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Tech

Snapchat announces new climate plan

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Snapchat announces new climate plan

Snapchat has announced a climate strategy to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions.

The social platform also plans to purchase 100% renewable energy with an ultimate goal to become carbon neutral.

They plan to offset emissions dating back to the company’s launch.

This comes amid discussions about the energy consumed by tech companies.

By focusing on becoming more energy-efficient, Snapchat will not only cut costs in the long run but also appeal to young users.

Young people tend to be passionate about climate change, so this will be a welcomed development.

Anthony Lucas is reporter, presenter and social media producer with ticker News. Anthony holds a Bachelor of Professional Communication, with a major in Journalism from RMIT University as well as a Diploma of Arts and Entertainment journalism from Collarts. He’s previously worked for 9 News, ONE FM Radio and Southern Cross Austerio’s Hit Radio Network. 

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Tech

Lawyers seeking $6 billion fee from Elon Musk

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The legal team responsible for voiding Elon Musk’s mammoth $56 billion compensation package is now seeking an unprecedented $6 billion in legal fees.

The three law firms involved justified their request in a filing with the Court of Chancery in Delaware, citing the monumental effort and risk involved in challenging Musk’s compensation package, which was deemed excessive by a Delaware judge in January.

“We recognise that the requested fee is unprecedented in terms of absolute size,” the firms stated, adding that the fee equates to an astronomical hourly rate of $288,888.

Musk swiftly condemned the request as “criminal,” taking to his platform X, formerly known as Twitter, to express outrage: “The lawyers who did nothing but damage Tesla want $6 billion.”

Neither Tesla nor Musk’s attorney have responded to requests for comment.

Pay packet

The legal battle stems from a lawsuit filed by shareholder Richard Tornetta in 2018, which led to the nullification of Musk’s lucrative pay package.

The electric vehicle manufacturer could be on the hook for the hefty fee as it stands to benefit from the return of Musk’s compensation, which includes a staggering 266 million shares.

“This structure has the benefit of linking the award directly to the benefit created and avoids taking even one cent from the Tesla balance sheet to pay fees,” the lawyers argued, emphasising that the fee would be tax-deductible to Tesla.

Judge Kathaleen McCormick, overseeing the case, had previously described Musk’s pay as “unfathomable” in her ruling.

However, Tesla may contest the fee, given a similar fee request in a separate case concerning pay for its directors.

Legal compensation

The proposed fee, if granted, would set a new record in legal compensation, surpassing even the $688 million awarded to attorneys in a 2008 securities fraud case involving Enron Corp.

As the Delaware Supreme Court weighs an appeal regarding a $267 million fee in a case involving Dell Technologies, the issue of attorney compensation in high-stakes litigation continues to be a subject of debate.

Critics argue that as settlements and judgments increase in size, attorneys should receive a declining percentage to prevent overcompensation.

The legal team behind the Musk case contends that their requested fee represents around 11% of the judgment.

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Google CEO condemns AI blunders in staff memo

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In response to recent controversies surrounding Google’s artificial intelligence blunders, CEO Sundar Pichai issued a memo to employees, addressing the company’s missteps and outlining plans for improvement.

The memo comes after Google faced criticism for flaws in its Gemini image-generation feature, leading to the tool being taken offline for further testing. Pichai described the issues as “problematic” and acknowledged that they “have offended our users and shown bias,” according to reports first surfaced by Semafor.

The Gemini image generator, introduced earlier this month as part of Google’s main group of AI models, allows users to input prompts to create images.

However, users discovered historical inaccuracies in the generated images, prompting widespread backlash online.

Consequently, Google removed the feature last week, stating its intention to relaunch it after addressing the issues.

Google Gemini

Pichai expressed regret over the offensive responses produced by the AI system, emphasising that such behavior is “completely unacceptable.”

He emphasised the challenges of developing AI technology, acknowledging that perfection is elusive, particularly in the nascent stages of the industry’s evolution.

Nevertheless, Pichai stressed that Google recognizes the high standards expected of them.

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Slack CEO has advice for turning off work notifications

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In an era dominated by constant connectivity, Slack CEO Denise Dresser emphasises the importance of setting boundaries to maintain a healthy work-life balance.

As leaders grapple with the challenges of an always-on culture, Dresser suggests that modeling certain behaviors can help alleviate the pressures faced by employees in today’s hyper-connected workplace.

Dresser, who assumed the CEO role last November, advocates for leaders to establish clear boundaries to prevent employees from feeling overwhelmed by the demands of modern work.

Rather than implementing new company policies, she believes that leaders can effectively shape the organisational culture by exemplifying healthy work practices.

Proactive measures

Victoria Mills, CEO of Hello Coach, echoes Dresser’s sentiments, emphasising the need for proactive measures to foster work-life balance.

Mills encourages her staff to disconnect by turning off notifications after 5pm and questions the necessity of installing work apps on personal devices.

Recognising the pervasive nature of technology, Mills underscores the importance of individuals taking control of their digital interactions. She advises employees to manage notifications and settings to prevent technology from dictating their lives.

In addition to individual efforts, Hello Coach implements company-wide initiatives to promote well-being, such as mandatory lunch breaks devoid of meetings or messages.

Mills believes that frequent breaks are essential for maintaining energy levels and productivity, particularly for employees spending prolonged hours in front of screens.

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