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YouTube blocks Russian state-funded media channels globally

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(Last Updated On: March 12, 2022)

YouTube is immediately blocking access around the world to channels associated with Russian state-funded media, it said on Friday, citing a policy barring content that denies, minimizes or trivializes well-documented violent events.

The world’s most used streaming video service, which is owned by Alphabet Inc’s (GOOGL.O) Google, said Russia’s invasion of Ukraine now fell under its violent events policy and violating material would be removed, Reuters reported.

YouTube spokesman Farshad Shadloo said the blocking of the Russian outlets was in line with that policy.

Previously, YouTube had blocked leading Russia state-backed channels RT and Sputnik across Europe.

Russian state media have called restrictions placed on them by distributors, which include app stores and other social media services, unjustified censorship.

“The blocking by YouTube is nothing but a new turn of an atrocious attack on one of the fundamental principles of a democratic society – that is freedom of the press,” Sputnik said in a statement on Friday.

YouTube declined to specify which and how many channels had been blocked globally, or whether they ever would be restored.

Its policy states channels may be permanently blocked for repeated violations, a single case of severe abuse, or when they are dedicated to violating content.

Workers across Google had been urging YouTube to take additional punitive measures against Russian channels, accusing them of spreading false narratives about the Ukrainian leadership and civilian deaths during the war, according to three employees at the company, Reuters reported.

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Apple says it will manufacture iPhone 14 in India

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(Last Updated On: September 27, 2022)

Apple Inc (AAPL.O) said on Monday it will manufacture its latest iPhone 14 in India, as the tech giant moves some of its production away from China, Reuters reported.

The company launched the flagship iPhone 14 at an event earlier this month, where it focused on safety upgrades rather than flashy new technical specifications, with the exception of a new adventure-focused watch.

“The new iPhone 14 lineup introduces groundbreaking new technologies and important safety capabilities. We’re excited to be manufacturing iPhone 14 in India,” Apple said in a statement.

Analysts at J.P.Morgan expect Apple to move about 5% of iPhone 14 production from late 2022 to India, which is the world’s second-biggest smartphone market after China, read the report.

According to Reuters Apple could make one out of four iPhones in India by 2025, JPM analysts said in a note last week.

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US spy satellite launched into orbit from California

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(Last Updated On: September 26, 2022)

A classified satellite for the U.S. National Reconnaissance Office launched into orbit aboard a United Launch Alliance Delta 4 Heavy rocket on Saturday.

The NROL-91 spy satellite lifted off at 3:25 p.m. from Vandenberg Space Force Base in California’s Santa Barbara County, AP reported.

It was the last launch of a Delta 4 from the West Coast. Additional launches are planned from Florida before the Deltas are replaced by ULA’s next-generation Vulcan Centaur rockets.

The Delta IV Heavy configuration first launched in December 2004. This was the 387th flight of a Delta rocket since 1960 and the 95th and final launch from Vandenberg.

The National Reconnaissance Office is the government agency in charge of developing, building, launching and maintaining U.S. spy satellites that provide intelligence data to policymakers, the intelligence community and Defense Department.

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NASA delays moon rocket launch due to potential hurricane

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(Last Updated On: September 25, 2022)

NASA is skipping next week’s launch attempt of its new moon rocket Artemis 1 because of a tropical storm that’s expected to become a major hurricane.

It’s the third delay in the past month for the lunar-orbiting test flight featuring mannequins but no astronauts, a follow-up to NASA’s Apollo moon-landing program of a half-century ago. Hydrogen fuel leaks and other technical issues caused the previous scrubs, AP reported.

Currently churning in the Caribbean, Tropical Storm Ian is expected to become a hurricane by Monday and slam into Florida’s Gulf coast by Thursday. The entire state, however, is in the cone showing the probable path of the storm’s center — including NASA’s Kennedy Space Center.

Given the forecast uncertainties, NASA decided Saturday to forgo Tuesday’s planned launch attempt and instead prepare the 98-meter rocket for a possible return to its hangar.

Managers will decide Sunday whether to haul it off the launch pad.

If the rocket remains at the pad, NASA could try for an October 2 launch attempt, the last opportunity before a two-week blackout period. But a rollback late Sunday or early Monday likely would mean a lengthy delay for the test flight, possibly pushing it into November.

The Space Launch System rocket is the most powerful ever built by NASA. Assuming its first test flight goes well, astronauts would climb aboard for the next mission in 2024, leading to a two-person moon landing in 2025.

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