SAN FRANCISCO - Thousands of Dreamforce attendees packed Chase Center Wednesday for the Dreamfest benefit concert featuring the Foo Fighters. The event raised an estimated $6.5 million for the UCSF Benioff Children's Hospital.
The night capped what many attendees said was an exciting second day of the Dreamforce convention, held by San Francisco-based Salesforce. The annual tech convention brought many celebrities and politicians to the stage.
California Gov. Gavin Newsom sat down for a keynote talk Wednesday with Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff.
"Welcome everyone, thank you for applauding for San Francisco. We've been in a doom loop for too long, so I appreciate a little positivity," said Newsom.
The governor's comments acknowledged a statement Benioff made last month, that he might pull Dreamforce, the city's largest convention, out of San Francisco if problems with homelessness and open drug dealing impacted the event.
"This is probably the cleanest I've ever seen San Francisco. It's amazing how clean the streets are," said Benioff.
Newsom replied in a half-joking manner that he and the city were trying to "suck up" to Benioff because "we want you to stay."
Some 40,000 attendees are in town for Dreamforce. Some attendees say they've noticed Salesforce guides on the streets along with police.
"They have a route between my hotel and here where they have lots of Salesforce people to tell you where to turn," said Courtney Hill, analytical solutions manager at University of North Carolina Health, who said even when she walked down streets past some homeless encampments, she hadn't had any problems, "No one hassled me. I feel comfortable."
"I used to work here 10 years ago. I do think the homelessness...has gotten a little worse, but I still love the vibe of San Francisco, It's a one-of-a-kind place," said Sam Fonoimoana, CEO of Datajoin.
"I walked this morning from where I was staying to the Salesforce area. Maybe I wouldn't do that at one or two in the morning, but I think it's important to highlight the issue," said Gabi Steele, CEO and co-founder of Preql, based in New York City.
Some San Franciscans say they hope the city listens more to the feelings of residents year-round.
"I do hope the city does more to make residents and visitors feel safe," said Derek Steer, Founder of Superframe and a San Francisco resident.
"I think that he really just wanted to make sure that we are doing what we needed to do to ensure the streets were safe and clean and so far it looks like we are living up to that," said San Francisco Mayor London Breed.
Along with politicians at the convention Wednesday, celebrities shared their thoughts on AI in entertainment, from musician will.i.am to actor Matthew McConaughey.
"If AI is the new frontier, in this data revolution, the new innovation, for it to be sustainable, it's going to need some regulations, it's going to need some values," said McConaughey.
Others who are scheduled to appear at Dreamforce Thursday include actors Kristen Bell and Viola Davis, and filmmaker Spike Lee.
Editor's note: An earlier version of this article overstated how much money had been raised for UCSF Benioff Children's Hospital.