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Chinese web users blast Musk over space station near-misses

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Chinese web users blast Musk over space station near-misses


Although Musk is widely admired in China, the reputation of Tesla — which sells tens of thousands of vehicles in the country each month — has faltered – Copyright AFP/File STR

Chinese web users slammed billionaire Elon Musk on Tuesday after Beijing said its space station took evasive action to avoid hitting two of his SpaceX satellites, dealing a blow to the tycoon’s reputation in a country that has embraced his Tesla electric cars.

China’s Tiangong space station was forced to take “preventive collision avoidance control” during two “close encounters” with SpaceX’s Starlink satellites in July and October, according to a document submitted to the UN’s space agency by Beijing this month.

On both occasions, the satellites moved into orbits that prompted space station operators to change course, the document said.

“The manoeuvre strategy was unknown and orbital errors were hard to be assessed”, Beijing said of the satellite involved in the October incident, adding that it took action to “ensure the safety and lives of in-orbit astronauts”.

Tiangong — meaning “heavenly palace” — is the latest achievement in China’s drive to become a major space power, after landing a rover on Mars and sending probes to the Moon.

Its core module entered orbit earlier this year, with the station expected to be fully operational by 2022.

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Chinese social media users blasted Musk and his companies over the incident, with one hashtag racking up 87 million views by Tuesday morning.

“How ironic that Chinese people buy Tesla, contributing large sums of money so Musk can launch Starlink, and then he [nearly] crashes into China’s space station,” one user commented.

“Prepare to boycott Tesla,” said another, in a nod to a common response in China to foreign brands perceived to be acting contrary to Beijing’s national interests.

Some speculated that Washington would have imposed sanctions if the roles were reversed.

“Why don’t we just do what they do?” one wrote.

California-based SpaceX did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Although Musk is widely admired in China, the reputation of Tesla — which sells tens of thousands of vehicles in the country each month — has faltered this year following a spate of crashes, scandals and data storage concerns.

But Tesla is still hugely popular and sells around one out of every four of its cars in the country, as well as building a rare wholly-owned factory in Shanghai.

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LinkedIn tests New ‘Discover’ Feed, New Groups Elements in Order to Enhance Engagement

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LinkedIn tests New ‘Discover’ Feed, New Groups Elements in Order to Enhance Engagement

LinkedIn has announced some new updates to help facilitate more discovery and engagement in the app, including a new ‘Discover’ feed, more contextual info on job listings and updates for groups.

Each of these updates has some level of functional value, and it’ll be interesting to see how LinkedIn members take to the options, or not, over the coming months.

First off, LinkedIn’s currently testing a new ‘Discover’ feed, which, as is the trend of the moment in social media, aims to highlight algorithmically recommended content that you may be interested in, based on your in-app activity.

As you can see in these example screens, LinkedIn’s Discover feed will highlight newsletters, videos, events and more, matched to you, based on your interests. So it’s kind of like TikTok’s ‘For You’ feed, but for professional updates on LinkedIn.

Sounds weird? Yeah, it kind of seems it.

I mean, it could be good, but whether people really want to see an expanded set of updates from people and businesses that they don’t already follow, and aren’t already connected to, seems questionable, given established behaviors in the app.

Still, it’s worth an experiment, and it’ll be interesting to see whether it helps the platform build on its current ‘record levels’ of engagement. It could also provide more capacity for discovery among LinkedIn users that are interested in your sector – which could be another reason to keep your LinkedIn content flowing.

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LinkedIn’s been testing the new feed over the past month, with some users now seeing the new Discover tab in the app.

Here’s a video of how it works in practice:

On another front, LinkedIn’s also adding a new ‘Meet the team’ section on the details page in job listings, in order to help applicants get a better feel for who the team is, what they’re working towards, as well as links to their LinkedIn profiles, so candidates can get a better understanding of what they’re interested in, and passionate about.

LinkedIn Meet the Hiring team

As you can see in this example, the new display will feature both the job poster as well as members of the hiring team that shared the job.

“In addition, it will show the mutual connections (including 2nd-degree connections) between the applicant and the hiring team, to help facilitate a productive conversation.”

LinkedIn’s also testing a new ‘Celebrations’ display in your ‘Notifications’ stream, in order to better enable members to keep up with the latest job milestones, changes, work anniversaries, etc.

LinkedIn Celebrations

As you can see here, the new prompts will give you more ways to stay in touch with your connections, based on key changes and events. It could be a good way to stay front of mind with important connections – though it could also lead to more spam (like templated birthday messages from people who never engage with you otherwise).

Finally, LinkedIn’s also adding some new elements for LinkedIn Groups, the once thriving engagement element that, for a long time now, has been largely ignored, and has become so filled with spam in many groups that it’s just not worth joining.

Still, LinkedIn says that many people get significant value from Groups:

We often hear from members how much they cherish their LinkedIn Groups experience. For millions of professionals around the world, groups are the go-to for advice, support, and industry tips on LinkedIn.”

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‘Cherish’ seems like an exuberant descriptor here, but nonetheless, LinkedIn’s looking to foster more group engagement, with new features like additional acceptance criteria for joining a group, and personalized welcome notes for new members.

LinkedIn groups updates

Not sure they add much to the overall groups experience, but they do provide more ways for group admins to manage their communities, which could ensure more people do indeed ‘cherish’ their time in groups.

These new options don’t offer a heap of functional value, but they are enhancements to the current LinkedIn experience, which could have value in varying use cases and contexts.

The options also move LinkedIn more into line with other social apps, with algorithmic recommendations, improved group tools and more.

Which makes a lot of sense, and at the least, it’s worth LinkedIn trying these things out, in order to see what types of response it can get.



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