The two biggies, Blogspot and Wordpress, have apparently been blocked here for a while. Oddly, though, the Keepers of the Great Firewall didn’t catch on to Tumblr. Then, about an hour after reading this story, I found I could no longer access other Tumblr feeds either. (For some reason, though, I could — and still can, obviously — log into my own account. Strange.)
Of course, the iron fists are only prolonging the inevitable; stopgap approaches never work in the long run. Just ask the music industry.
A posting on Sina Weibo, China’s version of Twitter, regarding luxury-car brand images in China. From this interesting piece in the Times.
I also considered using this excerpt — “The Buick, long associated in the United States with drivers who have a soft spot for the early-bird special, is by contrast one of the hottest luxury cars in China” — because it was one of the first amusing Little Differences I noticed when I arrived.
(A hand-me-down 1985 white Buick Park Avenue was my first car. Total chick-magnet.)
I learned about this last night at pub trivia.
In related news, Confucius just rolled over in Kong Lin.
The leaders’ approach to building a world-class culture is not all that different from the one that powered China’s economic miracle: set a long-term goal, adopt rigid specifications, pour in copious amounts of public money, monitor closely to ensure the desired result.
In this case, as the report repeatedly stated, the specifications are to adhere to “core socialist values” in cultural activities. The desired result is “to build our country into a socialist culture superpower.”
Spasms of social turmoil in China have become increasingly common, a reflection of the widening income gap and deepening unhappiness with official corruption and an unresponsive legal system.
Throw in last week’s huge protest in Moscow, and you’ve got to think — or hope, at least — that the big boys in Beijing are shitting themselves just a little.
Detained after she tried to photograph demolition crews, she said she was kicked and pummeled over the course of 15 hours, leaving her incontinent and unable to walk. She was released after 75 days but continued her legal work while also seeking redress for the beating. Over the next few years, she was arrested twice more and convicted of “obstructing public business.”
During her three years in prison, she said, she endured frequent indignities: An officer once urinated on her face, she said, and prison officials often took away her crutches, forcing her to crawl from her cell to the prison workshop.
“This is an amazing idea, to be able to choose the people who represent you,” said the man, who asked to remain nameless so he could speak without restraint. “I think democracy will come to China. It’s only a matter of time.”
Cool little web video from The Times.
(And incidentally, I just learned that it’s not “Gung hey fat choy,” not in Mandarin, anyway. That’s Cantonese. Strange that that’s the version they taught us in elementary school, given that most Asian-Americans’ families don’t come from Hong Kong or Guangdong.)