❗🚨 Alert spooks more than the message in it
Social media posts actually have consequences.
Editor’s note: A technical error this morning had this only sent out to paid subscribers - this post is identical to the one you would’ve gotten this morning.
I’ve been invited to speak today at a McGill University-affiliated event on my experiences as a journalist who works under certain (👀) contexts. It’s an honour to have been invited at all, no less by our former intern Kyna Lee! It sounds like she’s doing great things at McGill and I’m proud to have had her last summer on the Harbour Times team.
Look, I will shill HT to receive as much support as possible, so I will give anyone who attends (let me know if you do) two free months of High Tide Premium.
P.S. Sorry, yes, I know High Tide is late. I’ll remove the paywall for all our readers to make it up to you.
On Today’s Tide
COVID-19 | Scary alarm scares everyone ft. poetry from Cyril.
COVID-19 | Search engine makes finding legit RATs easier.
Events | The one I’m speaking at on 11 March 9 AM HKT, duh. Also get high on wine (not literally) for 10% off with our HT exclusive code.
Not behind the paywall:
COVID-19 | Arrests over social media posts. Thousands of education staff to help out with mass testing. Man in court for going to restaurant knowing he had COVID. And more.
Transport | Cathay Pacific loses millions in 2021, comparatively a lot better than 2020.
Crime | Elderly man assaulted in Pacific Place. Former RTHK staff cleared of charges. And more!
Alert!!! Deafening alarm will notify you of designated hospital arrangements!
Normally “[Queen Elizabeth] has been converted into a ‘designated hospital’ to receive COVID-19 patients” wouldn’t be our top story of the day, BUT what has brought it here is the way it was announced – via a terrifying phone alert that scared the collective bejesus out of everyone in the Hong Kong SAR with a smartphone. The alert further tells people to not go to A&E unless they have COVID or are in critical condition, because they won’t be admitted otherwise. QE and three other hospitals will provide 9,000 more beds to COVID-19 patients with serious symptoms.
Cyril Ma, our Managing Ed-in-Chief and alert survivor (don’t worry he’s no less fine than he was before), recounts his experience:
My tutoring group
And my craft beer drinking group
All went into panic then hysterics
— Cyril Ma, Haiku 18:24 9 March
He actually got his alert in Chinese which he wasn’t able to read, so he was all the more confused at the time.
This emergency alert system is meant to be used for emergency scenarios, which in my experience has been to report ongoing child abductions or worse. These alerts have been used to spread urgent information on inclement weather conditions, safety incidents, and public health emergencies.
Feel free to debate on whether this QE alert was warranted.
New tool helps find approved RATs
The Consumer Council has launched a new search tool to help people identify government approved rapid antigen tests for the COVID-19 virus. Finding authentic tests has been a recent concern with the flood in demand for them, and the watchdog recommends people go to “more credible shops” to purchase.
New cases: 58,757 (25,991 confirmed by PCR)
The mainland has provided Hong Kong with over 38 million rapid test kits to give to those in need.
Senior care homes will take on a “closed-loop” system, meaning employees will be set up with hotel accommodations and designated transport to work to keep them away from the rest of the community (and reduce virus transmission).
Over half of workers in HK lost or saw a reduction in their income after testing positive for the virus. 39% were forced to take unpaid leave.
Nearly 900 infections were found in ten buildings (Tin Shui Wai, Kwun Tong, Mei Foo and Tuen Mun).
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Arrests over social media COVID posts
Even more COVID-19
Three people have been arrested for encouraging people to spread COVID and attack community testing centres online.
5,000 education staff have been recruited to assist with citywide testing needs.
The government’s dine-in bans on restaurants after 6 PM have had little to no effect on preventing virus transmission in the community during the third and fourth waves, according to a study done by the University of Hong Kong.
A woman has gotten a 14 day jail sentence for breaching compulsory quarantine in 2021.
Man goes to court for going to a restaurant knowingly after testing positive for COVID-19.
Cathay Pacific reports a US$703 million loss
Things aren’t looking hot for the airline, which has been struggling since the 2019 social unrest. Cathay Pacific reported a $703 million (in USD!!!) loss in 2021, which is apparently a “massive improvement” (SCMP’s words) compared to 2020.
I’d say support your local airline but probably not great timing for that.
Elderly man wounded in horrific assault
An elderly man in his 70s endured serious wounds inflicted by a random attacker at Pacific Place, an Admiralty shopping centre, yesterday night. According to camera footage, the victim was stomped on the head and chest repeatedly after he was forced to the ground. Not much information is available and an investigation is underway.
Ex-RTHK reporter has been acquitted of charges for possessing imitation firearms and walkie talkie in April 2020. Turns out they were meant for a sci-fi movie.
Woman foiled in unsuccessful murder plot gets 6.5 years in jail for possession of weaponry and murder conspiracy.
Doctor loses conviction appeal after receiving jail sentence for killing a woman while doing a beauty treatment.
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