πŸ“¬ Daily Brief: China and Saudi Arabia become friends

πŸ“¬ Daily Brief: China and Saudi Arabia become friends

Hello, Quartz readers!

Here’s what you need to know

China and Saudi Arabia have cemented their ties. The country’s leaders met yesterday (December 8) in Riyadh and signed several contracts including cloud computing and internet agreement with Huawei.

A trial for massive fraud has started in Germany. Former executives of payments company Wirecard are on trial in a case involving 1.9 billion euros ($2 billion) of missing funds.

The EU’s highest court has ruled that Google must delete the inaccurate data. The search engine will be forced to delete results on users in the EU if the information can be proven to be false.

The United States and Russia exchanged prisoners. American basketball player Brittney Griner has been freed in exchange for Russian arms dealer Viktor Bout.

New crypto tax rules are coming to the EU. The proposed legislation will allow tax declaration mandate for all crypto companies on the block, including non-EU operators with EU customers.

Construction has resumed at India’s premier transshipment port. Work on the $900 million The Adani Group’s project had come to a halt amid protests from displaced residents in the southern state of Kerala.

US regulators have filed a lawsuit to block Microsoft’s purchase of Activision Blizzard. The Federal Trade Commission said the deal would give the Xbox console maker a unfair advantage in industry.

To monitor

Tinseltown has little Christmas cheer to offer moviegoers this holiday season. The only movie starring Santa Claus in US theaters, violent night, is not a romantic comedy or a children’s film. The gory dark comedy Santa Meets John Wick, out December 2 and starring David Harbor from stranger thingsis an R-rated slasher.

Apples Fierya musical based on A Christmas Carol starring Will Ferrell and Ryan Reynolds, got a November 11 theatrical release before landing on Apple TV+ a week later, in time for Thanksgiving. This too was an exception: most of the Christmas films of this season go directly to streaming.

But what the box office lacks in elves and grumps will be made up for in plenty of blue aliens. Avatar: The Way of the Water, the highly anticipated sequel to James Cameron Avatarthe highest-grossing film of all time, hits the big screen worldwide on December 16.

It’s the season to be striking

Britons are preparing for a holiday season of delayed packages, canceled trains and medical shortages, as hundreds of thousands of workers plan to walk off the job amid a national cost of living crisis.

Some form of strike action is expected almost every day through to the end of December, in a wave of labor action that is expected to be largest in the UK since the late 1980s. The timeline below depicts the chaos, but may not show the true extent of the walkouts to come as unions continue to formulate plans. Just this week, Border Force, which handles passport checks at UK airports, announced a strike around Christmas and New Year’s Day.

The main demand of the different categories of workers is a wage increase in line with or above inflation. With UK inflation currently at 11.1%, this is a sticking point for many negotiations.

Image for article titled 🌏 China and Saudi Arabia become friends

Chart: Amanda Shendruck

A πŸ€– has not yet written this email

This week, ChatGPT, a text generator built by artificial intelligence company OpenAI, kept the internet on edge. The bot is activated when the user asks it a question, such as “How can I start a Quartz Weekend Brief on ChatGPT?” And then he spits out a fairly structured and formulaic response.

Despite all the hype generated by technology, the truth is that ChatGPT is not a good writer. But that’s okay, all ChatGPT needs to be is quite well. Good enough to point out that, not far down the line, a descendant of ChatGPT could very well produce an email like this. Then we’ll be in trouble, that’s for sure. But not yet.

✦ We explore the current limitations and potential avenues of ChatGPT in our next letter of the weekend (we actually wrote it). You’ll need a Quartz subscription to receive the email, which you can pick up today at 50% off the usual price.

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Surprising discoveries

Everyone in South Korea is about to get younger. who knew legal standardization could be so flattering?

Seabirds inspired a faster method of interstellar travel. Forget warp speed, what a spaceship really needs is “dynamic flight.”

Drowned denim gives a whole new meaning to pirate loot. A pair of jeans from an 1857 shipwreck sold for $95,000.

American hunters got the Taylor Swift Ticketmaster treatment. Request for 29,000 out of state beacons led Idaho’s online enrollment system to crash and admit”Hi, I’m the problem, it’s me.”

Dyson has set the price for a breath of fresh air. Remember the corporate cyborg noise canceling headphones which also purify the air? They have officially been priced at $950 a pair.

Our best wishes for a productive day. Send news, comments, bureaucratic skincare and ocean-washed jeans to hi@qz.com. Drive support makes Quartz accessible to everyoneβ€”Become a member. Today’s Daily Brief is brought to you by Sofia Lotto Persio, Diego Lasarte, Aurora Almendral, Julia Malleck and Morgan Haefner.

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