Sunday's Oscar ceremony drew 43 million television viewers in the United States, delivering the biggest audience for the Academy Awards in a decade, broadcaster ABC said. Nielsen ratings data on Monday showed the audience that watched slavery drama "12 Years a Slave" capture the best picture honor grew 6.4 percent from last year. Producers' middle-of-the-road approach to the show with host Ellen DeGeneres gave the Walt Disney Co-owned network similar results among younger viewers compared with last year when they gambled with edgier comedian Seth MacFarlane as host. The show, which critics found humorous, inoffensive but at times dull, proved to be a smash on social media as DeGeneres' staged "selfie" with several stars in the audience set the record for most retweets on Twitter, surpassing 2 million.
Sears Holdings Corp said Friday it has launched an investigation to determine whether it was the victim of a security breach, following Target Corp's revelation at the end of last year that it had suffered an unprecedented cyber attack. "There have been rumors and reports throughout the retail industry of security incidents at various retailers and we are actively reviewing our systems to determine if we have been a victim of a breach," Sears spokesman Howard Riefs said in a statement on Friday. He did not say when the operator of Sears department stores and Kmart discount stores had begun the investigation or provide other information about the probe. Sears Holdings Corp operates nearly 2,500 retail stores in the United States and Canada.
By Li Hui and Ben Blanchard BEIJING (Reuters) – A scathing report on corruption at the company that built China's $59-billion Three Gorges dam, the world's biggest hydropower scheme, has reignited public anger over a project funded through a special levy paid by all citizens. The report by the ruling Communist Party's anti-graft watchdog last week found that some officials at the Three Gorges Corporation, set up in 1993 to run the scheme, were guilty of nepotism, shady property deals and dodgy bidding procedures. Between 1992 and 2009, all citizens had to pay a levy built into power prices across China to channel money to the dam's construction, a project overshadowed by compulsory relocations of residents and environmental concerns. The Three Gorges Corporation published a statement on its website on Tuesday saying it would look into the issues the probe raised, and strictly punish any corrupt conduct and violations of the law and party discipline.
(Reuters) – EBay Inc founder and Chairman Pierre Omidyar rejected investor Carl Icahn's call to separate the company's fast-growing PayPal payments unit, saying the businesses were better off together. Omidyar, who is the largest shareholder in eBay with a stake of 8.37 percent, said separating PayPal from eBay was not a new idea and the board had evaluated the option but decided to keep the businesses together. Icahn, who disclosed a 2.15 percent stake in the e-commerce company last week, had also accused two long-time eBay board members, Marc Andreessen and Scott Cook, of having business interests that directly competed with eBay.