringing high speed fiber broadband networks to homes and businesses in three cities – Kansas City, Austin and Provo. In February, it announced 34 more cities it will approach for building fiber – Portland, Phoenix, Atlanta and more. But not Seattle. And Seattle won’t be making Google’s list anytime soon. The “Seattle Process” and a balky… Read More


Former President Bill Clinton at Microsoft SharePoint event: Technological change has set stage for a new global world

President Bill Clinton today keynoted the SharePoint Conference in Las Vegas, thanking the roomful of Microsofties for their longstanding support of the Clinton Foundation and spelling out a future in which technology can help solve global problems. The key, he said, is that technology be used for good, not ill. “Technology is liberating people, empowering… Read More


Geek politics: Microsofties to battle for Congressional seat

This could turn out to be an interesting political race to watch, and it speaks to the growing power of the technology industry in Washington state. Two former Microsoft employees are set to face off in a political battle this fall for the seat in Washington’s First Congressional District. Suzan DelBene — a 52-year-old former… Read More


GeekWire Radio: Tesla expansion, ride-sharing and the politics of technology

We’ve been covering a lot of stories lately at the intersection of technology and politics, including the recent legislation impacting Tesla’s expansion in Washington state, and the ongoing debate over the regulation of Uber, Lyft, Sidecar and other alternative transportation services in Seattle. And the state Legislature is in full swing in Olympia, with a… Read More


Tesla wins battle against auto dealers in Washington state, but future rivals are screwed

Electric car maker Tesla has secured a provision in the Washington state Legislature allowing the company to open as many additional stores as it wants in the state — a hard-fought victory against traditional auto dealers who attempted to block the company’s expansion. However, the way the legislation has been rewritten, the exception applies only… Read More


Tesla fans rally against proposed store ban; Records show auto dealers’ contributions to bill sponsors

Expect to see plenty of electric cars on the roads in Olympia, Wash., this morning. Tesla supporters are gathering at the state Capitol to rally against legislation that would prevent the electric-car manufacturer from opening additional stores or service centers in Washington state. The proposed restrictions, first reported by GeekWire last week, have been criticized… Read More


Seattle delays vote on ride-sharing cap, council member says they need time to ‘get the decision right’

A Seattle City Council committee will delay a scheduled vote on one of the key elements in proposed regulations for ride-sharing companies such as Uber, Lyft and Sidecar. In a message on Facebook, council member Sally Clark — Chair of the Committee for Taxi, For-hire, and Limousine Regulations — wrote: Not that anyone is paying attention to this… Read More


Stopped in its tracks? Tesla faces ban on new stores in Washington state

Legislation now under consideration in Washington state would effectively prevent Tesla Motors from opening new stores in the state beyond its existing locations in the Seattle region — the latest development in the electric car maker’s national struggle against the traditional auto dealership model. Tesla is vowing to fight the legislation, calling it an effort… Read More


Chart: These 10 tech giants spent millions lobbying in D.C.

The tech industry is boosting its spending in Washington D.C., looking to grease the wheels of democracy and promote agendas that will benefit their corporations. A new report from Consumer Watchdog shows the top spending tech firms in terms of lobbying efforts, with AT&T leading in the telecommunications arena and Google coming in as the… Read More


Online privacy regulation on the legislative docket: What’s the proper role for government?

The Washington state legislature will convene next Monday for its annual session.  The legislature will not pass a big operating budget this year in the 60-day session, but it will make some adjustments based on the state’s current economy and tax revenue collections. The state Economic and Revenue Forecast Council — the agency charged with making… Read More

Nick Licata and Chris DeVore

Nick Licata vs. Chris DeVore: A debate over government support of startups in Seattle

Well, it’s not quite the “Rumble in the Jungle.” But Founder’s Co-op general partner Chris DeVore and Seattle City Councilmember Nick Licata recently were brought together by the online news site Crosscut to debate the issues around the Startup Seattle Initiative. As you may recall, Licata attempted to torpedo the efforts to create a $151,000… Read More


Commentary: What’s at stake in Seattle’s ride-sharing debate

Last Friday, a Seattle City Council committee met to discuss how to regulate ride-sharing services that have emerged in the last few years as alternatives to taxis and other for hire vehicle services.  Companies like Lyft, Sidecar and Uber/Uber-X are being targeted as “unregulated” services. This 57-page draft ordinance was the centerpiece of the Dec…. Read More

Nathan Myhrvold

Intellectual Ventures reveals list of 33,000 patents, in move toward (partial) transparency

Intellectual Ventures, under increasing pressure to be more transparent about its patent holdings, this morning released a searchable list of more than 33,000 of its patents — about 82 percent of the nearly 40,000 patents that the company makes available for sale, license and other commercial activities. The list, also available as a downloadable spreadsheet,… Read More


Commentary: Here are the problems with Seattle’s Startup Initiative

Editor’s Note: Nick Licata is a Seattle City Councilmember. Recently, a Seattle Times editorial lauded the Seattle City Council for requiring clear goals, measurable outcomes, effectiveness and accountability standards for funding projects in our 2014 budget. For the most part, we accomplished that this year. But one exception struck me as failing to meet all of… Read More