News Headlines - 31 March 2021

Alex Salmond becomes leader of new pro-independence Alba Party ahead of Scottish elections | Sky News

Scotland's former first minister Alex Salmond has re-entered frontline politics to become the leader of the new pro-independence Alba Party.
The party was registered with the Electoral Commission in January by retired TV producer Laurie Flynn and has now been formally launched by Mr Salmond.
Alba Party will stand candidates - including Mr Salmond himself - in the Scottish parliament elections on 6 May.

China sharply reduces elected seats in Hong Kong legislature : The Asahi Shimbun

China has sharply reduced the number of directly elected seats in Hong Kong’s legislature in a setback for the territory's already beleaguered democracy movement.
The changes were announced Tuesday after a two-day meeting of China’s top legislature.
The legislature will be expanded to 90 seats, and only 20 will be elected by the public. Currently, half of the 70-seat legislature--35 seats--is directly elected.

Japan Personal Info Commission Inspects Line - JIJI PRESS

The Japanese government's Personal Information Protection Commission on Wednesday conducted an on-site inspection of Line Corp., after an incident in which data of users of the messaging app provider were left available to a Chinese affiliate.
Investigators from the commission visited Line and its parent, Z Holdings Corp., based on the personal information protection law.

Man fined ¥9,000 over 'Terrace House' star Hana Kimura’s suicide | The Japan Times

A man has been charged over online abuse directed at a Japanese star of Netflix reality show “Terrace House” who took her own life last year, prosecutors said Tuesday.
A spokesman for Tokyo Prosecutors’ Office said they had made a “summary indictment against a man in his 20s” following the May 2020 death of Hana Kimura, a cast member of the internationally popular TV show.

Sony Buys Paul Simon's Publishing Rights - Rolling Stone

Paul Simon has sold his publishing rights to Sony Music Publishing, the company announced Wednesday - marking the latest blockbuster catalog deal in the booming music-rights acquisition space.
Sony bought the total collection of his catalog, a spokesperson said, but declined to give financial details of the deal... Bob Dylan sold his catalog for nearly $400 million in his deal with Universal Music Publishing Group, sources have told Rolling Stone, while Stevie Nicks reportedly took $100 million in her publishing sale with Primary Wave. Other prominent legacy acts including Neil Young and Lindsay Buckingham have sold their publishing rights this year while Mick Fleetwood sold his recorded rights to BMG.