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China’s top livestreamer returns after 3-month disappearance following ‘tank cake’ controversy

  • China's top livestreaming sales influencer Li Jiaqi has returned to livestreaming after a three-month-long absence following his presentation of an ice cream tank on the eve of the Tiananmen Square protest anniversary.
  • The ice cream resembled the military tanks that became a widely recognized symbol of the pro-democracy protests at Tiananmen Square in 1989.
  • Upon his return to streaming, Li did not give any explanation for his disappearance, nor did his studio.
  • His fans were quick to flood his livestream with comments welcoming him back. Viewers bought out the goods he was selling faster than expected, which caused Li to end the show earlier than usual.

China’s top livestreaming sales influencer has returned to screens after a three-month-long absence following his presentation of an ice cream tank on the eve of the Tiananmen Square protest anniversary. 

Li Jiaqi, also known as the “Lipstick King,” is known for his livestreaming channel on Alibaba Group’s Taobao Marketplace, where he sells products ranging from cosmetics to food brands.

Bretman Rock does ‘balut unboxing’ after delicacy is ranked worst egg dish in world

  • The online travel guide Taste Atlas ranked the Philippines’s tortang talong as one of the best-rated egg dishes in the world and the balut as the worst.
  • Tortang talong, an eggplant omelet, received a 4.7 rating out of 5, while balut, a fertilized egg embryo that is boiled and eaten from the shell, got a rating of 2.7, according to their visitor poll.
  • Filipino influencer and social media personality Bretman Rock took to his Instagram story to unbox and eat balut.
  • He expressed his love for the food, showed his followers its contents and commented on people’s disgust of the Filipino delicacy.

Filipino influencer Bretman Rock took to his Instagram story to eat balut after it was ranked the worst egg dish in the world. 

Earlier this month, the online travel guide Taste Atlas ranked the Philippines’s tortang talong as one of the best-rated egg dishes in the world and the balut as the worst. 

Asian Americans are still rarely represented in video games — here are 10 of our favorite characters

Video games have become an integral part of many people’s lives. Impressive graphics and visuals, catharsis-inducing soundtracks and compelling storylines have slowly shifted the stigma surrounding the interactive medium from mind-rotting wastes of time to legitimate works of art. 

With the rising popularity and prevalence of Asian American characters in mainstream film and television, I wanted to highlight 10 Asian American video game characters to not only celebrate some of my favorites, but to also critique the severe lack of representation in video games. For this list, I focused strictly on characters who are identified in their respective games or franchises as American and represent a spectrum of Asian representation. Frankly, it’s a miracle I was able to come up with 10 characters at all.

Crematoriums in Hong Kong at capacity, coffin supply running out amid devastating COVID-19 wave

  • Hong Kong Chief Executive Carrie Lam announced on Wednesday that the new wave of COVID-19 cases and deaths is overwhelming the region’s healthcare system.
  • The local government’s first rapid test results saw 962,581 new COVID-19 cases, raising Hong Kong’s total number of cases to 975,212 since the pandemic started.
  • “Our crematoriums are working day and night, and they are already close to their capacity,” Lam said. “Within such a short period of time, we have seen so many deaths, and that would affect the logistics of funeral matters.”
  • The recent deaths, which have reached a total of 4,847 since the pandemic started, mostly affected residents of nursing homes, as well as the unvaccinated and the elderly.

Crematoriums in Hong Kong are reportedly filling up as the region nears 1 million infections and faces the world’s highest COVID-19 death rate in its current outbreak.

Hong Kong Chief Executive Carrie Lam told reporters during a press conference on Wednesday that the new wave of COVID-19 cases and their resulting deaths is putting a strain on the region’s healthcare system. 

China accuses Taiwan for ‘taking advantage’ of Ukraine crisis by giving financial aid to its refugees

  • China criticized Taiwan on Wednesday for sending aid to Ukraine and imposing sanctions on Russia, saying the island was “taking advantage of others’ difficulties.”
  • The allegation came after Taiwan announced an $11.5 million donation for displaced Ukrainians on Tuesday, following an initial donation of $3.5 million and salary pledges from top government officials.
  • China also said Taiwan “only has itself to blame” if it gets sanctioned by Russia. Last week, Russia added Taiwan to its list of “unfriendly” countries and territories.

China has accused Taiwan of using Ukraine for its own political advantage as the self-governed island delivers a new round of aid for refugees this week.

After an initial donation of $3.5 million, Taiwan is sending another $11.5 million to help displaced Ukrainians, its Ministry of Foreign Affairs announced on Tuesday. Earlier this month, President Tsai Ing-wen, Vice President William Lai and Premier Su Tseng-chang each pledged a month’s salary to donate to Ukrainian refugees.

Controversial Wilmington police sergeant being investigated for ‘China virus’ Facebook post

  • A Wilmington police sergeant is under investigation after posting an anti-Asian comment on Facebook.
  • The police sergeant, Stephanie Castellani, posted to a Middletown neighborhood Facebook page labeling COVID-19 as “the China virus.”
  • Castellani has a history of posting inflammatory claims on Facebook where she once suggested that 9/11 was organized by the U.S. government and spread false information about COVID-19.
  • The Wilmington Police Department has been facing scrutiny for allegedly being a hostile work environment towards minority officers.
  • Residents of Wilmington expressed their disdain over Castellani’s behavior and condemned the 20-year police veteran for having a poor understanding of the community.

A Wilmington police sergeant is facing an internal investigation after she posted an anti-Asian Facebook post to a local neighborhood page that referred to COVID-19 as the “China virus.”

Stephanie Castellani, a 20-year police veteran, uploaded a post to a Middletown neighborhood Facebook page that labeled COVID-19 as the “China virus,” reported Delaware Online. In the post, she allegedly wrote, “And just like that… the CHINNNA VIRUS miraculously disappeared.”

Eileen Gu celebrates International Women’s Day with video of a speech she made when she was 12 years old

eileen gu speech
  • Eileen Gu, the 18-year-old Olympic freestyle skier, took to Instagram this International Women’s Day to share a speech she made at the age of 12 about women’s empowerment and representation in sports.
  • “Although being a girl in a male-dominated sport can be difficult, I’m actually thankful that I've had the experiences that I had,” Gu said in her speech. “My experiences have made me more tenacious and have taught me to meet my stepbacks in life with open arms. In fact, after this encounter, I’ve become a better skater.”
  • In her post, the now Olympic gold medalist also celebrated her achievements and thanked the women in her life by sharing photos of herself, her mother and her grandmother.

Olympic gold medalist Eileen Gu took to Instagram this International Women’s Day to share a speech she gave at 12 years old about women’s empowerment and representation. 

“Celebrating female power today and every day,” Gu captioned her post. “Six years ago, baby Eileen gave a speech on Title IX and the importance of representation and equity in sports. Three Olympic medals and at least a foot of growth later, my message remains unchanged.”

Kit Kat Japan gets the anime treatment in stylish promo directed by Naoko Yamada

Nestle Japan Kit Kat
  • Renowned animator Naoko Yamada directed an anime-inspired promotional video for Kit Kat in Japan.
  • The 15-second animation is part of the brand’s “Kikkake wa Kit Kat de” (“Kit Kat Creates the Chance”) campaign, which spreads messages of encouragement to Japanese consumers.
  • Kit Kat sounds similar to “kitto katsu,” a Japanese phrase which means “You will surely win!”
  • The promotional video shows several moments in which a little encouragement goes a long way, including the start of a new relationship and new friendships.
  • Yamada will reportedly direct at least one more short film that will incorporate real-life stories of people who love eating Kit Kat bars.

Nestlé Japan has released an anime-inspired promotional video for Kit Kat.

Helmed by renowned Japanese animator Naoko Yamada, the short animation is part of the brand’s new “Kikkake wa Kit Kat de” (“Kit Kat Creates the Chance”) campaign, reported SoraNews24.

Ex-officers Tou Thao, J. Alexander Kueng, Thomas Lane found guilty of violating George Floyd’s civil rights

George Floyd police
  • Former Minneapolis police officers Tou Thao, J. Alexander Kueng and Thomas Lane were all convicted of failing to provide George Floyd the medical care he needed during his suffering that resulted in his death on May 25, 2020.
  • Thao and Kueng were also convicted of failing to stop Derek Chauvin from murdering Floyd.
  • Floyd’s brother Philonise refused to call the verdicts “justice” and described them as “just accountability,” since they cannot bring back his loved one.
  • All three ex-officers are still facing a separate trial for state charges.

Former Minneapolis police officers Tou Thao, J. Alexander Kueng and Thomas Lane have been convicted of violating George Floyd’s civil rights, which led to his death on May 25, 2020.

After a month-long trial, a federal jury in St. Paul, Minnesota, determined that all three officers deprived Floyd of medical care while he suffocated under ex-officer Derek Chauvin, who was convicted of his murder last April.

Chinese crypto influencer makes over $5 million in 10 days selling her photos as NFTs

NFT IreneDAO
  • Chinese influencer Yuqing Irene Zhao successfully launched an NFT collection with the slogan: “SIMP: Simplicity, Integrity, Meaning, and Purpose.”
  • The collection features images of the crypto influencer in different poses with slang used in the crypto community, such as “gm,” “wen Binance” and “yes ser.”
  • The influencer’s collection follows in the footsteps of “Ghozali Everyday,” an NFT collection that made Indonesian college student Sultan Gustaf Al Ghozali a millionaire.
  • Zhao is also creating a platform that will allow other influencers to create their own NFTs.

A Chinese influencer’s non-fungible token (NFT) project has reached a trading volume of 2,300 ether (around $5.5 million) less than two weeks after its launch.

Singapore-based Yuqing Irene Zhao, 28, created the IreneDAO collection based on a sticker pack she made for her Telegram community, reported Cointelegraph

Dior sparks local controversy over photo of Asian woman at Shanghai exhibition

Dior Draws Controversy over photo of Asian woman

Dior has drawn criticism in China over a photo in its exhibition that purportedly caters to Western aesthetics vilifying Asian women.

Driving the news: The image, shot by Chinese photographer Chen Man, appeared in the French brand’s “LADY DIOR” exhibit in Shanghai. It shows an Asian woman wearing a traditional dress and holding a Dior bag to complete her look.

Vietnamese American lecturer lived in a tent for two years while pursuing her PhD in the UK

doctorate

A Vietnamese American academic battled the cold for two years when she ended up homeless while pursuing a doctorate and teaching classes in the U.K.

How it happened: Aimée Lê, who obtained her Ph.D. in 2018, was forced to live in a tent after facing a rent increase in her third year of study at Royal Holloway, University of London. She revealed her plight in a recent interview with The Guardian.