LEDE: President Obama will travel to South by Southwest (SXSW) on Friday to encourage tech leaders to help solve problems that don't require legislative action.
Obama will also urge tech talent to join the government for a small stint with the U.S. Digital Service.
"We expect the president to talk about some of the big challenges that he sees out there that he believes the tech industry could help tackle in partnership with the government," said Jason Goldman, the White House chief digital officer.
OTHER LAWMAKERS FLOCK TO SXSW: South by Southwest is a popular place for tech-minded lawmakers. Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.), and Sens. Mark WarnerMark WarnerOvernight Cybersecurity: Calls grow for encryption panel Homeland Security Committee pushes encryption commission in new report The Hill's 12:30 Report MORE (D-Va.), and John CornynJohn CornynOvernight Tech: Obama signs FOIA reform bill | Musicians take YouTube fight to Europe | Feds probe first driverless car death Obama signs bill to expand access to federal records Lynch meeting with Bill Clinton creates firestorm for email case MORE (R-Texas) among others will be stopping by.
FOIA REFORM OPPOSITION LIFTING: The road appears to be clearing for a bill meant to strengthen the Freedom of Information Act. Sen. Jeff SessionsJeff SessionsGingrich, Christie top Trump’s VP list: report Trump hopes for boost from Brexit vote GOP senators: Brexit vote a wake-up call MORE (R-Ala.) signaled Thursday that he would be removing his year-long hold, while Sen. David VitterDavid VitterFed chairwoman blasts Trump on debt Senate campaign posts private conversation on Facebook Rand Paul endorses in La. Senate race MORE (R-La.) removed a separate hold a few days ago. Advocates are calling for a vote as "Sunshine week" approaches.
LADIES AND GENTLEMEN, YOUR FCC AGENDA: The two big-ticket items on the tentative agenda for the March open meeting at the FCC are proposed new privacy rules for Internet service providers announced Thursday, and the expansion of Lifeline subsidies to cover broadband service. But it will also include a notice of proposed rulemaking that requests comment on how to increase video described programming for blind and visually impaired people.
DID THE FACEBOOK GUN BAN WORK?: Forbes finds it's still pretty easy to buy a gun on Facebook, despite rules banning firearm sales on the platform. In one group, an administrator warned posters not to say they had an "item" for sale but simply to post a photo and "if someone happens to message you asking if you'd like to sell it well then good for you that's none of my business." A Facebook spokesperson said the company was always looking for ways to improve its implementation of the ban.
HOW MUCH WILL ROBOTS WORK IN THE FUTURE: Sixty-five percent of Americans think that within 50 years, robots or computers will probably or definitely be doing much of the work currently performed by humans, according to a new Pew report. But they generally think that their job will be safe from being transformed by automation.
STATE DINNER GUESTS: The New York Times reported that only about 12 percent of the president's usual hand-picked guests are from the technology, sports or health sector. Tonight, President Obama's state dinner will not include many high-tech luminaries, aside from the chief executive of Xerox, who is scheduled to attend.
IN CASE YOU MISSED IT:
Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.) signaled Thursday that he would remove his opposition to a bill to reform the government's open records laws after some of his changes were accepted.
The White House is touting a new initiative to provide baby diapers to low-income families as the kind of private-sector engagement he will call for during his appearance at South by Southwest (SXSW) on Friday.
The Federal Communications Commission on Thursday announced draft privacy rules that would govern how broadband Internet service providers can use and share customer data.
A major step was taken Thursday in the U.S. government's plan to hand off oversight of the Internet domain name system.
The Republican National Committee on Thursday rolled out a new line of attack against Hillary ClintonHillary Rodham ClintonTrump: 'I’m just flabbergasted’ by Clinton-Lynch meet AFL-CIO head: Trump’s ‘a fraud’ Sanders skirts Biden's claim that he'll endorse Clinton MORE's private email setup while secretary of State, one year after she first publicly addressed the contested issue.