China tightens political control of internet giants

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BEIJING (AP) — After flourishing for two decades with little regulation, China’s internet industries face a future of tighter control by the ruling Communist Party and pressure to pay for its tech ambitions, social welfare and propaganda. E-commerce platform Alibaba, games and social media operator Tencent and other tech giants have lost as much as $800 billion in stock market value since Beijing launched a barrage of anti-monopoly, data security and other crackdowns in late 2020. Businesspeople, lawyers and economists say Beijing wants to rein in e-commerce, social media and other companies it worries are too big and independent — even if economic growth suffers.

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