Welcome to The Fix’s weekly news digest! Every week, we bring you important news stories  from the world of media – and try to put them in a wider context.

News Corp, a global media corporation owned by Rupert Murdoch, revealed that it was a victim of a cyber attack linked to China. Discovered in late January, the attack affected the company’s subsidiary News UK, which publishes The Times, The Sunday Times and The Sun, as well as its American firm Dow Jones, The Wall Street Journal’s owner.

As Reuters notes, the company’s “internet security adviser said the hack was likely aimed at gathering intelligence for Beijing’s benefit.” The attack is said to have been contained, but some data was taken by the perpetrators; however, the nature and the extent of the attack are not clear yet.

The news comes in the wake of increasing tension between China and Western countries, particularly the United States, which has affected the journalists’ ability to report in China and on China over the past couple of years.

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In more news about China and its impact on the European press, deteriorating press freedom in China has become particularly visible during the ongoing 2022 Winter Olympics in Beijing. 

As Axios highlights, this year’s Olympics display the Chinese government’s press intimidation particularly vividly, with incidents like manhandling a Dutch journalist as he was broadcasting live, as well as practices like following journalists and preventing them from interviewing people.

The situation is notably different than during the 2008 Summer Olympics held in China, when the country’s authorities made a point to open up to the world. This time, “leaders in Beijing seem less interested in garnering approbation from Western democracies and their reporters,” Axios writes. 

In the US, a bipartisan group of senators introduced a bill that “could force Facebook to change how the news feed works,” The Verge reports. The Social Media NUDGE Act aims to fight harmful content by changing the way social networks distribute information, such as by explicitly asking users to read an article before sharing it.

Overall, the bill calls for new government research into the ways to “reduce addiction and the amplification of harmful content,” as well as for social platforms to be accountable for implementing the recommendations put forward by the research. 

While it’s one of numerous bills that have been proposed to regulate social media, and its prospects aren’t clear at the moment, it is a part of growing backlash to the societal role of big social platforms from regulators and politicians across the West. 

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As the interest in live blogs is growing, the BBC is launching a new live team with 31 journalists, PressGazette reports.

According to PressGazette, the broadcaster “looks to expand its live page coverage beyond the pandemic with new topics, formats and use of video,” making it one of the cornerstones of the BBC’s digital journalism.

Big events like school closures during the pandemic and the US election attract millions of people, making it beneficial for news organizations to invest in live coverage. The pandemic accelerated interest to live blogs, with other big outlets like New York Times investing more resources as well.

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