Alphabet, the parent company of Google -- and by extension, YouTube -- maintained close ties to the last president: The company’s former CEO, Eric Schmidt, served on Barack Obama’s transition advisory board and several executives went on to roles in the Obama administration.
The election of President Donald Trump, who has few nice things to say about Silicon Valley, has left Alphabet and other tech companies scrambling to forge tighter relationships with Republicans.
COPYRIGHT The reform process now gathering steam under House Judiciary Chairman Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.) could affect the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, potentially giving YouTube more responsibility for content uploaded by users. But smaller changes to music licensing are more likely.
LICENSING Will the Department of Justice continue to push its “100 percent licensing” policy under Trump? The practice, which a rate-court judge ruled against in September 2016, is thought to be bad for publishers and songwriters but good for Internet companies like Google.
NET NEUTRALITY In 2015, the Federal Communications Commission enacted net neutrality rules that would help tech companies and arguably hurt Internet service providers. Google supported net neutrality, then dropped the issue. Trump’s pick to lead the FCC, Ajit Pai, has implied that he will roll back that policy.
SURVEILLANCE Internet companies like Google have chafed against widespread surveillance of the Internet (consumers might be reluctant to use services the government can access). Trump, who criticized Apple for declining to let the government access data stored on iPhones, is likely to be less sensitive about this.
IMMIGRATION Many startups were founded by immigrants, and many companies rely on engineers who come to the United States on H1B visas. Trump’s immigration policies could cost Google talent.