WeChat, Weibo and Baidu under investigation

WeChat, Weibo and Baidu under investigation

China’s largest social media platforms – Weibo, WeChat and Baidu Tieba – are under investigation for alleged violations of cyber security laws. The Office for Cyberspace Administration said the three platforms had failed to police content on their sites. It said people had been using the platforms to spread terrorism-related material, rumours and obscenities. The breaches “jeopardised national security,” the administration said. Analysis: China continues to tightens online rules John Sudworth, BBC News, Beijing Weibo,…

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FaceApp launches 'blackface' feature, then deletes it after social backlash

FaceApp has removed a feature which changed people’s ethnicity in selfies less than 24 hours after updating it. The app, which launched in early 2017, changes photos with filters to make users look older, younger or swap gender. But its latest feature was criticised for being racist within minutes of going live. It allowed people to change their faces to look more black, Asian, Indian or Caucasian in photos. FaceApp was criticised in April for…

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Facebook introduces new video service

Facebook introduces new video service

Social media giant Facebook has made a move into dedicated video, pitting it against YouTube and TV networks. Users will soon see a new Watch tab that will offer a range of shows, some of which have been funded by the social network Watch will be personalised so that users can discover new shows, based on what their friends are watching. Viewers will also be able to see comments and connect with friends and dedicated…

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Customers 'furious' with TNT after cyber-attack meltdown

Customers 'furious' with TNT after cyber-attack meltdown

When Leah Charpentier ordered a vintage coffee table, on 8 June – a birthday present for her brother – she didn’t think it would take more than six weeks to be delivered. She also didn’t expect for the furniture to arrive with one of its casters broken off. This particular coffee table was just one of hundreds of thousands of items caught up in an extraordinary meltdown at courier TNT, which was badly affected by…

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'Hate speech' tweets painted at Twitter HQ in protest

'Hate speech' tweets painted at Twitter HQ in protest

A German satirist who claims Twitter is failing to delete hate speech has captured the firm’s attention offline – by stencilling the offending messages outside its Hamburg office. Shahak Shapira, who is Jewish, said he had reported 300 incidents of hate speech in six months, but Twitter had responded to just nine. A YouTube video has emerged showing Mr Shapira stencilling 30 tweets. “Germany needs a final solution to Islam,” reads one. “Let’s gas the…

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US military to shoot down consumer drones

US military to shoot down consumer drones

The Pentagon has given US military bases permission to shoot down or otherwise destroy consumer drones flying overhead and nearby. A spokesman revealed that guidance was issued on 4 August. He said the exact terms of the policy were classified. The move comes days after the US Army ordered its own troops to stop using drones made by Chinese manufacturer DJI because of alleged “cyber-vulnerabilities”. Privacy worries It became illegal to fly personal drones within…

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Emojis help software spot emotion and sarcasm

Emojis help software spot emotion and sarcasm

Emoji icons have helped scientists train computers to understand sarcasm. Researchers used 1.2 billion tweets containing at least one of the most popular 64 emojis to develop DeepMoji. The algorithm learned first to predict which emoji was likely to be used and then to recognise sarcasm, allowing it to spot hate speech faster than humans. It could also be used to assess how people really feel about different brands or to improve human interaction with…

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Bitcoin soars to record high value

Bitcoin soars to record high value

Bitcoin’s value has jumped to a record high, following a month of turmoil. The virtual currency reached $ 3,451.86 (£2,651) per coin in Monday trade, according to the Coindesk Bitcoin Price Index. It had never crossed the $ 3,000 mark until the weekend. The market value of all bitcoins in existence has now surpassed $ 56bn (£43bn). The surge followed the creation of a spin-off crypto-currency, Bitcoin Cash, last week. The new asset is trading…

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