Tag Archives: Internet

Wen Yunchao: An Open Letter to the Investors of Sina

Note: Below is a translation of an open letter written by Wen Yunchao (twitter: @wenyunchao), an outspoken blogger and free speech activist on the Chinese Internet. It is addressed to the investors of Sina Corp, and explores the censorship practices and implications of the corporate structure of the company, which runs the most popular microblogging service in China. If you are not familiar with Wen Yunchao, the recent New York Times feature about him, Where an Internet Joke is Not Just a Joke, is strongly recommended. For an extensive discussion of the methods used by Sina to censor its micro-blogging service, be sure to read the blog post by Jason Ng at Kenengba. The post is in Chinese, but William Farris has provided a helpful English summary.

Update: If you would like to sign the letter, you can send your name, country and occupation to wenyunchao@gmail.com.

Wen Yunchao: An Open Letter to the Investors of Sina

Dear Investors of Sina Corp,

We issue this open letter because Chinese Internet company Sina and its microblogging service, Sina Weibo, fully cooperate with the Chinese government to censor and suppress the free speech of online citizens, without regard to any principle. Their behavior is disgusting.

The blog “Kenengba”, which received the Best Chinese Blog award in the 6th Deutsche Welle Best of the Blogs (BOBs) competition in 2010, once published the article “Ten Impressions I’ve gotten from Sina Weibo”. The article summarizes the censorship tactics of Sina Weibo, including keyword screening and post deletion, unidirectional blocking, screening of posts, banning of speech, “The Little Secretary Helps You”, account deletion, blocking of re-registration, and blocking of IP. The article also uses the case of Sina’s plagiarism from the Google-focused website Guao (http://www.guao.hk/) to illustrate how Sina Weibo not only cooperates with the government on censorship, but also deletes users’ information on its free will. ((可能吧:新浪微博给我印象最深刻的10件事, http://www.kenengba.com/post/3019.html))

Beifeng, well-known Chinese blogger and winner of the 2010 annual award of the French National Consultative Commission on Human Rights, writes: “Sina not only cooperates with the authority to impose censorship, it also conforms to their requests to frame certain people.” The article highlights the practice of Sina to change the account name of a user so that others can use the original name to publish contents which can endanger that user with legal liabilities. ((北风:新浪配合“他们”作恶的明确证据, http://www.bullogger.com/blogs/wenyc1230/archives/383569.aspx))

Xiao Han, associate professor at the China University of Politics and Law, “protests against Sina’s account deletion through reincarnation.” In his article “Why I leave Sina Weibo”, he writes, “the outrageous behavior of the administrators (the banning of unused ID intended for reincarnation) is for all to see. They abuse their power to destroy other people. Although they only destroy IDs, their way of thinking is the same as the Communist Party.” Xiao Han’s blog, on which the article was published, has also been removed by Sina. ((萧瀚:我为什么离开新浪微博? http://news.jcwb.net/news_of_microblog/378.html))

Furthermore, a video on YouTube entitled “How Sina Weibo deceives its users” clearly shows how Sina Weibo limits the number of followers of some accounts. Ms Liu Ping is an indepedent candidate for the local people’s congress of Jiangxi province. Because of her candidateship, over 30,000 people follow her on Sina Weibo at some point. But then Sina Weibo uses deception to reduce her followings. When other users click to follow her on Weibo, the system will send a message showing that the operation is successful, when in fact it is not. Now, the number of followers of Liu Ping’s account has dropped to 20,000. ((Youtube:新浪微博是如何故意欺骗用户的? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=543pH7uUd-g))

Chinese internet users cannot count on any legal remedies against the actions of Sina which go beyond the bottom line.

Chinese netizens have previously tried to sue Chinese Internet companies for their censorship practices. But none of the cases have ever received a trial. On 16 August 2007, Chinese human rights lawyer Liu Xiaoyuan went to the Beijing Haidian court to sue Internet services provider Sohu for hiding blog posts. The court accepted and filed the case on the same day. But on 12 September, the same court refused to accept the case, which was assigned the civil case number 23191. Liu appealed to no avail.

Some suggest to sue Sina in its place of registration or listing. However, according to publicly available information, what we normally refer to as the Sina portal is different from and has no subordinate relationship with the NASDAQ-listed Sina Corp.

The NASDAQ-listed Sina Corp is a holding company registered in the Cayman Islands. It has four subsidiaries, namely the Hong Kong Sina Co. Ltd. (which operates the Hong Kong Sina portal), Lifang (Hong Kong) Investment Co. Ltd., the California-registered Sina Online (which includes two Sina portals in North America and Taiwan), and the British Virgin Islands-registered Sina Limited.

In mainland China, Sina has registered several companies using the variable interest entities (VIEs) structure, including Beijing Sina Information Technology Co. Ltd., Sina Interactive Corp, Sitonglifang Software Corp, and Beijing MicroDream Creation Internet Technology Co. Ltd. Sina Information Technology operates the content part of the Sina portal, and holds the ICP, news publishing permit and other relevant licenses; MicroDream operates Sina Weibo and independently holds the ICP and other licenses.

Sina Interactive is fully in charge of the advertising business on the Sina portal and Weibo, while Sitonglifang provides technical support to Sina Information Technology and MicroDream. Advertising and gaming revenues from the Sina portal and Weibo are shared to Sina Interactive through an agreement. For Sifanglitong, it receives revenues in the form of fees for technical support. In turn, profits from these two companies are transferred to a subsidiary fully owned by the listed Sina Corp through other agreements.

The Sina portal and Weibo cooperate with the Chinese government on censorship, and they are respectively operated by Beijing Sina Information Technology Co. Ltd. and Beijing MicroDream Creation Internet Technology Co. Ltd. These are purely Chinese entities which only have business and contract relationships but no direct affiliation with the listed Sina Corp. Therefore, it is impossible to force them to stop censorship by taking action in the place of registration or listing of Sina Corp.

In 2011, several New York residents tried to sue Baidu Corp in a US district court for “shielding” the information they published online. Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Jiang Yu said that China’s management of the Internet is in line with international practices. This is an act of sovereignty which foreign courts have no jurisdiction under international law.

We know that China has severe restriction on public speech, and it is not realistic to request Sina to completely abandon censorship. However, in view of the reality that Chinese netizens have no effective channels to limit the behaviors of Sina, we believe that appealing to the investors of Sina Corp to reduce their shareholding could weaken Sina’s efforts in censorship. This can force Sina to follow clear censorship rules and ensure that users can seek judicial relief in China or third places.

According to Sina Corp’s 2011 second quarter financial report, although revenue has increased year on year, the net profit is down 60.3% to US$10 million. “The operating expense of the second quarter of 2011 is US$59.7 million, compared with US$32 million for the same period last year. The increase in operating expense is mainly related to Weibo marketing and human resources.” According to outside estimates, Sina employs nearly 1,000 people to censor Weibo. For some time in future, Sina Corp will continue to increase spending on marketing and staffing related to Weibo. We think that it is feasible to pressure Sina to reduce its censorship efforts by dumping Sina’s stocks.

The Chinese government’s policy on Weibo has a significant effect on the prospects of Sina. Holding the shares of Sina Corp entails tremendous uncertainty. On 20 September 2011, the share price of Sina dropped by 15.17% to US$92.76, the greatest daily drop since December 2008. Sina’s market capitalization has shrinked by US$1 billion to US$6 billion. Market commentators attribute this drop to concerns over regulatory risks. ((第一财经日报:微博监管风险重挫新浪股价 http://www.21cbh.com/HTML/2011-9-22/wMNDA3XzM2NzUwMg.html))

On 17 October 2011, Beijing Daily published an anonymous op-ed titled “Lack of credibility will mean the end of Weibo”, which calls for a real-name registration system for Weibo. ((北京日报:网络微博诚信缺失将无以立足, http://news.xinhuanet.com/politics/2011-10/17/c_122165528.htm)) The article criticizes the serious shortcomings which come with the rapid growth of Weibo. If left unchecked, these problems will threaten the society. It urges the government to purify the Internet through more comprehensive and targeted measures so that new media will be responsible for ensuring integrity. It suggests that the government should fully implement a real-name registration system for Weibo and an accountability system for online media. Guangdong’s Southern Metropolitan Daily thinks that “a strict real-name system may drive away users.” ((南方都市报:微博要搞实名制? http://gcontent.oeeee.com/6/9a/69a5b5995110b36a/Blog/9a1/4437ac.html))

In a recent interview with CCTV’s program Economic Half-hour, Sina CEO Charles Chao commented that Weibo will be the future driving force of Sina. ((曹国伟:微博将是新浪未来驱动力, http://finance.sina.com/bg/tech/sinacn/20110226/0635235624.html)) China’s regulatory policy towards Weibo will undoubtedly have a significant impact on the prospect of Sina. As social conflicts are becoming more acute, the government’s control on the society will tighten, and the space for free speech will shrink. In this context, Internet censorship will undoubtedly be strengthened, and the possibility of the Chinese government shutting down the microblogging services will always be with us.

Perpetrators and their collaborators should be punished. We hereby urge investors to reduce their shareholding in Sina based on both moral and rational judgments, thereby indirectly applying pressure to Sina and its microblogging service to get them onto censorship practices based on clear and transparent principles.

 

Written by: Beifeng
November 2011

All Your Facts Are Belong to Us


Railway ministry spokesman Wang Yongping. "Whether or not you believe it; either way, I believe it."

In China, news has a habit of disappearing; from state media, traditional media, personal blogs, microblogs, and Internet forums alike. After an important incident, citizens have roughly a day to opine before the government apparatus catches up. It is then that directives are issued to media outlets, outlining what can and cannot be reported; it is then that posts you swore you wrote vanish; it is then that new “sensitive keywords” are entered into a blackout database.

But this sort of state-induced amnesia doesn’t mean the incidents are forgotten or disappear from public consciousness. For the discerning public, these events are preserved in other ways. Usually it’s though whispered anecdotes that blend fact and rumor. Sometimes it’s through a kind of numeric shorthand: May 4 (5.4), June 4 (6.4), and, more recently, May 12 (5.12, referring to the 2008 Sichuan Earthquake). But with the spread of Internet and cell phone connectivity comes another form of public remembrance which we will focus on here: the catchphrase turned Internet meme.

Last week, railway ministry spokesman Wang Yongping became the most quoted person in China after a press conference on the evening of July 24, just one day after the Wenzhou train collision, in which he uttered two phrases that might be repeated for years to come.

“This is a miracle.”

Here’s the setup. After authorities had claimed that there were no more survivors on the derailed train cars, they began to push them around with cranes in preparation to bury them, causing rumors to fly that there were still survivors and that the government was intent on literally burying the evidence.

That assertion, turns out, is at least partly true. 21 hours after the collision, rescue workers found two-year-old Xiang Weiyi (nicknamed Yiyi) alive inside one of the cars. This turn of events led to a widespread conviction that the government had not taken the rescue effort seriously.

At the Ministry of Railways press conference, Wang was in the unenviable position of having to account for why someone would be found alive when the government had declared everyone dead and had begun to tear the train cars apart. But it’s okay, this guy is a professional. Just say you’re sorry, you messed up, stand up and bow, offer condolences, throw in some empty platitudes if you have the time, and you’ll be home in time for dinner. No sweat.

http://player.youku.com/player.php/sid/XMjg4MTk4OTUy/v.swf

Unless…

Reporter: Why would a girl be found alive while disassembling the train cars, when rescue attempts were already finished?

Wang: This is a miracle. You ask why—

Reporter: This is not a miracle!

[Many reporters angrily yelling at once.]

Reporter: What I want to ask is this: Why, after you had already announced that there were no survivors, when you had already begun to disassemble to the train? Why would there still be a survior?

Wang: I am answering you. This happened. We truly did find a girl who was alive. This is the way things are.

Two-year-old Xiang Weiyi recovering from her injuries.

Now, I don’t want to be too hard on Wang. After all he is just a government lackey, but ARE YOU SERIOUS? A miracle? Someone call the pope, I think a sainthood is in order! Is it also a miracle that this girl has symptoms of PTSD? Or is that just what happens when you leave a two-year-old to die in a train car?

Unsurprisingly, this quote spread across the Chinese Internet and added fuel to the argument that the Chinese government, to paraphrase Kanye West, doesn’t care about Chinese people. Certainly, the insouciance with which Wang answers the question is disturbing. The lack of depth and self-reflection in his response belies a disregard for the girl’s life, which could easily be generalized to the Party itself.

In the end, I think I understand what Wang is trying to say. For a toddler to survive the train crash in which her parents died is nothing short of Potter-esque; for a defenseless child to survive the full force of the Chinese government’s ineptitude and negligence, is nothing short of miraculous. But if little Yiyi is Harry Potter, then what does that make the government?

“Whether or not you believe it; either way, I believe it.”

http://player.youku.com/player.php/sid/XMjg4MTQwOTA4/v.swf
At another point in the press conference, a reporter asked why the government had attempted to bury parts of the train. Wang’s response was:

Why was the train car buried? Actually, when I got off the plane today, the comrade who picked me up from the airport said that he already saw this kind of news online. I was on the plane so I didn’t have a good handle on things. I wanted to ask him, “Why would there be such a foolish question? Can an event that the whole world knows about really be buried?” He told me, “It’s not being buried. Truthfully, this news cannot be buried.” We have already tried though countless ways to broadcast this information to society.

But about burying [the train car], [the people who picked me up from the airport] gave this explanation. Because the scene of the rescue was very complicated. Below was a quagmire. It was very hard to perform rescue operations. So they buried the head of the car underneath, covered it with dirt, mainly to facilitate rescue efforts. Right now, this is his explanation. Whether or not you believe it; either way, I believe it.

Wang delivers the last line with a satisfied nod of the head and a swing of his right hand (animated GIF here), as if to emphasize the important thing is that he has deluded himself. Whether or not the Chinese people can delude themselves is their problem. An utter lack of curiosity or a desire to know the truth permeates his response. There is no indignation, no second-guessing, no doubt—just gleeful ignorance.

Never mind the lack of logic: It’s hard to perform rescue operations on unstable ground so fuck it, let’s just bury everyone alive. Then, on the backs of the deceased, we can try and rescue some people. Perhaps this is why some netizens have taken to calling Mr. Wang, “Emperor Logic.”

Add to the fact that the Chinese government, like every government, is very successful at burying events that the whole world knows about. One might even say they excel at it. This press conference gives us a rare glimpse into why the Chinese government works so well: they’ve stacked their ranks with people who have cheerfully drunk the Kool-Aid. I had hoped that officials in the government didn’t believe their own bullshit but Wang here wallows in it. You’ve gotta give him points for gullibility.

The Social Consciousness

Jokes incorporating Wang’s responses quickly surfaced. A comment on the latter video reads, “Wang Yongping is impotent. Whether or not you believe it; either way, I believe it.”

A longer joke imagines a retelling of Journey to the West:

Tangzeng and his followers have to go back to West Heaven and Tangzeng wants to take a shortcut so he asks Wukong’s advice. Wukong says, “I hear planes are much faster than your white horse.” Bajie advises, “Master, I hear the Shenzhou 6 is even faster.” Then, Shazeng pulls out four tickets for a high-speed train and says to Tangzeng: “Master, I hear this thing can send you straight to West Heaven. Whether or not you believe it; either way, I believe it.”

Aside from finding humor in an otherwise depressing situation, memes like this are important because they embed the event in the social consciousness, preserving knowledge about the event for a longer period of time. After all, a government’s greatest ally is the forgetfulness of the general public.

These cultural memes show that although the government is monitoring the Internet more and more carefully—blocking websites, deleting posts and reposts—they cannot stop their infamies from seeping into the culture itself. Perhaps the only way citizens can remind themselves of the tragedies that are whitewashed, rewritten, or otherwise brushed aside, is to make them a part of the underground lexicon.

Shortly after the accident, a user on Tencent’s microblogging service started a “High-speed Rail Style Sentence Making Competition,” which challenged users to make sentences using Wang’s, “Regarding ___, whether or not you believe it; either way, I believe it.” Though I cannot locate the thread (it may have been harmonized), the competition had over 7,000 replies by the evening of the 27th.

Some entries were preserved on other parts of the web:

The Chinese Soccer Association said: “The Chinese soccer team will qualify for the 2014 World Cup. Whether or not you believe it; either way, I believe it.”

There is no traffic in Beijing today. This is a miracle, but that is how it happened. Whether or not you believe it; either way, I believe it.

“River crab,” Baidu’s 10 Mythical Creatures, “harmonize,” are all part of the underground lexicon that undermine the government’s official line. Wang follows in a long line of people who were unfortunate enough to coin a phrase that perfectly embodies the iniquities of their society. Former champions include Ted Stevens with his conception of the Internet as “a series of tubes” and Li Qiming who notoriously announced to the world, “My dad is Li Gang.”

The Li Gang case is especially salient because the catchphrase ensured the enduring popularity of the incident and kept it in the public consciousness until, finally, the government was forced to act. (That case also spawned a writing competition in which netizens were tasked to rewrite classical poems by incorporating the phrase, “My dad is Li Gang.”)

Although Wang’s memes have staying power—they are beautiful in their simplicity, as the best memes are—the issue they deal with is too sensitive and the Chinese government will not act on something that strikes at the heart of their legitimacy just because a few netizens are cracking jokes behind their back. But these seemingly innocuous jokes hurt the credibility of the Ministry of Railways if not the central government and could serve to pressure more officials to step down in the future.

It’s a long shot but whether or not you believe it; either way, I believe it.

In the Internet Age, Will We Still Read?

This essay was written by Yang Hengjun. We’ve translated a portion of it here outlining his opposition to the internet’s alleged role in reducing China’s appetite for real reading.

Translation

The internet has changed everyone’s reading habits. Or, you might say, the internet as a medium has replaced traditional reading. I would like to congratulate those who have put down traditional paper-and-binding books and started to use computers (and cell phones) for reading purposes. Compared to the number of books we can buy on the mainland, the number of books we can download on the internet is virtually limitless.

But I would like to address a different set of netizens. They’ve put down regular books (or they never picked them up in the first place) and got online, but they’re not reading; at least they aren’t reading in the traditional sense of the term. They use forums, look at blogs, then go ahead and send something out on Twitter. The result is that a few hours of each day are passed in this way.

While interacting with some netizens, I feel that quite a large group of them are this type of “reader.” This group has been lured by the various wonders the internet holds, and entered into a sea of brand-new information and knowledge. Thus they feel that traditional reading is out of date and can’t keep up with modernity.

In my opinion, this is an enormous mistake, even a negative side-effect of the internet itself. The number of people in our country that like to read has been small all along, and now that we have the internet, a portion of our readers are getting online. I don’t want to claim that reading and internet use are opposites: nothing can replace the internet for those that want to read news and gain better understanding of all types of information and new types of knowledge. Yet for young people that are absorbing knowledge, there is really nothing that can replace reading – what I mean is reading actual books, not just aimlessly glancing over materials online.

Nowadays, the development of the internet’s “anything goes” nature, I’ve gradually come to feel that many of the young netizens I come cross are of the “onion-shaped” variety. On the outside they’re great, but inside they’re empty. They seem to be omniscient about everything going on in the world, and they have quite novel viewpoints. But if you talk with them just a bit you’ll discover they’re completely empty on the inside, and nothing can pull them from the viewpoints they found online. Naturally, this type of young person’s most important quality is impulsiveness. They think that typing a search into Baidu and playing around online means they can go anywhere.

Discussion

Not surprisingly, Yang Hengjun is not the only person out there talking about the supposed evils of the internet. In 2008, Nicholas G. Carr published an article in The Atlantic with a similar theme. Carr’s thesis is essentially that the way we read on the internet is negatively affecting how we read other media as well. That is to say that the quick skimming we tend to do online (like you’re probably doing right now!) impairs our ability to understand Tolstoy novels and other deep, ponderous pieces of literature.

These concerns are as old as the internet itself, but China is relatively late in developing widespread internet access. While now a generation of young adults now graduating high school in America may have had internet access in their homes as long as they’ve been able to read, this is not likely to be the case in China. Should Yang’s warning be heeded by educated Chinese attempting to raise children to keep in contact with the (physical) written word, or are Yang and Carr just neo-Luddites? Should parents have their children dive with abandon into the electronic world so as not to hinder their functioning in society?

In a society like China’s, the written word has had particular importance. Its traditional place in society is immense. If China fully embraces a fundamentally new type of written word, what will become of the traditional respect given to masters of the old script? The equalizing, democratizing nature of the internet makes me think that there can be no equivalent to the traditional scholar on the internet. Whether this is a good or bad thing isn’t as clear.

“Wen Jiabao’s Chat Shows Domestic Situation is Grim”

The NPC (National People’s Congress) kicks off again this year, and in preparation for that day, Premier Wen Jiabao went to the internet to answer questions from users. This has sparked a lot of discussion on the Chinese blogosphere, the following is a translation of blogger Han Song’s thoughts following the chat. It’s not a particularly well organized piece, but there is some interesting stuff in there.

Translation

[Note: Han Song typically posts giant blocks of text, and doesn’t differentiate paragraphs, but I’ve tried to make some paragraph divisions here where they seemed appropriate, for the sake of reading ease.]

Chinese Premier: Grandpa Wen
This time, Premier Wen’s chat with netizens left a deep impression. Twice, he said, “I don’t have much time” (and what finally came up on Xinhua’s website was “I don’t have many opportunities”). He responded to over twenty questions, and whether they were ones he selected himself or ones selected by the moderator, they were almost all questions on domestic issues. You could say it was just a string [of domestic issues] and there was no real discussion of hot international topics (the only things he mentioned related to other countries were Sino-American trade and the Shanghai Expo; he didn’t discuss anything else, from carbon emissions to Iran, North Korea, Afghanistan, etc., let alone the recent Google hacking incident).

I feel this reflects that the domestic situation is already rather grim. For example, there’s the issue of housing prices; how many years has it been since he made promises [to resolve the issue]? Or another example, [the issue of] access to the education system; it’s been ten-plus years and the issue still isn’t resolved. Then there’s the medical system; farmers, half of whom are still at the mercy of the seasons for food; commodity prices and corrupt officials that affect social stability, the [uneven] distribution of wealth, etc. China has to solve so many domestic issues, and “there aren’t many opportunities”, so there’s probably no way of dealing with international issues. It definitely also hints that China still is not a real international or global nation.

Many countries feel China is incompatible [with the rest of the world] and that it lacks justice, and they are concerned about this. Foreigners praising China is still rare. Many cadres knowledge of the world is still quite shallow. But in truth, the world’s impact on China has already been massive. But in terms of the meeting that’s about to happen [i.e., the meeting of the NPC], most of the representatives discuss international issues infrequently, not like American legislators, who have been gossiping about other countries for years.

Additionally, on the education issue and the issues of the next generation, the Premier spoke at some length, showing his concerns about the future. Speaking on studying, [he] criticized that Chinese people already have stopped studying hard. He wants more people to look to the sky, it seems looking at the ground too much makes people sulky*. Also, since while in the process of the chat we got the news about the 8.0 earthquake in Chile, if the moderator had directed Wen to express his feelings on this that would be good.

<span title="总理在网谈结束后又来到新华社视察。印象最深的是总理站得非常直,始终挺胸抬头。他希望新华社做世界一流的通讯社,这个一流,是第一的意思。这么一个十三亿人口国家,五千年文明大国,应该这样。大家都受到感动的样子,不停地鼓掌、笑、拍照。 "After the chat was over, the Premier came again to inspect Xinhua News Agency. The greatest impression he left [on me] was that he stood very straight, his head was always up and his shoulders were square. He hopes Xinhua can be an international first-class news agency; this "first-class" is his top priority. In a nation with 1.3 million people and five thousand years of grand history, that is as it should be. Everyone [at Xinhua] looked as though they were very moved, clapping, smiling, and taking pictures.

*Note: I think what Wen meant by “look to the sky” is something like “reach for the stars” but Han Song may be employing a bit of double entendre here, too; taking “sky” to refer to the future and “ground” to refer to reality, i.e. China’s present situation.

The Fifty Cents Party Training Manual

This post has been making the rounds on the intertubes, the version we’re translating comes from Anti-CNN. It’s a satirical guide for prospective Fifty Cents Party members on the many methods they can use to respond to criticism:

fifty cents

Translation

Comment: This chicken egg tastes disgusting.
Response: The duck egg next door is even worse tasting, how could you not mention this?

Comment: This chicken egg tastes disgusting.
Response: Please make a constructive comment, if you’ve got talent then lay a better tasting egg yourself.

Comment: This chicken egg tastes disgusting.
Response: This egg was laid by an industrious, courageous, good, kind, honest, and upright chicken!

Comment: This chicken egg tastes disgusting.
Response: It’s way better than last year’s egg.

Comment: This chicken egg tastes disgusting.
Response: You grew up [by] eating this egg, what right do you have to say it tastes bad?

Comment: This chicken egg tastes disgusting.
Response: What intentions are you harboring to make you say this?

Comment: This chicken egg tastes disgusting.
Response: You criticize the eggs that come from your own chicken, are you or are you not Chinese?

Comment: This chicken egg tastes disgusting.
Response: Fuck, I suspect you are a “wheel” [liar, or probably more likely FLG member?].

Comment: This chicken egg tastes disgusting.
Response: Just complaining is useless, if you have extra time you’d be better off working hard to earn money.

Comment: This chicken egg tastes disgusting.
Response: Taiwanese netizen, fuck off, we don’t welcome you here.

Comment: This chicken egg tastes disgusting.
Response: Aw, Youyou’s mentality is so gloomy, even has to grouse about bad-tasing eggs!

Comment: This chicken egg tastes disgusting.
Response: The egg is bad because the hen who laid this egg was incited by some [bad] hens who can’t lay eggs.

Comment: This chicken egg tastes disgusting.
Response: This comment has already been screened by the moderator.

Comment: This chicken egg tastes disgusting.
Response: So China’s eggs all taste bad, and America’s eggs all taste good? Traitor!

Comment: This chicken egg tastes disgusting.
Response: Taiwan’s eggs are good, go there why don’t you, see if you don’t get leveled by a nuclear bomb*

Comment: This chicken egg tastes disgusting.
Response: China’s eggs can already defeat America’s eggs, be proud!

Comment: This chicken egg tastes disgusting.
Response: I won’t avoid eggs from the motherland no matter how bad they are!

Comment: This chicken egg tastes disgusting.
Response: You dare to say the eggs from our chicken farm taste bad? What position are you speaking from?

Comment: This chicken egg tastes disgusting.
Response: Carrying a bowl to eat eggs, then putting down the chopsticks to curse, you don’t know what’s good for you, ungrateful, shameless and brazen!

Comment: This chicken egg tastes disgusting.
Response: Bad tasting eggs are a tiny minority, the majority of eggs are good, excellent, and stand up to testing!

Comment: This chicken egg tastes disgusting.
Response: This is a small group of criminals deceiving the unaware-of-the-truth masses!

Comment: This chicken egg tastes disgusting.
Response: This is having an ulterior motive and inciting [others], what are you trying to do?

Comment: This chicken egg tastes disgusting.
Response: That is a rumor, I can responsibly say that all eggs are up to quality standards!

Comment: This chicken egg tastes disgusting.
Response: There is no basis to this, I hope the media can report objectively!

Comment: This chicken egg tastes disgusting.
Response: I think some people’s eggs aren’t that great, our eggs are five times better!

Comment: This chicken egg tastes disgusting.
Response: The correct orientation is the happiness of our chicken farm, the erroneous orientation is the misfortune of our chicken farm.

Comment: This chicken egg tastes disgusting.
Response: Our chicken farm is still in the early stages, we must persist [on this course] for the next twenty years without wavering!

Comment: This chicken egg tastes disgusting.
Response: We want to found a chicken farm with our own special characteristics, and have our hens lay eggs with their own special characteristics.

Comment: This chicken egg tastes disgusting.
Response: Although the taste is a bit worse, it has benefits for our health, if you import an American egg without authorization, your digestive system and stomach, perhaps even your entire endocrine system, will collapse. –Leftist Scholar of Reason

Comment: This chicken egg tastes disgusting.
Response: The chicken egg tasting bad is not related to the earthquake. –Earthquake expert

Comment: This chicken egg tastes disgusting.
Response: There are hostile foreign powers gossiping about our eggs without authorization —Liu Jianchao

Comment: This chicken egg tastes disgusting.
Response: Chinese chickens, come on! –Patriotic youth

Comment: This chicken egg tastes disgusting.
Response: Because of the Beijing customer willfully stirring up trouble and saying the egg is bad, we have gone to the capital twice to mediate, without result. –Shanghai police

Comment: This chicken egg tastes disgusting.
Response: This is a recent rumor started by people on the internet.

Comment: This chicken egg tastes disgusting.
Response: You are part of the small minority who is unaware of the truth, how could the egg taste bad?

Comment: This chicken egg tastes disgusting.
Response: The nation is prosperous and the people are strong, why aren’t you just eating chicken meat?

Comment: This chicken egg tastes disgusting.
Response: No egg is perfect, so you have no right to gossip about this egg!

Comment: This chicken egg tastes disgusting.
Response: Whether eggs from the Qing dynasty tasted good or not, only people from the Qing dynasty know.

Comment: This chicken egg tastes disgusting.
Response: Think of the old society, poor people didn’t even have rice to eat, every day eating chaff and wild herbs, today’s happy life was paid for with the lives and blood of countless martyrs, you must treasure it!

Comment: This chicken egg tastes disgusting.
Response: This is the first stage of chickens laying eggs, if you want to eat good eggs you must wait until the higher stage, this early stage is a very long process.

*Not sure how to translate the last part of this sentence, “看不核平了你”. And of course, the real harmonious comment would be that the egg tastes yakexi!

“War of Internet Addiction”: A Must-See Movie

I apologize for stepping on Max R.’s most recent translation, which is here and which everyone should read.

But I would be remiss if I didn’t point you in the direction of this post on Youku Buzz, and this machinima film, called War of Internet Addiction. That link goes to Youku, but viewers outside China can also view it (with English subtitles!) on Youtube here (note that there are 7 parts, that is the link to part 1).

The entire thing is amazingly well done. It is at times hilarious, at times moving, and always quite well made given the resouces the “filmmakers” were working with.

Kaiser has already said everything I would say better, so go over to Youku buzz for the full scoop, but even if you aren’t going to watch the whole thing, you really should watch the climactic speech:

(Skip to around 1:40, watch it until the end)

Granted, I am a sucker for dramatic speeches set to awesome orchestral music, but even I find this moving, and I am neither Chinese nor a WoW player. I do wonder how much longer this could possibly last without being blocked, though…