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China blocks Various websites, Internet Accounts in its new Cleanup Campaign



China blocks Various websites, Internet Accounts in its new Cleanup Campaign

China has launched a campaign to clean up its net, state media said on Wednesday, amid a new wave of clear censorship by governments that has blocked more overseas media sites and closed down national accounts on social networking.

The “rectification” campaign was launched in May from the Senate government, the information technology ministry, the public security bureau and the economies regulator and will operate until the close of the calendar year, the official Xinhua news agency said.

The campaign will penalize and expose sites for”criminal and illegal activities”, failing to”fulfil their duty” to take security steps or the theft of private data, it included.

The effort follows a string of shutdowns and blockages of specific sites and societal networking accounts.

A number of foreign websites past Beijing’s control, like the Washington Post and The Guardian, haven’t been available online since past week, adding to a record of blocked websites which includes Reuters.

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Online Chinese financial information book said on Monday it required its own site and cellular program offline in the authorities’ request, but gave no specifics of the principles it might have broken.

Social networking accounts ranging from these publishing politically sensitive material to financial information also have been closed.

Authorities stated in November they closed 9,800 reports of information providers regarded as submitting dramatic, vulgar or politically damaging content.

The Chinese online operator’s Shanghai office said in an announcement on Wednesday that it and the markets operator’s Shanghai office summoned representatives from Baidu Inc and hailed the company for unethical advertisements using vulgar articles or too sensational titles.

The government arranged the search engine operator to categorize its advertising company to get rid of these practices, according to the announcement, which lent a Baidu agent as saying that the firm could make necessary alterations.

When asked for comment, a Baidu representative called the opinions in the announcement without commenting further.

In the last few decades, China has frequently campaigned to authorities its net, shutting down sites, social networking accounts and mobile programs.

“The cleaning drives are not purely political. Many, possibly even most, of those accounts were probably spam, porn or other types of content that the platforms have made clear are undesirable and unwelcome,” said Fergus Ryan, an analyst with the Australian Strategic Policy Institute.

“The dilemma is that in one of those valid removals are reports which are eliminated for political motives.”

Shimin Fanga popular science author who attracted public scrutiny at China for critical remarks about telecommunications giant Huawei Technologies Co, said that he discovered on Tuesday all his Chinese social networking reports were removed.

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Fang, who resides in the USA, said he didn’t understand what had occurred until some subscribers told they could no longer find his postings and the stage operators wouldn’t tell him why his accounts were closed down.

“My guess is that from now on any influential self-media accounts will not be allowed to exist, no matter (if) they are political or not,” Fang told Reuters in an email.

The expression”self-media” is largely used on interpersonal websites to characterize separate news reports which create original content but aren’t formally registered with the government.

“The internet winter is coming,” Fang said.



Ornikar grabs $40 million in Series B funding to expand its driving school marketplace




Ornikar grabs $40 million in Series B funding to expand its driving school marketplace

French startup Ornikar is grabbing a $40 million Series B round ($35 million) from Idinvest and Bpifrance. The business competes with conventional driving schools in Europe using an internet market of pupils and educators.

And Ornikar was a huge victory in France. In general, 35 percent of forcing college registrations in 2019 is managed by Ornikar.

There are lots of benefits in picking Ornikar. For motorist pupils, Ornikar is a great deal more elastic than a classic driving school. Driving schools in France are often pretty small with just a couple of workers. It is sometimes difficult to book classes, particularly in case you’ve got a fulltime job.

When you register to Ornikar, you are able to connect to an Ornikar account and reserve an hour or two out there. Ornikar works using a pool of 650 teachers so you get to examine at your own pace.

Ornikar is also less costly than a classic driving school. By automating the government work as far as you can, the startup states that it’s 35 percent more affordable than a classic driving school. It now costs $750 to get 20 hours of course.

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“We have been rewarding in 2018 and quite rewarding in 2019 for the French marketplace,” Ornikar co-founder and CEO Benjamin Gaignault told.

Below are a few numbers. Each month, 30,000 individuals sign around Ornikar in France. The startup oversees 70,000 hours, of course, each month on its own market.

Ornikar functions with qualified teachers who obtained a permit to operate at a driving school. They have paid $15 per hour, which can be more than at a standard driving school.

With the current capital round, the startup wishes to expand into more nations. Ornikar already resides in Germany and Spain, but the business would like to grow the item there. At some point, the business will also expand to Italy along with the U.K.

Besides new nations, Ornikar would like to market other car-related goods. The business is partnering with third-party companies for auto insurance products, and there’ll be many more goods in the future.

Ornikar had raised an $11.3 million Series A ($10 million) plus a $1.3 million seed round ($1 million). Existing investors include Brighteye, Partech, Elaia, Xavier Niel, Jacques-Antoine Granjon and Marc Simoncini.

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Barbershop management startup Squire grabs $8 million in Series A funding




Barbershop management startup Squire grabs $8 million in Series A funding

Squire, a Y Combinator-backed small business management platform for barbershops, only raised an $8 million Series A round led by Trinity Ventures. Since launch in 2016, Squire has grown to function in 28 cities around three nations using over $100 million in transactions processed thus far.

Round the 28 cities in which Squire functions, the company says it finds that the maximum grip in cities such as New York, San Francisco, Miami, Atlanta, Los Angeles, and Toronto.

“They’ve been very effective and efficient in acquiring these businesses,” Trinity Ventures  General Partner Schwark Satyavolu told. “They’ve been very cost effective and figured out a product model that is efficient.”

With the financing in tow, Squire intends to recruit extra engineers, build a sales group and begin spending money on advertising.

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Squire includes a tiered business model that ranges from $30 a month to $250 a month, based upon the size and demands of this barbershop. The most elementary plan includes features like booking reports and capabilities while the comprehensive plan features all that and a custom program, support for several places, loyalty benefits, and a waitlist.

Squire originally did not bill barbershops, but immediately realized shops were eager to cover exactly what it was offering.

“In talking to customers, we realized there was a lot of opportunity to build value in a backend management system,” Squire co-founder Songe LaRon told. “And when we started working on those features, they would often expect to pay something. When we said it was free, they were actually a bit skeptical.”

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Down the street, Squire sees a future in which it might expand its version into other verticals but says it is now concentrated on barbershops and the $20 billion market opportunity in men’s grooming.


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Nowports grabs $5.3 million in seed round to compete against America’s digital shipping firm Flexport




Nowports grabs 5.3 million in seed round to compete against Americas digital shipping firm Flexport

Nowports, a developer of services and software to monitor cargo shipments from ports to destinations across Latin America, has plans to become the regional response to Flexport‘s billion-dollar digital delivery enterprise.

Nearly 54 million containers have been imported and exported from Latin America annually, and almost half of them are either lost or postponed as a result of mismanagement.

Nowports is pitching shippers on its electronic management applications to keep an eye on every container, also has signed onto a range of top venture capital companies to satisfy its mission.

The Monterrey, Mexico-based firm grabbed $5.3 million into its seed round of funding. The round was led by Base10 and Monashees, with involvement from Y Combinator and other investors such as Broadhaven, Soma Capital, Partech, Tekton, and Paul Buchheit.

“In Nowports we saw a very strong combination: well prepared and ambitious team using technology to help thousands of customers to improve their importing and exporting processes. By adding efficiency, reliability, and transparency to change a multi-billion dollar industry, Nowports has been able to attract many clients that saw significant improvements in their daily routines by using the solution” stated Caio Bolognesi, general partner from Monashees, in a declaration.

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The business said it would use the money to expand to new markets, expand its group and incorporate with more businesses involved with the (very fragmented) Latin American advertising business. It is a market which wants a variety of better logistics technology.

“Even though over 90% of the world’s trade is carried by sea, the most cost-effective way to move goods en masse, there has yet to be a solution that’s able to connect suppliers, customs brokers, carriers and transportation companies to provide an efficient and reliable service,” explained Maximiliano Casal, founder and chief executive of Nowports, in a declaration.“This is why we launched Nowports, combining our 10 years of industry expertise to fill this void and are currently working with over 40 customers in the region and growing.”

The business currently has offices in both Chile and Uruguay, also is likely to expand Brazil, Colombia and Peru.

“With platforms, algorithms with AI and integrations, our platform allows companies to take control of their shipments and plan and predict the best timing to move the freight based on the needs of their own company,” said Alfonso De Los Rios, founder, and CTO of Nowports.

Since the company looks to expand, it’s a strategic road map it could follow in the increase of Flexport, that the Silicon Valley startup which has come to be a billion-dollar business by employing technology into the obsolete delivery market.

The 2 co-founders of Nowports fulfilled at a schedule at Stanford University, with De Los Rios hailing from a family with deep ties into the transport sector. He and Casal tied up and both started plotting a way to produce the profoundly inefficient business more contemporary and transparent. To familiarize himself with all the marketplace for which he would be creating a tech, Casal functioned at a freight forwarder at Kansas City that was working for at least 30 decades ago.

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In all, cargo suppliers are getting paid almost $40 billion annually to transfer cargo into Latin America.

“Alfonso and Max are the ideal founders we look to invest in as they are industry experts and passionate about evolving the industry using technology and automation,” said Adeyemi Ajao, general partner from Base10.“We are proud to be investors in Nowports alongside our friends at Monashees and look forward to watching the company’s continued growth.”


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