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DeSantis signs bill banning trans girls from women's sports on first day of Pride Month

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) on Tuesday signed a bill into law that would bar female transgender students from women's sports.

Why it matters: Florida is the eighth state so far this year to block trans student athletes from playing on sports teams that match their gender identity, per ACLU data. A record number of bills targeting trans youth have been introduced by Republican lawmakers.

Between the lines: "Supporters of the effort to restrict transgender athlete participation have cited no examples of competitive issues in Florida," the Miami Herald reports.

  • Several states, including Arkansas and West Virginia, have failed to find evidence of trans athletes posing an issue in competitions, but have still passed laws barring their participation.

The big picture: The Florida law identifies transgender girls as boys, which LGBTQ advocates have said effectively uses legislation to deny the existence of transgender youth — and trans people in general.

  • “In Florida, girls are going to play girls’ sports, and boys are going to play boys’ sports,” DeSantis said at Tuesday's signing event at the Trinity Christian Academy in Jacksonville, which took place on the first day of Pride Month.
  • "This will help ensure that opportunities for things like college scholarships will be protected for female athletes for years to come," he wrote on Twitter.

What to watch: The legislation goes into effect July 1, although advocacy groups including the Human Rights Campaign are expected to sue.

Why the startup world needs to ditch "unicorns" for "dragons"

When Aileen Lee originally coined the term "unicorn" in late 2013, she was describing the 39 "U.S.-based software companies started since 2003 and valued at over $1 billion by public or private market investors."

Flashback: It got redefined in early 2015 by yours truly and Erin Griffith, in a cover story for Fortune, as any privately-held startup valued at $1 billion or more. At the time, we counted 80 of them.

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Scoop: Facebook's new moves to lower News Feed's political volume

Facebook plans to announce that it will de-emphasize political posts and current events content in the News Feed based on negative user feedback, Axios has learned. It also plans to expand tests to limit the amount of political content that people see in their News Feeds to more countries outside of the U.S.

Why it matters: The changes could reduce traffic to some news publishers, particularly companies that post a lot of political content.

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Scoop: Amazon quietly getting into live audio business

Amazon is investing heavily in a new live audio feature that's similar to other live audio offerings like Clubhouse, Twitter Spaces and Spotify's new live audio platform, sources tell Axios.

Why it matters: As with Amazon's efforts in podcasting and music subscriptions, the company sees live audio as a way to bolster the types of content it can offer through its voice assistant, Alexa, and its smart speaker products.

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Hurricane Ida exposes America's precarious energy infrastructure

The powerful hurricane that plunged New Orleans into darkness for what could be weeks is the latest sign that U.S. power systems are not ready for a warmer, more volatile world.

The big picture: “Our current infrastructure is not adequate when it comes to these kinds of weather extremes,” Joshua Rhodes, a University of Texas energy expert, tells Axios.

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"We must go further": 70% of adults in European Union are fully vaccinated

About 70% of adults in the European Union are fully vaccinated against COVID-19, Ursula von der Leyen, the president of the European Commission, said Tuesday.

Why it matters: The milestone makes the E.U. one of the world's leaders in inoculations, after an initially lagging vaccine campaign, the New York Times notes.

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What Elizabeth Holmes jurors will be asked ahead of fraud trial

Jury selection begins today in USA v. Elizabeth Holmes, with the actual jury trial to get underway on Sept. 8.

Why it matters: Theranos was the biggest fraud in Silicon Valley history, putting both hundreds of millions of dollars and thousands of patients' health at risk.

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