Photo: Koichi Kamoshida/Getty Images.

Japan announced Wednesday that it will be leaving the International Whale Commission so that it can resume commercial whale hunting for the first time in 30 years, the AP reports.

The big picture: Previously, Japan had conducted whale hunting in the Southern Ocean as part of what it claimed was a research program, but environmentalists and officials from other nations criticized it as an illegitimate commercial hunt. Now the country's withdrawing from the IWC entirely. Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga, who said the organization is run by conservationists, said whale stocks have recovered enough to resume commercial hunts. Suga said commercial whaling will resume in July in Japanese territorial waters and economic zones only, leaving the controversial Antarctic waters alone.

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A wild weekend for Microsoft's play for TikTok

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

While its Big Tech rivals were testifying in front of a congressional antitrust committee last week, Microsoft was negotiating what could be the largest — and most politically perilous — tech acquisition of 2020.

The state of play: The hullabaloo surrounding Microsoft picking up TikTok has undergone a flurry of twists and turns over the weekend, as both the White House and the tech giant reacted in real time.

XFL sold to group that includes Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson for $15 million

Photo: Abbie Parr/Getty Images

The XFL sold Monday for $15 million to a group that includes former WWE star Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson, Sportico reports.

The state of play: The move does not necessarily mean the upstart football league is returning.

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Pac-12 football players threaten coronavirus opt-out

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

A group of Pac-12 football players have threatened to opt out of the season unless the conference addresses systemic inequities and concerns related to the coronavirus pandemic.

Why it matters: College football players have never had more leverage than they do right now, as the sport tries to stage a season amid the pandemic. And their willingness to use it shows we've entered a new age in college sports.