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City launches COVID-19 self-reporting tool … Amazon fires worker who organized strike over coronavirus response … and more of today’s tech news

Mayor Bill de Blasio assists in picking up the United Nation's donation of 250,000 face masks. | Ed Reed/Mayoral Photography Office
The Latest

NYC launches COVID-19 self-reporting tool
New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio’s administration announced the NYC COVID-19 Engagement Portal – an attempt to let the city communicate directly with affected residents and build a broader picture of the coronavirus’s spread across the city. (City & State)

Amazon fires worker who organized strike over coronavirus response
Amazon has fired Chris Smalls, the employee at its Staten Island warehouse who organized a walkout on Monday to demand greater protections from the company amid the coronavirus outbreak. (New York Post)

AG James condemns Amazon’s firing of protester
New York Attorney General Letitia James spoke out Monday against Amazon's decision to fire Smalls the same day he helped organize a strike to protest the company's response to the coronavirus. (Business Insider)

James looks into Zoom’s privacy practices
Zoom, the videoconferencing app whose traffic has surged during the coronavirus pandemic, is under scrutiny by the office of Attorney General James for its data privacy and security practices. (The New York Times)

Via gets $200M investment
Exor, the holding company of Italy’s Agnelli family, is investing $200 million in New York-based ride-share company Via, which would mark the company’s first big foray into the technology sector. (The Wall Street Journal)

CUNY scrambles to make online learning transition
The City University of New York is rushing to distribute as many as 30,000 computers to students, after delaying online classes designed to keep coursework going after coronavirus-prompted campus shutdowns. (The City)

Instacart and Amazon workers stay home in protest
Some delivery and supermarket workers – including those for Amazon and the delivery app Instacart – are staying home to draw attention to requests for better pay and added protections against the risks they face as the coronavirus pandemic intensifies. (The Journal)

GE workers demand to make ventilators
On Monday, General Electric factory workers launched two separate protests demanding that the company convert its jet engine factories to make ventilators – the first at GE’s Lynn, Massachusetts aviation facility, and the second at its Boston headquarters. (Vice

FCC chief proposes $200M telehealth program to fight coronavirus
Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai has proposed using $200 million from the government stimulus package for a telehealth program to fight the coronavirus pandemic. (The Hill)


Is your grocery delivery worth a worker’s life?
Some companies are not providing their workers with gloves or hand sanitizer, and some are even prohibiting employees from wearing masks for fear of frightening customers. As a result, many workers feel they’re putting their lives on the line each day. (Steven Greenhouse, The Times)


Is it really a strike if Instacart workers aren’t employees?
Instacart strikes don’t look like teacher strikes or auto worker strikes. There is no picket line, no walkout, no factory left idle. So it is hard to tell how many Instacart workers in Western New York are participating in the strike, which began Monday. (The Buffalo News)

Civil liberties advocates conflicted over coronavirus surveillance
The coronavirus pandemic, which has grown to over 740,000 cases and 35,000 deaths around the world, has been so singular an event that even some staunch advocates for civil liberties say they’re willing to accept previously unthinkable surveillance measures. (BuzzFeed News)


New York-based Meetup breaks off from WeWork
Meetup, the social networking platform designed to connect people in person, is being spun out from shared office space provider WeWork in a sale to AlleyCorp and other private investors for an undisclosed sum. (Techcrunch)

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