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Javid blasts Johnson aide in post-resignation Commons statement - channel 4

Javid blasts Johnson aide in post-resignation Commons statement

Boris Johnson faced a stinging rebuke from his former Chancellor Sajid Javid.
channel 4 - 16 minutes ago
Ironbridge residents evacuated as flood defences breached - channel 4

Ironbridge residents evacuated as flood defences breached

Communities faced with flooding have been warned tonight that it could last for another 10 days.
channel 4 - 20 minutes ago
Trump accuses media of fuelling fears over coronavirus - channel 4

Trump accuses media of fuelling fears over coronavirus

President Trump has laid into the media - accusing them of fuelling fears about the coronavirus and insisting his administration was doing a "great job".
channel 4 - 21 minutes ago
Coronavirus spreading further amid pandemic fears - channel 4

Coronavirus spreading further amid pandemic fears

The coronavirus is spreading, with Pakistan being the latest to declare its first cases -  and so is fear of the unknown.
channel 4 - 25 minutes ago
Hancock says UK has ‘clear plan’ for coronavirus outbreak - channel 4

Hancock says UK has ‘clear plan’ for coronavirus outbreak

Health Secretary Matt Hancock told MPs a wider public information campaign will be rolled out - insisting the government had a "clear plan to contain, delay, research and mitigate" the coronavirus outbreak.
channel 4 - 26 minutes ago
Goldman Sachs led a $55 million funding round in South African fintech startup Jumo - quartz

Goldman Sachs led a $55 million funding round in South African fintech startup Jumo

The new funding round brings Jumo's total funding raised to nearly $150 million.
quartz - 35 minutes ago
Football abuse victim claims he was trafficked from Scotland to paedophile Barry Bennell - channel 4

Football abuse victim claims he was trafficked from Scotland to paedophile Barry Bennell

Exclusive: former youth footballer says he was trafficked as a child from Scottish to English football - where he was abused by paedophile Barry Bennell
channel 4 - 37 minutes ago
Under Bob Iger, Disney took over the world - quartz

Under Bob Iger, Disney took over the world

Depending on whom you ask, Iger either turned Disney into the best brand on Earth or a monstrosity that monopolized culture.
quartz - 49 minutes ago
The growing list of world events canceled due to coronavirus - quartz

The growing list of world events canceled due to coronavirus

Fear over the spread of the disease has already disrupted schools and cruise ships. Now, it's coming for your social and professional calendar, too.
quartz - 1 hour ago
Germany facing coronavirus ‘epidemic,’ govt can no longer track infection chains – health minister - rt

Germany facing coronavirus ‘epidemic,’ govt can no longer track infection chains – health minister

German Health Minister Jens Spahn has said that his country is facing a “coronavirus epidemic.” Since breaking out in northern Italy, the deadly COVID-19 virus has spread to more than a dozen European countries.
rt - 2 hours ago
Former Atomwaffen Leader Nicknamed ‘Rape’ Has Been Arrested​ - vice

Former Atomwaffen Leader Nicknamed ‘Rape’ Has Been Arrested​

He allegedly participated in a swatting campaign targeting politicians, a historically black church, and journalists.
vice - 2 hours ago
Woman who accused partner of domestic violence ‘filmed pooping on his belongings’ - metro

Woman who accused partner of domestic violence ‘filmed pooping on his belongings’

Prosecutors have filed to dismiss charges against Indiana official Michael Brown after being shown the disturbing clips
metro - 3 hours ago
Taking an Uber or Lyft Might Be Worse for the Environment Than Just Driving - vice

Taking an Uber or Lyft Might Be Worse for the Environment Than Just Driving

The reason: “deadheading,” the miles that ride-sharing drivers travel between trips with passengers.
vice - 3 hours ago
‘Violent criminal beheaded his grandmother and left her head in backyard’ - metro

‘Violent criminal beheaded his grandmother and left her head in backyard’

Kenny McBride, 45, is charged with felony open murder and mutilation of a dead body.
metro - 3 hours ago
Incest pervert, 42, says he only had sex with close teen relative to ‘fulfill her fantasy’ - metro

Incest pervert, 42, says he only had sex with close teen relative to ‘fulfill her fantasy’

Terry Powell faces three years behind bars for having sex with the 18 year-old girl
metro - 3 hours ago
Assange blasts court for preventing communication with lawyers, alleges legal team is being SPIED on - rt

Assange blasts court for preventing communication with lawyers, alleges legal team is being SPIED on

On the third day of his extradition hearing WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange has rebuked the court for preventing him from communicating with his legal team, saying his prosecutors have "100 times more contact hours each day.”
rt - 4 hours ago
These Botanists Are Searching for Endangered Plants With Drones — Then Scaling Cliffs to Save Them - vice

These Botanists Are Searching for Endangered Plants With Drones — Then Scaling Cliffs to Save Them

Meet Hawaii's Indiana Joneses of rare plant conservation.
vice - 4 hours ago
Researchers claim diabetes breakthrough after curing mice using stem cells - rt

Researchers claim diabetes breakthrough after curing mice using stem cells

A team of scientists at an American medical school have managed to cure diabetes in mice for up to nine months, after injecting the rodents with insulin-producing cells created from human stem cells.
rt - 6 hours ago
The Coronavirus Is Starting to Hit The U.S. Military - vice

The Coronavirus Is Starting to Hit The U.S. Military

A 23-year-old soldier and a military spouse, both in South Korea, are infected with Covid-19.
vice - 6 hours ago
Democrats Make One Last Big Pitch to Black Voters - vice

Democrats Make One Last Big Pitch to Black Voters

Or, at least, try to convince them not to vote for the other guys.
vice - 6 hours ago
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quartz
Doomsday app games about plague and disaster are going viral in China

Doomsday app games about plague and disaster are going viral in China

quartz - 1 month ago
A man wears a face mask as he walks past a display for the upcoming Lunar New Year, the Year of the Rat, in Beijing, Wednesday, Jan. 22, 2020.

Strategy games about epidemics and war are going viral in China, just as it’s facing a real-life challenge of grappling with a fast-spreading new virus that has led to hundreds of infections and nine deaths.

Plague Inc. and Rebel Inc., both developed by British game studio Ndemic Creations, have seen a surge in downloads since Monday (Jan. 20), the day China announced that a new pneumonia-like illness had spread to cities outside Wuhan, the Chinese city where the outbreak began.

Plague Inc, which lets players evolve a pathogen to wipe out humanity, jumped from the fifth spot on Monday to top the charts among paid games on China’s iOS store as of Wednesday (Jan. 22), according to data provider Sensor Tower. Meanwhile, Rebel Inc., which requires users to stabilize a war-torn country and “win the hearts and minds of the people” while also trying to prevent a deadly insurgency from taking power, jumped from the 27th spot on Monday to fifth on Wednesday.

The popularity of the doomsday simulation games comes as worries have increased about the new coronavirus, a type of virus that can cause colds but also more serious respiratory illnesses, as it spread to more cities in China and more countries this week. The country’s health commission said on Wednesday authorities have confirmed more than 440 infections and nine deaths, a sharp increase from around 300 cases and six deaths reported a day before. Outside mainland China, the US, Thailand, Taiwan, Macau, Japan and South Korea have reported confirmed cases of the illness, which can be transmitted human-to-human.

On China’s Twitter-like Weibo platform, many joked darkly about the similarities between the games and the real situation. “The best way to get rid of fear is to face the fear itself,” wrote 17173, a Chinese game news site, commenting on Plague Inc.’s sudden rise in popularity. Some users said that in order to have a more immersive experience, they chose China as the origin country that exports the virus to other regions in the game. Others felt especially connected to the fake news scenario in Plague that allows players to use modern technology and psychological tricks to spread misinformation about the virus.

“This scenario feels so real,” said a user. There has already been a strong online backlash against Chinese authorities over their handling of the disease, with some people complaining that information updates are not coming quickly enough, and others criticizing the Wuhan government for having a slow response initially.

The public distrust in authorities can be traced back to 2003, and the SARS epidemic, a deadly coronavirus that also originated China and killed close to 800 people in the region. Beijing was at the time accused of covering up information in the early stages and being slow to report cases to the World Health Organization. While China is now in the age of social media, which allow for online updates from municipalities and internet discussions of the virus, China’s strict online censorship regime (paywall) continues to fuel suspicion about the government.

A leading Chinese infectious diseases expert known for his role in combatting SARS, however, says China is being transparent, while a top Chinese political body has warned officials that if they dare to suppress information this time they would be “nailed on the pillar of shame for eternity.”

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