Apple, Facebook, Google salute marriage equality

After the Supreme Court’s rulings Wednesday in favor of marriage equality, many Silicon Valley tech giants joined in the celebrations.

Apple, which in 2008 donated $100,000 to fight California’s same-sex marriage ban, told AllThingsD that it strongly supports marriage equality.

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“We consider it a civil rights issue. We applaud the Supreme Court for its decisions today,” the company said.

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg took to his timeline to share with followers that he felt proud of his country for the day’s decisions.

“I’m proud that our country is moving in the right direction, and I’m happy for so many of my friends and their families. #PrideConnectsUs,” Zuckerberg said.

Zuckerberg’s statement wasn’t too surprising considering Chris Hughes, one of Facebook’s co-founders, is gay and had his wedding in New York about a year ago.

The social network company itself also took the time to put out information about marriage equality, including the fact that about 70% of U.S. Facebook users have at least one friend who identifies as gay, lesbian or bisexual.

Google, meanwhile, brought a little color to users’ lives when they searched for words related to marriage equality. When users looked up the words “gay,” “lesbian,” “homosexuality,” “LGBT,” “marriage equality,” “bisexual” or “transgender,” the Google search bar became surrounded by rainbow colors, which, of course, are a symbol of gay pride.

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The search company also said it has a number of initiatives around marriage equality and gay pride this year. One of them included teaming up with Marc Jacobs Intl to create a Gif for marriage equality that can be seen on Google+, where users have been encouraged to share their stories of love under the hashtag #ProudToLove.

On YouTube, Google also kicked off its Pride campaign Thursday. The company created a video celebrating LGBT diversity and on its Spotlight Page, the company plans to feature LGBT programming Thursday and Friday.

Also in support was Hewlett-Packard, which told AllThingsD that it has a long history of supporting the LGBT community.

“HP has more than 30 years of partnership with and participation in pride events, and works throughout the year to build and strengthen HP as an organization that values all employees, customers and communities,” said Michael Thacker, global communications chair for the HP Pride Employee Resource Group.

But the support wasn’t limited to just those in California. Microsoft, based in Redmond, Wash., also showed its support for the Supreme Court’s decisions.

Wednesday’s “decision turns the page on a law that made it more difficult for us to treat all of our employees, regardless of sexual orientation, equally,” said Microsoft’s Brad Smith, general counsel and executive vice president of legal and corporate affairs.

“Microsoft joined dozens of corporations, organizations and governments in support of the challenge to DOMA because of the significant costs and administrative burdens it imposed on employers and because it interfered with our efforts to promote diversity and equal opportunity in the workplace.”


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