Archive for March, 2007

An Idiot’s Guide to watching movies online in China

March 29, 2007

A few weeks ago 三联生活周刊 ran this story which details the state of the online video sharing and movie download industry in China. The article outlines how racy content and pirated movies can be found everywhere and most website are giving up trying to make their users pay for content.
While Beijing has been cracking down on pirated DVD’s sold on the street, little has been done to stop the explosive growth of pirated video sharing via bittorrent or video sharing websites. Software like Xunlei, a a bittorrent download manager, has over 100 million users, clouding the future for copyright protection in China.

Translated from Chinese, original can be found here, for more information look to Danwei’s post on this subject: Internet video in China: who are the players?. Another comparison of Chinese video sites can be found here on China Web2.0 Review.

Idiot’s Guide to watching movies online in China

By Zou Jianyu, Zhuanji, and Lie Yin

“How do you actually watch movies on the internet?” The person in charge for copyright protection at a website answered: “go to a Peer To Peer (P2P) webpage and look! 90% of all websites have them”

2006 was the year of frenzied investment in internet movie downloading and online viewing, it is said that within one year more than 200 new online movie websites were established. The equivalent of over 200 movie theaters being built without geographic restrictions, able to provide content over the internet at any time.

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“Princeling” Boxilai rumored to be heading to Guangdong

March 28, 2007

According to Boxun.com, Bo Xilai who is the son of Bo Yibo, former Liaoning Party Boss, and now current Minister of Commerce, he is going to take over the reigns in Guangdong Province and serve as the Provincial Party Secretary. This would give him a highly coveted seat on the Politburo.

This goes against most speculation that says Beijing City Official Wang Qishan would be taking this post.

If this turns out to be true, it would be the second newly appointed high official that does not have a Communist Youth Party background, signaling that while Hu Jintao’s power is growing, he does not yet have the support to put his people in high-places or fill important seats on the Politburo. While Hu has been working to weed out the influence of Jiang’s Shanghai Gang, there has been strong resistance and “princelings” Xi Jinping and Boxilai could been seen as compromises. Another factor impeding Hu’s power is that most of his Communist Youth Party cadres are from the poorer interior provinces, and thus lack the kind of skills needed to manage the dynamic, international based economies of the coastal provinces.

Of course, Hu Jintao still has a number of opportunities to put his own people in, as many on the Politburo are near the mandated retirement age or are sick and out of capacity (Huangju).

薄熙来接替张德江 任广东省委书记
(博讯2007年3月28日 来稿 – 支持此文作者/记者)
中共十七大召开前夕,人事变动再次受到关注,继上海后,广东省省委书记一职也备受关注。外电传出有北京党内人士透露,张德江将调上中央,而前中共已故元老 薄一波儿子,国家商务部部长薄熙来将接替张德江,任广东省委书记一职。这意味着薄熙来将进入中共领导核心的政治局,可能是第五代领导人的重要人选。

And for kicks this is hot off the rumor mill at Observe China.

17大常委七人名单

中国信息中心 北京小道消息称,两会之前确定的17大常委七人名单如下:胡锦涛、吴邦国、温家宝、曾庆红、刘延东、周永康、李克强。这个名单主要是胡锦涛与江泽民商议,在确定留下的四常委之后,江泽民同意刘延东,提名周永康,剩下一名由胡定,胡最后确定李克强。

常委7人名单只是暂时的平衡物,中共的事情,不到最后一步,都存在极大的变数,就像16大,临开会了还没决定常委是7人还是9人,最后的记者会上,江泽民才决定出台9个人。17大权力平衡到最后,不是没有保持9人的可能。

Paulson seems to be playing his cards right

March 24, 2007

Last year US Treasury Secretary Paulson during his September trip to China, made a rare first stop in Zhejiang to meet with then Party Secretary Xi Jinping because he regarded him as a rising star among the communist party. It seems he was dead on.

Today China’s state media officially announced that Xi Jinping will take over from interm Shanghai Party Secretary Hanzheng and will now be the perminent secretary of China’s largest and most important economic center. He also gets a seat on the politburo. Last year former Shanghai Party Boss Chen Liangyu and protege of Jiang Zemin was ousted for corruption charges in a scandal that gripped the country.

It will be interesting to see what this will do for Paulson and his long term China goals. It’s also questionable if his goals can even be long term, after the 08′ presidential elections his own political future is in question as well.

Links:

原浙江省委书记习近平接任上海市委书记 Singtao.net

习近平调任上海市委书记 BBC Chinese

Xi Jinping’s biography on China Vitae

Paulson makes “important trip” to china for trade IHT

Media coverage emboldens nailhouse owners

March 22, 2007

It seems in light of all the media coverage of the holdout or nailhouse in Chongqing, the owners have taken drastic measures and plan to stake it out in their house even though local courts have ruled that they must leave the premises by the 23rd. The couple who own the house are demanding that they be given comparable square footage in the new building, but the developer will only agree upon a small monetary compensation. The husband of Mrs. Wuping, whose media interview I just translated, has stationed himself on the island and has stated: “If anyone dares to come up I’ll beat them back down!” The 54 year old Yang Wuping also happens to be a martial arts champion. This was after Mrs. Wuping herself said you need to be patient and “can’t go around speaking carelessly.”

In addition Nanfang Metropolis Weekly ran an editorial saying that the nailhouse in Chongqing could be the first real test of China’s new property law. Link
“大批媒体前往重庆采访。这个新闻的背景是,起草数年、几经争议的《物权法》刚刚在全国人代会上通过,记者们显然为这个新鲜的法律找到了一个生动的案例。这个案例真的能够担当起这个重任吗?”

And according to a recent interview with the head of the Jiulong Hills District courts:  “if they don’t move out automatically they will be forced to evict.” Link

Google and Baidu news are also pulling up hundreds of mainland media outlets that are covering the story.

UPDATE

Things aren’t looking so good for the nailhouse owner, even though the property law is on the books it isn’t effective until October according to a People’s University professor, so they just need to find the will to stick it out for a few more months. Link
“对此,中国人民大学法学院副教授朱岩表示,《物权法》第42条规定,为了公共利益的需要,依照法律规定可以征收集体所有的土地和单位、个人的房屋及其他不动产。而开发商建商业用房,一般来说不属公共利益范畴,所以,若《物权法》生效,该”钉子户”应可胜诉。
但是,《物权法》虽然刚刚获得通过,但要到今年10月1日,才能正式实施。这个”钉子户”要”顶”到10月,才能成为成功利用《物权法》维权的个案,否则,只能成为《物权法》实施前的最后一个牺牲品”。

Interview with China’s most incredible holdout

March 22, 2007

This is a follow up on my previous posts with regards to “China’s most incredible holdout”, where a housing dispute led to the developer digging a moat around someone’s house who refused to move. This post is the translation of an interview with the owner of this “nailhouse” on an island, 40 year old Mrs. Wuping.

According to the interview, all Mrs. Wuping wanted was a space of comparable footage in the new building but the developer just wanted to give her a small sum of money. The local press was also forbidden to report on the story and the developer worked with the local government and courts to coerce Mrs. Wuping.

In this long interview you get an inside look into the local politics of relocation and the kind of difficulties people face if they chose to fight the developer.

You can also watch a CCTV legal society TV program which includes interviews with the developer and Mrs. Wuping and a number of Chongqing residents. Link to video HERE.

Translated from Chinese, original can be found here.
Another interview from a Beijing newpaper 新京报 here

Mrs. WupingOn March 21st China.net reported that “China’s Most Incredible Holdout” which caused a huge stir on the Internet will soon disappear. Yesterday Chongqing Jiulong Hill District court held a hearing and ruled that the owner of the property (the holdout) has until the 22nd to tear down the building. Chongqing Court decides “Histories most incredible holdout” must relocate in three days became one of today’s hot topics on web forums throughout china. The following is the transcript of a telephone interview with the household’s owner, Mrs. Wuping

Facing the notification: I don’t have the power to appeal

Host: We saw the Chongqing courts decision on the Internet, can you explain to us in simple terms what the situation is?

Wuping: Among the residents moving, I am the largest private property owner, furthermore you can basically say I am the only one who has complete papers, such as a property rights land right certificates, they both clearly indicated that it is a building zoned for business. At that time I had just finished renovations, and they (the developer) said they had to tear everything down and people had to be relocated, as a result this was really damaging for us. According to my property right certificate, I am clearly in ownership of 219 square meters, so for this use it should be returned to me.

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pictures from the recent CCP summit

March 20, 2007

Here are some People’s Hall service people taking pictures at Hu Jintao’s and other high-level CCP officials seats. I wonder how this would go over with their superiors?

Born in the 80’s: A Chinese Sex Documentary

March 16, 2007

This is a fairly open and controversial documentary about Sex and the generation of Chinese who were born in the 1980’s. Titled 冰度80年代荷尔蒙 in Chinese. Everything is discussed from their first time, threesomes, whatever you name it is on here. Even though this is on YouTube, its actually on most of the Chinese video sharing sites, and has hundreds and thousands of comments. Sorry, its only in Chinese and there are no English subtitles. But if you understand Chinese its worth checking out.  This is a preview but if you follow the links on YouTube you can watch the whole movie.

Chinese engineering at its might

March 15, 2007

Anyone read the news stories how China is going to indigenously develop a large scale airplane within the next 10 years? Here are the first prototype shots. Sorry I couldn’t help myself on this one. I love how a missing wheel has been propped up with a helmet.

Caption reads “Genius! Chinese farmer prepares to test flight his self designed helicopter”
太有才了!中国农民自制直升飞机准备试飞

Store-owner, in search for justice posts wanted posters of student-thief

March 14, 2007

This is what happens when you lose trust in the police. Notice how the article mentions no involvement of the authorities to solve this matter. Although even in a western country they would not be able to do much.

Story (in Chinese) can be read here on Sohu.

Young Girl Caught Stealing Cosmetic Products Videotaped, Store Owner Posts Wanted Posters All Over the City

 


photo from China.com

A long haired girl with student appearance on Normal University Street stole cosmetic products from a store and was unexpectedly videotaped. In order to make the thief turn themselves in, yesterday the store-owner on Student Street, Fujian Normal University and a few other close-by university campus’ posted huge wanted posters. “Thief Accusation Notice” was written angrily on the cover. The store owner hopes that when the girl who stole the products see’s this she will admit her mistakes and return everything, or else he will make 500 copies of the unblurred pictures and make them known to the public.

Yesterday the reporter went to the store in which the products were stolen from. The store-owner presented the security video tape which depicts the entire process of the girl’s theft.

The time of the recording was 3/11/07 10:49 am, a long-haired girl wearing glasses, a blue windbreaker, and carrying a white shoulder bag walked around the store once and then stopped in front of a counter. The saleswoman thus came forward and started to introduce the products. When the saleswomen left, the girl put a bottle of sunblock back onto the counter and then took another bottle, after glancing around a few times she opened up her jacket and put the suntan lotion inside, once completed she then took another bottle and held it in her hands. When the saleswoman walked back, the girl put the bottle in her hands back on the counter. With two bottles pressed up under her armpits, the girl walked around a few times and calmly left the store.

The same afternoon a storeworker realized they were missing a bottle of sun-tan lotion, after double checking the sales records the storeowner was notified. The storeowned then immediately checked the security tapes of that day and was able to find out what actually happened.

The salesperson from the store said the girl was gentle and quiet, looked as if she was a university student, if they didn’t see the tapes, you wouldn’t suspect she was a thief at all.

If she doesn’t turn herself in, he will publish photo’s depicting her identity.

After watching the video tape, the store-owner immediately wrote the “Thief Accusation Notice” with video-stills from the tape pasted on front depicting the entire stealing process. Yesterday afternoon, the store-owner made seven 60cm x 100cm color copies and then pasted them at the store entrance, student street intersection, normal university and a few other nearby schools caught the eye’s of many, who stopped to read the posters as they walked by.

The store owner taking into consideration the girls future and reputation, also blurred out the face of the girl. The store-owner also said that he hopes the girl will quickly contact him, or else on the 1st of next month he will paste 500 copies of her real picture, clearly depicting her identity at the Cang Mountain campus and other public places.

According to sources, up until 10pm last night, the girl still hadn’t gotten into contact with the storeowner.

Holdout part III

March 14, 2007

So I guess this story was picked up by the Daily Mirror in the UK. Does anyone have a link to the story?

Article in the Pakistan Paper “Daily Times” link Here

Article in the British paper “Metro” link here

Also, there is alot of discussion here on digg.com

More translation to come in the next few days. Stay tuned.