🌊 Free Tide: No more Google in HK?
Carrie Lam assures tech giants that fears over new legislation will be proven false
This is my third time writing High Tide, and I’ve definitively concluded that the introduction is by far the hardest part.
Usually, some witty punch line would go right here, but as I said, the introduction is the hardest part…
~ Sze Yu
Facebook, Google may quit Hong Kong over new law
Facebook, Google and other tech giants warn that they may stop offering services in Hong Kong if new anti-doxxing law goes ahead.
The Asia Internet Coalition (AIC) – which represents members including Facebook, Google, Twitter and Yahoo – said the proposed legislation to criminalise the malicious spreading of personal details (paywalled) was too vague and broad. The industry group stated that it was unfair to hold local staff responsible since most platforms provided their online services through offshore global or regional headquarters.
Carrie Lam sought to downplay concerns on Tuesday, telling the press that critics would be proven wrong as the new law takes effect.
“It is preferable to be able to assuage concerns and worries during the legislative process but sometimes through practice — such as the national security law forum yesterday — we can see that the national security law did not lead to situations as described by people who smeared it. It is the same for the Personal Data (Privacy) Ordinance.”
— Chief Executive Carrie Lam
Coronavirus in Hong Kong
New cases: 1 (imported)
Total cases: 11,945 cases so far (91 active cases, 212 total deaths, 11,642 total recovered)
A third batch of Sinovac vaccines arrived in Hong Kong on 6 July. The new batch, delivered from Beijing, contains about 1.7 million doses.
Hong Kong students hit record-high IB scores
130 students scored full marks on their IB exams this year, more than four times greater than last year’s number. Globally, the number of top scorers increased to 1,155 – eight times larger than that of last year.
According to SCMP, at least 21 top scorers (paywalled) are planning to continue their university studies in Hong Kong. At Diocesan Boy’s School, 17 out of 21 top scorers are planning to remain in the city.
IB is yet to publicly address the surprising surge in top scorers.
A Hong Kong mother is launching a public plea in hopes of finding a live liver donor for her one-year-old son. The toddler was diagnosed with liver failure and doctors say he is in critical condition. Donors must be between 18 and 60 years old, of Type A or O blood type and be of good physical health, with a BMI of under 30. Potential donors can go directly to Queen Mary Hospital to undergo testing to see if they are a match.
Under new measures, landlords of sub-divided flats will face fines of at least HK$10,000 if they overcharge tenants rent or utilities (paywalled). However, rights groups have criticised the regulations as not providing sufficient protection for tenants.
Carrie Lam pledges new laws to boost national security. On Tuesday, the Chief Executive said that “black violence has transformed from actions conducted by a crowd on the ground, to hidden, individualised acts.“ She also blamed the city’s lack of regulations on social media (paywalled).
Hong Kong police arrest nine people on suspicion of terrorist activities. The suspects were allegedly involved in a plot to bomb streets, courts and transport networks.
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