Donald Trump is set to meet with tech leaders this afternoon to discuss how the industry will work with the Republican’s administration. But a group of employees from major technology firms is pledging never to cooperate with one of the President Elect’s most controversial proposals: the implementation of a Muslim registry.
There are currently 411 signatories from companies including Google, IBM, Twitter, and Nvidia on the Never Again.Tech list. The group members describe themselves as “engineers, designers, business executives, and others whose jobs include managing or processing data about people.”
Trump has rarely spoken about his plans for a Muslim database since he won the election, but it’s still on the minds of tech workers who are pledging not to take part in its construction.
"We are choosing to stand in solidarity with Muslim Americans, immigrants, and all people whose lives and livelihoods are threatened by the incoming administration's proposed data collection policies," the pledge reads. "We refuse to build a database of people based on their Constitutionally protected religious beliefs. We refuse to facilitate mass deportations of people the government believes to be undesirable."
The group compares the register to historical instances when technology played a part in human rights abuses, such as IBM’s collaboration with the Nazis during World War II to digitize and streamline the Holocaust.
"We acknowledge that genocides are not merely a relic of the distant past—
It also advocates that its organizations destroy high-risk datasets and backups, make end-to-end encryption the default wherever possible, and demand appropriate legal process should the government request user data be handed over.
The proposed Muslim register will no doubt be one of the subjects discussed at today’s meeting. Attendees include Tim Cook, Sheryl Sandberg, Larry Page, Elon Musk, Satya Nadella, and possibly Jeff Bezos. One person who missed out on an invite is Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey; a bit surprising, considering how much Trump loves to tweet. Maybe it’s because the company recently said it wouldn’t hesitate in banning him if he breaks its rules.