AP Business SummaryBrief at 12:17 p.m. EDT

Musk takes control of Twitter and faces a crash course in social media

Twitter’s new owner, self-proclaimed “free speech absolutist” Elon Musk, is about to take a crash course in global content moderation. One of its first actions after completing its $44 billion takeover was to fire key executives from the social media platform, including the platform’s woman in charge of trust and security. form. He also posted a conciliatory note to wary advertisers, assuring them that he won’t let Twitter turn into a “free-for-all hellscape”. The problem is that even the richest man in the world can’t have it both ways. And at least one major, hard-line advertiser wasn’t convinced he could pull it off. GM said Friday it was suspending advertising on Twitter.

Imminent elections in the United States and Brazil are a test for Musk’s Twitter

Pivotal elections in Brazil and the United States are likely to pose the first major challenges to Elon Musk and his promise to ease content moderation on Twitter. The platform’s new owner said he wanted to relax the rules created by Twitter to stop the flow of misinformation. Disinformation experts say a torrent of misinformation is already hitting voters in Brazil and the United States. If Musk quickly delivers on his promise, they say, this torrent could become a flood. One of Musk’s first moves was to fire the executive in charge of content moderation. He says a new committee will review the platform’s policies before any changes are made.

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Russia says it will suspend UN-brokered Ukraine export deal

KYIV, Ukraine (AP) — Russia’s Defense Ministry said Moscow has decided to suspend implementation of a UN-brokered grain export deal that saw more than 9 million tons of cereals exported from Ukraine and lowers world food prices. The ministry cited an alleged Ukrainian drone attack on Russian Black Sea Fleet ships moored off the coast of occupied Crimea, which Russia said took place early Saturday, as the reason for the move. Ukraine denied the attack. The Russian statement came a day after UN chief Antonio Guterres urged Russia and Ukraine to renew the deal. António Guterres also urged other, mainly Western, countries to speed up the removal of obstacles blocking Russian grain and fertilizer exports.

Before the rigors of winter, tourism is picking up again in the Mediterranean

CAPE SOUNION, Greece (AP) — Tourism is making a stronger comeback from the coronavirus pandemic than many expected. This is partly due to a strong US dollar and pent-up demand for travel to Europe after years of COVID-19 restrictions. This is a blessing for the economies of southern European countries like Greece, Italy, Spain and Cyprus. The travel bug has also helped ease the continent’s tilt towards recession caused by soaring energy prices, the war in Ukraine and the lasting disruptions of the pandemic. But experts warn the rebound is unlikely to last and hopes of building year-round holiday destinations are being stymied by a lack of long-term planning in Mediterranean economies.

Poland chooses the United States to build its first nuclear power plant

WARSAW, Poland (AP) — Poland said it chose the U.S. government and Westinghouse to build its first nuclear power plant. The announcement is a milestone in the Central European nation’s efforts to burn less coal and gain greater energy independence. Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki announced Friday night that Poland’s nuclear power project will use “reliable and safe technology” from Westinghouse. He said a strong alliance between Poland and the United States “guarantees the success of our joint initiatives.” US Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm said the $40 billion project would create or maintain more than 100,000 jobs for American workers. She said it also sent a message to Russia that it would no longer be allowed to “weaponize” energy.

Feds unveil plan to develop wind power while sparing rare whale

PORTLAND, Maine (AP) — The federal government has set out a strategy to try to protect an endangered species of whale while developing offshore wind power off the East Coast. President Joe Biden’s administration has made it a priority to encourage offshore wind along the Atlantic coast as the United States seeks greater energy independence. These waters are also home to the declining North Atlantic right whale, which numbers around 340 whales worldwide. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management released a draft plan this month to conserve whales while building wind projects.

Musk has taken over Twitter. Then some users started testing chaos

NEW YORK (AP) — Shortly after Elon Musk took over Twitter, some conservative figures wasted no time jumping onto the platform and recirculating long-debunked conspiracy theories in an attempt ironic to “test” if Twitter’s misinformation policies were still enforced. Twitter made no immediate policy change announcements. In a tweet posted on Friday afternoon, Musk said Twitter would form a “content moderation board with widely diverse views” and “no major content or account reinstatement decisions will be made until this board has get together”. But that hasn’t stopped users from encouraging — or criticizing — what they expected to be a quick buy-in to Musk’s promises to cut moderation in the name of promoting free speech.

Musk now has the chance to defeat Twitter’s many fake accounts

Twitter’s endless fight against spam accounts is now a problem for new owner Elon Musk. He pledged in April to defeat the scourge of robots or “die trying!” He then cited bots as a reason to give up buying the social platform. Now that the billionaire has closed the deal, he must deliver on his promise to clean up the fake profiles that have been bothering him and plaguing Twitter long before he expressed an interest in acquiring it. The bot count is important because advertisers – Twitter’s main source of revenue – want to know roughly how many real humans they reach when buying ads.

Groups in the United States: Protect Nevada’s flower from mine or face court

RENO, Nev. (AP) — Conservationists say they are ready to take federal wildlife officials to court in a three-year fight over endangered species protections for a rare wildflower in Nevada. Thiem buckwheat only exists at the site of a proposed lithium mine. The Fish and Wildlife Service concluded last October that the wildflower was threatened with extinction and proposed to declare it endangered. He had a year to finalize the list but missed the October 7 deadline. The Center for Biological Diversity sent the agency a formal notice this week of its intention to sue. The center obtained a court order requiring the agency to expedite its review two years ago.

North Macedonia launches construction of rail link with Bulgaria

SKOPJE, Macedonia (AP) — North Macedonia has started construction of a railway linking it to Bulgaria. The project is part of Pan-European Corridor VIII, a route stretching approximately 1,500 kilometers (930 miles) from the Albanian port of Durres in the west to the Bulgarian ports of Varna and Burgas in the east. Durres is connected by sea to the Italian port of Bari. The prime ministers of North Macedonia and Bulgaria attended the inauguration ceremony near the town of Kumanovo on Saturday, affirming their commitment to seeing the rail link between the two neighbors completed by 2030.

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