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TC Roundup: Alibaba's online payment firm Ant Financial eyes 2017 IPO

Alibaba's online payment firm Ant Financial eyes 2017 IPO: Ant Financial Services Group, Alibaba's affiliate which runs online payment platform Alipay, is seeking to raise up to $4 billion in a private placement of shares and is looking at a domestic IPO in 2017, the state-run Shanghai Securities News reported.

Alipay, China's most widely used online payment platform, is seen as a crucial part of Alibaba Group Holding Ltd's business, which ranges from e-commerce to entertainment. (Reuters)

Twitter will crackdown on serial trolls by tracking their phone number: Twitter has a troll problem. Even its CEO knows it. And now the company is doing more to prevent its users suffering abuse and threats on its service.

In a bid to make improvements, Twitter has announced new measures to expand the process for reporting user safety concerns, and a system that uses phone numbers to prevent those who repeatedly harass others from creating new accounts. (Tech Crunch)

China drops leading technology brands for state purchases: China has dropped some of the world's leading technology brands from its approved state purchase lists while approving thousands more locally made products in what some say is a response to revelations of widespread Western cyber surveillance.

Others put the shift down to a protectionist impulse to shield China's domestic technology industry from competition. (Recode)

Google reverses porn ban on Blogger after backlash: Just three days after announcing it was banning sexually explicit material on Blogger, Google said today it had changed its mind after an outcry from many long-time users of the blogging platform.

"This week, we announced a change to Blogger's porn policy," wrote Jessica Pelegio, social product support manager at Google, in a post in a product forum. We've had a ton of feedback, in particular about the introduction of a retroactive change (some people have had accounts for 10+ years), but also about the negative impact on individuals who post sexually explicit content to express their identities. So rather than implement this change, we've decided to step up enforcement around our existing policy prohibiting commercial porn." (Venture Beat)

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