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Monthly Archives: January 2008

Lost in translation: a one-edged double-edged sword

A few weeks ago Xinhua’s Chinese-language website ran an article with the headline “US NEWSPAPER: THE OLYMPICS - A MOMENT THAT MAKES CHINA PROUD.” It’s essentially a translation of another article in the Christian Science Monitor from a few days earlier: “THE OLYMPICS IN CHINA: A MOMENT FOR PRIDE - AND WORLD SCRUTINY.” When one […]

Nini the mutant mascot

For two years, Beijing Olympic organizers have been telling us that Nini the Fuwa is a swallow:
Every spring and summer, the children of Beijing have flown beautiful kites on the currents of wind that blow through the capital. Among the kite designs, the golden-winged swallow is traditionally one of the most popular. Nini’s figure […]

When Hu Jia wasn’t an ‘enemy of the state’

The article translated below was published in the summer of 2001 in the Freezing Point supplement of the China Youth Daily. Not long after that, Hu Jia met Zeng Jinyan. Now he’s under arrest, accused of incitement to subvert state power, but there was a time when Hu Jia wasn’t seen as a threat. […]

Prisoners in Freedom City

I’ve been wondering when someone would post Prisoners in Freedom City on Youtube. Now someone finally has. It’s Hu Jia and Zeng Jinyan’s documentary, filmed in 2006, about his house arrest and her being constantly tailed. They turned the tables on the state, filming the very people who were watching over them.
Here’s Part 1. […]

Zeng Jinyan on Channel 4

Zeng Jinyan with her two-month-old baby, under house arrest in Freedom City, managed to make a brief appearance on Britain’s Channel 4 News. Video here.

John Kennedy’s translation at Global Voices of early Chinese blog reactions to Hu Jia’s arrest has now been blocked in China, but still available via proxy. So I may as […]

You will exploooode!

I don’t watch much TV news. You can Fox it up as much as you like with waving flags, crashing sound effects and wizbang graphics splattering the screen. Or you can dress it up as something very, very serious. It’s still just TV news - about as nutritious as a microwaved dinner. It’s not always […]

‘Be objective, don’t sensationalize’

The BBC’s website has a piece by Michael Bristow about the pop-up notices that appear on our computer screens at CCTV. It’s pretty accurate and gives three true examples. But “pretty accurate” can still be misleading. The problem part of the article is the first two sentences:
When journalists at China’s national broadcaster CCTV log on, […]