A mobile application, which allows wealthy older people to connect with young lovers, is facing restrictions in China after a surge in popularity in the country, state media reported on Friday.
SeekingArrangement, which was the most downloaded app on Apple Store China this week and also registered high numbers on Android, has been banned from WeChat — a popular Chinese messaging service similar to WhatsApp — Efe news reported citing the official newspaper China Daily.
The move came after the state-run Global Times — linked to the Communist Party of China — urged the government to shut down the app’s operations in the country for promoting “sugar dating”, a practice in which wealthy older suitors are matched with younger people in exchange for economic benefits or gifts.
Lawyers cited by official media warned that the services offered by such websites could be classified as prostitution, which is illegal in China.
The app was founded in 2006 by entrepreneur Brandon Wade, who has defended it by saying “love is a concept invented by poor people”, and has its Chinese headquarters in the Shanghai Free Trade Zone, which has fewer legal restrictions than the rest of the country.
Male members pay a monthly fee of $60, while females use the app for free or pay $15 to access more functions and are required to list their annual income, which should be higher than $47,000 to use the services. (IANS)
Apple is expecting more cooperation with China on clean energy as it released its 2019 Environment Report that outlines its climate change solutions ahead of Earth Day, which falls on April 22.
In the “Environmental Responsibility Report”, Apple has set an ambitious goal to “make products without taking from the Earth” and vowed to adopt “big steps” to reduce emissions of carbon dioxide from its business operations.
Apple said 44 of its suppliers have committed to 100 per cent renewable energy for their production of Apple products, Yonhap news agency reported late on Thursday.
Among them, “the majority of clean supply chain, clean energy suppliers are in China in terms of both attaining the clean energy goal and cooperation in the use of safer materials and smarter chemistry”, Lisa Jackson, Apple’s vice president of Environment, Policy and Social Initiatives, said at a recent event promoting the company’s environment initiative.
As one of Apple’s biggest manufacturers and markets in the world, China is critical to success in all of Apple’s environmental initiatives, she said.
“I think it’s important to know Chinese manufacturers can be partners in the innovation because the Chinese manufacturers have real expertise and applications which they can bring to the table,” she added.
In order to promote circular economy, Jackson said Apple is working with a number of partners including the China Association of Circular Economy to enable the movement of materials in a way that not only “protects the environment, protects innovation, but also moves us forward in reusing materials”.
Apple announced that it will quadruple the number of outlets in the US to recycle used iPhones returned by US customers, which will be disassembled by its recycling robot, Daisy.
Daisy can disassemble 15 different iPhone models at the rate of 200 per hour, according to Apple.
In response to a question over whether Apple is planning to deploy the Daisy robot system in Asia, especially in China, Jackson said Apple is looking at unique recycling solutions in China “because we have manufacturers there”.
“We need to do a lot more work in China. We need to work really closely with governments to move materials around,” she said.
“I would expect that we’re going to have some unique recycling solutions for China, and that would be great,” Jackson added.