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2018-09-11 10:43:43

Chinese ride-hailing platform Didi Chuxing said it’s improving its emergency safety feature after a woman revealed flaws in the service, The Paper reported Tuesday.

The Guangzhou-based passenger, whose driver initially refused to let her out of the car after a dispute on Sept. 7, said the current feature allowing passengers to quickly call the police is not convenient. She added that users are then required to verbally provide details of their location and vehicle while in earshot of the driver. Didi introduced a range of safety measures after two passengers were allegedly murdered by their drivers in May and August.

On Monday, authorities in Guangzhou found that both the driver and the car involved in last week’s incident were not licensed to provide ride-hailing services. (Image: VCG)

5 hours

A Fujian official’s recent proposal to keep “children of fraudsters” out of public schools has sparked backlash online.

At a political event last week, Gao Xiangrong, the Party secretary of Anxi County, pledged that children whose parents were involved in phone scams would be barred from public schools, Jiemian reported Tuesday.

Though not yet policy, Gao’s pledge is being hotly debated online. Huang Xin, a law professor at East China Normal University, told Jiemian that such “collective punishment” violates China’s constitution and compulsory education law, which requires children to complete school through the ninth grade.

Notorious for telecom scams, Anxi has attempted to crack down on phone fraud since August 2016, when an 18-year-old had a fatal heart attack after being swindled out of 9,900 yuan ($1,450). (Image: VCG)

5 hours

An amusement park in eastern China’s Zhejiang province is investigating safety issues after images of a boy dangling from a Ferris wheel circulated online, local media reported Monday.

Video posted on social media shows a five-year-old boy hanging in the air from one of the carriages at the Yuhuan Amusement Park in Taizhou. The boy’s mother blamed the park employees for letting her son board the ride alone without her knowledge or consent.

Theme parks are popular attraction in China, but they have also been subject to scrutiny following some high-profile accidents. Last year, a teenager died after being thrown off a ride at a theme park near Chongqing. (Image: Weibo)

7 hours

Peppa Pig’s parent company Entertainment One claimed they’ve lost “tens of millions of dollars” due to trademark infringement in China, The Paper reported Tuesday.

Niall Trainor, director of the brand protection team at the company’s Family & Brands division, condemned local businesses cashing in on the immense popularity of the British cartoon character. He added that the number of Chinese manufacturers profiting from unlicensed products was “shocking.” In November, police confiscated 5 million yuan worth of counterfeit Peppa Pig merchandise from a manufacturer in Jiangsu province.

Peppa Pig has attracted millions of eyeballs since its Chinese debut in 2015 and is now a street couture icon. A Peppa Pig theme park is also expected to open next year as China celebrates the Year of the Pig. (Image: IC)

1 day

Scholars who’ve been awarded one of China’s highest tertiary-level honors can now have their title revoked if they’re found guilty of unethical academic practices.

The Ministry of Education said Friday that it will expel recipients of the prestigious Changjiang Scholars Program who have “violated teaching ethics,” without elaborating further. Previously, there were no punishments for awardees who had been found guilty of wrongdoing.

As the #MeToo movement gains momentum in Chinese universities, several academics have been accused of sexual misconduct. In July, Sun Yat-sen University suspended one of its professors — a Changjiang Scholar — who had been accused of sexual harassment, and asked the ministry to strip his title. (Image: VCG)

5 days

An American fast-food chain has partnered with a Chinese state broadcaster for its latest advertisement to mark the 40th anniversary of China’s economic reforms.

KFC released the ad Thursday featuring celebrities from two generations — actor Huang Bo and pop idol Lu Han — who time travel on a train, tracing China’s development since it opened to foreign investment in 1978. The two-minute video co-produced with China Central Television highlights the country’s infrastructure advancements, including high-speed railways and the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macau Bridge, as well as the technological progress achieved in the last four decades.

KFC was the first fast-food chain to open in China in 1987 and has now over 5,000 restaurants in 1,100 cities. (Image: KFC's official Weibo account)

5 days

China’s top health watchdogs launched a campaign Wednesday to crack down on illegal prenatal sex-determination through “fetus photography.”

The National Health Commission, along with four other government departments, ordered local health authorities to ensure better ultrasound procedures and monitor unlicensed medical activities. The move follows media reports that private businesses were offering to determine the baby’s gender through high-tech ultrasound technology.

Sex-determination during pregnancy and sex-selective abortion — except for those with legitimate medical conditions — is illegal in China. (Image: VCG)

6 days

China’s education ministry has ordered a nationwide inspection to catch schools using textbooks not prescribed in the national curriculum, China News Service reported Wednesday.

The ministry began its inspection on Friday, and said it had already found several primary and middle schools which had substituted government-mandated textbooks with either foreign or tailor-made course materials.

Under China’s 2001 curriculum reform, primary and middle schools are required to use textbooks authorized by the Ministry of Education for subjects taught under the national syllabus and are only encouraged to develop their own study materials for extracurricular purposes. (Image: VCG)

2018-09-19 09:27:46

Police in Zhejiang province have arrested more than 200 people in what they believe to be the largest ever crackdown in China’s war against pornography, The Paper reported Wednesday.

The suspects were involved in a cross-border gang and offered over 100 online erotic livestreaming channels to more than 3.5 million paid subscribers. Police said the group operated through overseas servers and generated 250 million yuan ($36 million) in revenues since it began streaming in August 2017.

Chinese authorities have been on a mission to “clean the web,” eradicating any content deemed offensive. Last year, the anti-pornography office shut over 6,000 websites and WeChat accounts hosting pornographic content and deleted 4.5 million erotic posts online, according to Xinhua. (Image: VCG)

2018-09-19 09:24:26

A passenger getting sick after eating a moldy meal has prompted the Chinese government to re-evaluate train food safety.

The passenger purchased the 40-yuan ($6) lunchbox while traveling from Beijing to Wuhan earlier this month and experienced vomiting and diarrhea after eating it. Amid the ensuing public outcry, the State Council dispatched inspectors, and China Railway — a state-owned enterprise — said it will stop providing meals that have been stored or transported at room temperature by Sept. 29.

China’s rail network is extensive, but passengers still complain about the high price and poor quality of onboard meals. In July 2017, China Railway implemented a system under which passengers could order takeout from restaurants like KFC delivered to their seats at select stations. (Image: @新华网 on Weibo)

2018-09-18 08:53:41

Netizens can now watch Discovery Channel shows on Bilibili, one of the most popular video-streaming platforms among Chinese millennials.

On Monday, Bilibili reached an agreement with the U.S. network to both introduce existing content and co-produce new content, according to Qdaily. Previously, Bilibili users could find Discovery shows on the platform, but these were typically uploaded by individual users in violation of copyright. On Discovery’s Bilibili channel, Chinese netizens can now binge shows like “Man Vs. Wild” and “Pit Bulls & Parolees.”

This is not the first time Discovery has partnered with a Chinese streaming service. In August, the network authorized iQiyi to broadcast programming from “Shark Week” — a cult phenomenon in North America. (Image: VCG)

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