China Beat Archive



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April 20, 2010 in The China Beat


Copyright April 20, 2010. Used by permission.


•At his blog, Bruce Humes compares a Newsweek story on the earthquake’s aftermath, “A Sympathetic Hearing,” with its Chinese translation appearing inCankao Xiaoxi (参考消息), finding that quite a bit got edited out and altered. Highlights of the Cankao Xiaoxi version, summarized by Humes:

•Quotes from China social commentator Yang Hengjun are cut to ribbons and then spliced, partly to remove references to anti-Tibetan prejudice among Han, arguably fostered by China’s own media coverage (“It’s very hard to see real Tibetans…on TV, they’re dancing all the time, shaking hands with leaders, celebrating, or shown as troublemakers.”)

•Chinese people don’t “Tweet” (even when they do). They “post.” The logic being that, since [Twitter] is blocked by the government, the media should not call attention to those who scale the Great China Firewall and use Twitter anyway.

•Several references to “Chinese” in English have been translated as “Han.”

•David Peng of An Anachronist’s Life has translated Brice Pedroletti’s interview with Robert Barnett about the Qinghai earthquake into Chinese (we ran the interview in English yesterday; a French version is at Le Monde).