2016 in Startup and Tech Policy

In 2016, Engine celebrated several political victories for the tech community, traveled across the country to emerging startup ecosystems, and participated on behalf of the startup community in a number of critical policy discussions.

We’re especially grateful for all of YOUR support. Many of you signed our letters to Congress, joined us at events around the country, and shared your stories to demonstrate why entrepreneurs and the startups they build are such a valuable part of our economy and our nation.

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Watch this space to read about all the issues we tackled this year.


Engine Highlights in 2016: Major Wins and Moments for Technology Startups and Entrepreneurs

Net Neutrality: Startups scored another win on net neutrality when the U.S. Court of Appeals voted 2-1 in June to uphold the FCC's 2015 Open Internet Order.

Capital Access: Investment crowdfunding went live. Policymakers explored modifications and improvements that could make the JOBS Act’s provisions work better for emerging companies.

Encryption: Over 40 startups pushed back against harmful encryption legislation, signing a letter explaining why encryption is essential to their business operations and their users’ digital security and trust.

Immigration: We supported a White House proposal that would create a new path for immigrant entrepreneurs to live in the U.S. to build their startup.

Stock Options: Nearly 100 startups signed letters urging Congress to pass the Empowering Employees through Stock Ownership Act, which will make it easier for startup employees to exercise their options. Our efforts helped push the House to pass the bill and the Senate Finance Committee to approve it. We celebrated its passage of the House in The Hill.

Emerging Technologies: We examined some of the policy issues surrounding innovative technologies like drones and artificial intelligence.

Diversity in Tech: We continued our work with the Congressional Diversifying Tech Caucus, hosting briefings on African Americans and veterans working in technology. We also led almost 40 veterans and veteran support organizations in sending a letter of support for the VET Act.  

Copyright: We weighed in on a number of copyright issues, including the Copyright Office’s 512 study and embedded software inquiry, as well as the European Commission’s copyright reform proposal.

Startup Cities: We visited emerging startup ecosystems around the country, stopping with the #RiseofRest tour in Omaha, Lincoln, Denver, Salt Lake City, Albuquerque, and Phoenix. We also published a report on Miami’s startup ecosystem.

2016 Race: We published report cards for the the 2016 Presidential and Senatorial races.


We hope you’ll join us in 2017 as we continue to fight to improve capital access, enhance educational opportunities for tech workers and aspiring entrepreneurs, defend strong encryption, protect net neutrality, and more.

Catch you next year!