“Consumer tech is bracing for its first contraction in more than a decade” – Protocol – July 20, 2020 / 2020 tech industry revenue forecast / Chart: Protocol / Source: Consumer Technology Association


U.S. and European stocks continued to fluctuate on Monday morning as both regions wait on potential stimulus packages from the United States and the European Union. U.S. lawmakers are stepping into a critical three weeks before they recess amid immense pressure to extend jobless benefits and eviction moratoriums, amounting to another trillion dollar-plus relief package. Millions of people face the possibility of losing federal eviction protections by the end of the month, a housing crisis that some economists say will worsen due to the lack of the government’s ability to efficiently track and assist people who have been evicted. Meanwhile, the E.U. is inching closer to another massive relief package following disagreements over the size of the fund and limits on its use. As talks resume, concern for the United States’ troubled coronavirus response shines a spotlight on the intrinsic ties between economic recovery in the U.S. and a sustained recovery across the globe.

Florida has developed into a new virus hotspot following tens of thousands more COVID-19 cases reported there throughout the week. Politicians in Florida and the mayors of hard-hit cities such as Los Angeles, Houston and Atlanta are warning of the potential for renewed stay-at-home orders to quell the crisis, although their respective state governors remain opposed. 

A new analysis of testing data shows that an increase in testing did not inflate case numbers in 26 out of the 33 states that experienced more COVID-19 cases in June and July, disproving White House claims that the rise in numbers is due solely to more widespread testing. The Trump administration over the weekend pushed back against Republican senators’ requests for more funds for testing and tracing to be included in the next relief bill. 

Parents and their employers face a growing child care dilemma as schools consider extending online learning into the fall. A report by Northeastern University shows that 13% of parents have lost jobs or reduced work hours because of a lack of child care during the pandemic. Parents of homebound children since March have taken advantage of legislation that provided them up to 12 weeks of paid leave, but many companies are exempt, while others have already reached the 12-week mark. As the pandemic wears on, some parents say they are forced to choose between keeping their kids at home or offering them more experiences to socialize and separate from technology.

Student-athletes face tough decisions this fall as their colleges and universities ask them to continue playing during the pandemic. Students willing to accept the risk are asked to sign a waiver exempting those schools from liability, but those who do not accept risk losing their place on the team or their scholarships.

Museums and libraries in Washington state are asking for contributions from the public to chronicle life during the COVID-19 pandemic. These institutions hope to tell the story for future generations through archives that portray ordinary life, from photos of the backyard to doing dishes and chores.

6 burning questions for Covid-19 vaccine developers headed to the House – STAT – 7/20/2020
But right behind that is just how much it’ll cost. And the industry could answer now by committing to a price before a vaccine is approved. The U.S. government has some leverage for such a demand. With the exception of Pfizer, each of the companies at the table has received substantial federal funding to support its vaccine development.

U.S. Airlines Face the End of Business Travel as They Knew It – Bloomberg – 7/20/2020
Even after 18 to 24 months, business travel will remain at least 25% below pre-pandemic levels and may stay down by as much as half, said Bruno Despujol, a partner at consultant Oliver Wyman. Trips for internal purposes, which account for as much as 40% of business demand, is most likely to decline.

The people with hidden protection from Covid-19 – BBC – 7/19/2020
Most bizarrely of all, when researchers tested blood samples taken years before the pandemic started, they found T cells which were specifically tailored to detect proteins on the surface of Covid-19. This suggests that some people already had a pre-existing degree of resistance against the virus before it ever infected a human.

My first post-lockdown haircut was emotional, exciting, and strangely normal – Business Insider – 7/20/2020
The rest of my cut was surprisingly close to normal. Sol’s visor didn’t stop the flow of chatter, or sense of pampering. We talked about vacations, football, and dating in the age of coronavirus. In the only awkward moment, I asked for a beard trim.

What Does It Mean to Say a New Drug ‘Works’? – Wired – 7/20/2020
Facing a new disease, researchers have to rethink what success even means. Is it lower mortality? Less disability upon recovery? Faster recovery? The answers are cryptic because the questions are just educated guesses.


Derrick Johnson @DerrickNAACP 19 Jul When Congress returns this week, fixing the housing crisis must be at the top of the agenda. There is no excuse whatsoever not to provide the relief people so desperately need.

Anthony DeRosa  @Anthony 19 Jul 2020 has been rough on America’s cities. But researchers say don’t count them out. “The dystopian take is just wrong.”

Margot Roosevelt @margotroosevelt 19 Jul Even $100 million LA plans to spend on low-income tenants won’t stop wave of COVID-19 driven evictions if GOP in Congress blocks extending federal unemployment benefits By ⁦@dillonliam⁩

Chris @chrstphr_woody 19 Jul “They know that people have lost jobs and will not be able to find new ones and will not be able to pay their rent. But the people occupying positions of power in the federal government do not care enough to take the steps to save those citizens”

City Limits @CityLimitsNews 19 Jul The Bronx is leading the boroughs in Coronavirus deaths. It also faces the most housing code violations and evictions and hosts a growing number of rent-burdened tenants, according to an index of housing vulnerability around the city.


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