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‘Digital Gangsters’: UK Wants Tougher Rules for Facebook

British lawmakers issued a scathing report Monday that calls for tougher rules on Facebook to keep it from acting like “digital gangsters” and intentionally violating data privacy and competition laws. The report on fake news and disinformation on social media sites followed an 18-month investigation by Parliament’s influential media committee. The committee recommended that social media sites should have to follow a mandatory code of ethics overseen by an independent regulator to better control harmful or illegal content.   The report called out Facebook in particular, saying that the site’s …


China Seizes $1.5 Billion in Online Lending Crackdown

Chinese police have investigated 380 online lenders and frozen $1.5 billion in assets following an avalanche of scandals in the huge but lightly regulated industry, the government announced Monday. Beijing allowed a private finance industry to flourish in order to supply credit to entrepreneurs and households that aren’t served by the state-run banking system. But that threatens to become a liability for the ruling Communist Party after bankruptcies and fraud cases prompted protests and complaints of official indifference to small investors.   The police ministry said it launched the investigation …


NYC’s Chinatown Welcomes Year of the Pig With Vvibrant Parade

Drums, dragons and dancers paraded through New York’s Chinatown on Sunday to usher in the Year of the Pig in the metropolis with the biggest population of Chinese descent of any city outside Asia. Confetti and spectators a half-dozen or more deep at points lined the route of the Lunar New Year Parade in lower Manhattan. “The pig year is one of my favorite years, because it means lucky — everybody likes lucky — and, for me, a relationship or family” and a better life, Eva Zou said as she …


Trump: US Trade Talks with China Making ‘Big Progress’

President Donald Trump said Sunday “big progress” is being made in U.S. trade talks with China on what he calls “so many different fronts.” “Our country has such fantastic potential for future growth and greatness on an even higher level,” the president tweeted. Trump said last week he might put off the March 1 deadline to increase tariffs on China if a trade deal is close. But a China trade expert who served in the Obama administration says he has only seen “incremental progress” toward a trade deal with China. …


Fiascos and Fumbles: Oscar Organizers Stumble to Restore Glory

First it was the furor over a proposed new “popular” film category, then it was the fiasco over planned host Kevin Hart, and last month the organizers of the Oscars were accused of intimidating celebrities not to present at rival award shows. Last week, another storm erupted when, as part of a pledge to shorten next Sunday’s Oscars ceremony, plans to present awards for cinematography, film editing, live-action shorts and makeup/hairstyling during commercial breaks were slammed as insulting by actors, directors and cinematographers. Five days later, the plan was scrapped. …