In reality, it is not necessary to real all of these books in detail.  Once you go through the first one in detail, the rest are a breeze.

The fourth week came and I was done with the business-related work.  But I came down with a severe cold that has gone on for more than one week already.

All in all, I did not do much for this website.  For the whole month, there were only four translation blog posts in Section 3, compared to the one per day that I used to aim for.  I expected that the website traffic would drop off significantly for February.  Instead, website traffic soared beyond imagination.
 
In January 2008, here were the summary statistics:
Total number of hits (all files downloaded including .htm, jpg, .gif, etc) = 4,825,948 (=155,571 per day)
Total number of pages (all .htm files downloaded) = 415,425 (=13,391 per day)
Total bandwidth = 122 Gigabytes (=4 Gigabytes per day)
 
In February 2008, here were the summary statistics:
Total number of hits (all files downloaded including .htm, .jpg, .gif, etc) = 26,769,794 (=923,305 per day)
Total number of pages (all .htm files downloaded) = 617,801 (=21,309 per day)
Total bandwidth 661 Gigabytes (=22 Gigabytes per day)

The traffic surge was led by two pages.  The first one is Sex Photos Gate.  Due to the lack of free time, my blogging at the beginning of the month was limited mostly to the story of the Edison Chen photos.  From the first day that the story hit the front pages, I recognized that this was a 'significant' story.  Previously, I had spent a lot of time covering the issues of the Control of Indecent and Obscene Articles Ordinance, the Television and Entertainment Licensing Authority, the Obscene Articles Tribunal and the Hong Kong police over a number of cases.  But somehow all the preceding cases never drew resonance from the population at large.  When the Edison Chen photos came out, this was a "Perfect Storm" because of the tie-in with the tabloid sensationalism about the Rich, the Famous and the Beautiful.  Now all of a sudden, the same issues about privacy, lack of standards for defining indecency/obscenity, selective law enforcement, preferential treatments and so on will now be examined with the full attention of the public.  About ten days after the affair broke into the open, I opened up the page Sex Photos Gate to collect all that had happened before and I continued to update it every day with the latest happenings.  That page did not even the RSS feed until mid-February.  By February 29, that page had amassed 44,687 views.  More significantly, the images on that page were hot-linked by major mainland Chinese portals such as Baidu, Tianya and Xici Hutong to accompany their translations of my page.  Tianya alone had more than 800,000 hits.

But Sex Photos Gate was not even the most popular page of the month.  That honor belongs to an old post first created on May 4, 2005: The Children of Iraq.  This post has a habit of being re-discovered periodically.  In February 2008, it amassed 58,511 page views.  I do not publicize that page.  People find it on their home, and it can be an emotionally compelling experience for some.

More than ten days ago, Lin Libo visited the Edison Chen post-bar at Baidu and clicked on some links that claimed to contain the entire set of sexy photos.  But after this ecstasy subsided, he discovered to his suprise that his computer would jump spontaneously to certain pornographic websites, some unknown programs were being downloaded onto his computer and his high-end computer was performing slower and slower.

Yes, the Edison Chen virus had just broken into Lin's computer.  And this was not the only one.

According to the Beijing-based anti-virus software company spokesperson: "We have discovered hundreds of virus tied in with the Edison Chen sexy photos, and there must be more out there that we have not come across yet."  The Edison Chen viruses usually try to obtain account information and passwords for email, online games and banks and then forward the information to the hackers' mailboxes.  For looking at the Edison Chen photos, you may end up losing all your bank savings.  Or all the game equipment that you amassed for your Great Expedition may be gone in a flash.  Worse yet, your most intimate secrets that you don't want anyone to see may show up all over the Internet, just like the case of Edison Chen.

The computer that you see in front of you may physically belong to you, but somewhere in an invisible corner, someone can see everything inside your computer and they even have full control over your computer.

Your computer has many entry points by which various outside computers send information to you through various channels (e.g. World Wide Web, email, etc).  A hacker had gained access through one of these channels and installed Trojan horses, worms and other programs in your operating system and/or hard disk.  Consequently, he has "taken control"of your computer.  Some of these programs are tiny (as in a dozen kilobytes).  They do not affect the operation of your computer, but they will steal various things from you.

Sohu's IT section webmaster Nick experienced the madness of the Edison Chen virus.  At the peak, Sohu had an innumerable number of outside links.  "In particular, those links that say 'Please download my attachment if you want to the see the complete set of Edison Chen photos' are almost certainly going to be viruses!" When the keyword filtering cannot eliminate these links, the administrators had to delete them by hand.

How do the hackers locate the "meat chickens"?  There are two types: server-based and user-based.

There are several types of server-based approaches.  One type involves the hacker breaking into an official online game website or some game information website and they plant the virus in the web pages.  When a user reaches such a web page, his computer will be automatically infected. 

Apart from online games, the hackers are also interested in banks and e-commerce websites.  If they break into these websites, they can steal the stored data and as well as intercept transactions between the bank and its customers.

The user-based approach uses Trojan horse programs to gain remote control of a personal computer.  Nick speculated: "Edison Chen said that the photos were stolen when he took his computer for maintenance.  In theory, if you arrest the computer repairman, you would know who uploaded the photos onto the Internet.  In practice, a hacker may have broken into that person (or even Edison Chen)'s computer and stole the photos.

By whatever means, a hacker can break into servers and personal computers to gain control and steal information.  Nowadays, a hacker does not release one single virus.  Instead, the hacker releases hundreds of mutations, some designed to steal passwords, some designed to log your keyboard entries, some designed to bypass anti-virus programs and many with multiple functions that can be combined at will.

Apart from constantly updating your anti-virus programs and installing the software patches, the most important thing is to cultivate good Internet practice.  Links with sensitive, tempting words are quite often virus.  Having a good pair of eyes is the way to keep your computer safe and well.

Dear respected judges:

How are you?

Due to carelessness on my part, the wrong photograph was sent to the Golden Camera Lens competition.  This is the seventh photograph of children chasing after a courthouse vehicle in <Why No Homecoming>.  The photograph that I sent had clouds in the sky added by Photoshop.  I did not plan to sent this photograph in.  But it was placed next to the unaltered original and I was careless when I copied it off the compact disk.  I learned from Sina.com that the <Why No Homecoming> won a prize.  After I saw this photograph, I thought that I need to explain to the organizing committee.  Therefore, I immediately explain why happened to the Golden Camera Lens organizating committee workers and I apologize sincerely to the Golden Camera Lens organizing committee.

Wang Yi
February 25, 2008.


The submitted entry with the clouds in the sky


The original photograph

The organizing committee informed the panel of judges that the author asked the committee to rescind the award given to <Why No Homecoming>.  The author explained that the alteration was done by him personally and unrelated to his work unit.

(The Standard)  Chow enters fray over top RTHK job.  By Patsy Moy.  February 26, 2008.

Veteran newsman Robert Chow Yung yesterday publicly declared that he has applied for the director of broadcasting job in answer to what he termed prejudice and discrimination against non-degree holders like himself and six million Hong Kongers.

In an emotional and high-profile announcement, Chow, who is now a businessman and a Radio Television Hong Kong host, named legislators Emily Lau Wai-hing and Cheung Man-kwong as well as RTHK Programme Staff Union chairwoman Janet Mak Lai-ching for discriminating against "many other Hong Kongers who do not have a degree but pledge their earnest efforts to be successful."

He said: "They are discriminating against the six million people in Hong Kong who are not degree holders. Do they [their remarks] mean it is an insult to the organization if the post is headed by someone who does not have a degree? Discrimination and prejudice, which had happened [to me] back in the 1960s and 70s, should not be repeated nowadays."

Chow said he is a role model, showing young people who have been looked down on that "effort makes success."

Chow said: "Hong Kong is a place with opportunities and a hopeful vision for the future, even for young people who don't have high qualifications. There is no requirement for a university degree even for the post of chief executive.

"When they [Lau, Cheung and Mak] said that, they were not pointing at me. I just happened to be one of the millions of Hong Kong people who don't have a degree but, through our efforts, strive to become what we are today. Should we be ashamed of ourselves? Why insult us? Why put a glass ceiling above us?

"If I duck and let it go on, what sort of message will be given to Hong Kong people? We don't take such prejudice and we don't accept such insults."

(Those Were The Days)

What is a public relations disaster?  If Gillian Chung's "very silly, very naÔve" statement at the press conference was a PR disaster, then it is at least understandable because she was only following orders from her company.  Therefore, the mess cannot be blamed totally on her and she is entitled to the benefit of a doubt.  Perhaps she felt differently inside.  But yesterday Robert Chow Yung called an unnecessary press conference and took on all the criticisms that the Legislative Councilors and the RTHK Programme Staff Union chairwoman made of the government personally.  He also escalated the affair into an issue of discrimination against those without academic qualifications.  The attendants were astounded.  After all, who would pick up a stone and drop it on his foot?  Chow Yung claims to have 40 years of experience and he also runs a public relations consultancy.  How would he create an unmitigated public relations disaster for himself and embarrass both himself as well as the government?

Gillian Chung may have been acting under orders, but Chow Yung brought it all upon himself.  In the list of 2008 public relations disasters, Chow Yung takes the lead and Gillian Chung has to take second place.

Ever since the government eliminated university degree from the job requirements, it has been rumored that Chow Yung was the designated candidate for whom the job requirements have been custom-fitted.  No matter whether this is true or not, it is standard in crisis management to maintain a low profile, say little and work behind the scenes.  If the Legislative Councilors and the Union chairman criticized the government, then the government can deal with them.  After all, it was the employer who changed the job requirements and not the applicant -- unless the applicant wants to announce to the world that he is the designated person and that any criticism was an attempt to prevent him from getting this job!

Also, Robert Chow Yun elevated this issue to one of discrimination of persons without academic qualifications.  Previously, a group of Chinese medicine practitioners complained that the government ignored their many years of medical practice and insisted that they register based upon their academic qualifications.  Why didn't Chow Yung support them?  When the government hires Administrative Officers, they have to be university graduates ... Could it be that "discrimination" exists only when Chow Yung is discriminated against, but not otherwise?  ...  When an office hires an assistant, the person is usually required to have a Form Five education.  Is this "discrminatory" against those who never got past Form Five? ...

Chow Yung said that his rich media experience is more than adequate for the job of director of broadcasting.  Based upon his performance today, has he gone off his rockers or is his PR techniques so subtle that nobody else understands it?

There is a conspiracy theory -- the government wants a dysfunctional RTHK in order dismantle it eventually, and therefore they want to hire someone who has no commonsense in public relations crisis management.  The previous director of broadcasting Chu Pui-hing resigned after bungling the public relations crisis management when the press spotted him with the female Coco.

YouTube Link: 周融應徵廣播處長記者會

Q. Which candidate had the better performance?
62%: Ma Ying-jeou
22%: Frank Hsieh

(TVBS) (polls were conducted on February 22 (before) and February 24 (after) the televised debate)

Feb 22: Who is going to perform better?
21%: Ma Ying-jeou
33%: Frank Hsieh

Feb 24: Who performed better in the actual debate?
43%: Ma Ying-jeou
28%: Frank Hsieh
 
Feb 22: If the presidential election were held tomorrow, how would you vote?
53%: Ma-Siew
31%: Hsieh-Su

Feb 24: If the presidential election were held tomorrow, how would you vote?
49%: Ma-Siew
29%: Hsieh-Su

Feb 24: Whose policies meet your needs better?
44%: Ma Ying-jeou
26%: Frank Hsieh

(China Times)

Q. Did you watch the televised debate?
39%: Yes

Q. If yes, then who performed better in the debate?
40%: Ma Ying-jeou
21%: Frank Hsieh

Q. Who do you support for president?
49%: Ma-Siew
23%: Hsieh-Su

Q. Regardless of who you support, which team is more likely to win?
42%: Ma-Siew
  7%: Hsieh-Su

(United Daily News; United Daily News)

Q. Did you watch the televised debate?
45%: Yes (57% among Ma-Siew supporters, 55% among Hsieh-Su supporters and 22% among undecided voters)
 
Q. Who do you think is the better speaker?
47%: Frank Hsieh
30%: Ma Ying-jeou
 
Q. Who has the better ideas in policies?
55%: Ma Ying-jeou
19%: Frank Hsieh
 
Q. Who has the better debating style?
67%: Ma Ying-jeou
  9%: Frank Hsieh
 
Q. Overall, who won this televised debate?
54%: Ma Ying-jeou
21%: Frank Hsieh
11%: A tie between Ma and  Hsieh
13%: Don't know

Q. Which team do you support in the presidential election?
49%: Ma-Siew (down from 56% ten days ago)
21%: Hsieh-Su (up from 18% ten days ago)

Yesterday, the Commercial Crime Bureau detectives made a shocking breakthrought.  Among the computer files of Edison Chen, they found a set of brand new obscene photographs never seen before.  The females were not just the previously known Gillian Chung, Cecilia Cheung, Bobo Chen, Candice Chen, Mandy Chen, Rachel Ngan and Vincy Yeung.  The police now have far more than the previous 1,300 photographs and dozens of female stars are involved.

Yesterday was the third day that the police spoke to Edison Chen, who went to the Wanchai Police Headquarters at 2pm and left at 9pm.

Previously, the people who had already been arrested had a total of 1,300+ photographs plus some previously unreleased video clips.  The video clips depicted sexual intercourse among unidentified persons.

With the explanation from Edison Chen, the police have confirmed that 467 of the already published photographs as well as another batch of photographs not yet released were all excerpted from video clips take by a video camera.  A small number of photographs were taken by a digital camera.  Edison Chen has identified the females in those photographs and video clips.

Edison Chen was very cautious in his statements, as he conferred with his lawyer on every sentence that he said.  This was why progress has been slow.

What did you expect anyway?  There are 467 photographs out there already.  They are either female-only poses, or else they involve foreplay between Edison Chen and some woman or the other.  The photographs show up as a series.  That means that were either taken by a high-speed digital camera set to take rapid photographs, or else they were excerpted from a digital video clip.  Regardless, it is hard to imagine that Edison Chen was only interested in photographic poses or foreplay alone.  There had to be photos depicting full sexual intercourse.

As for why the other photographs or the video clips have not show up yet, there are unsubstantiated speculations (which are useless because they have not been supplemented by even the most meagre of evidence):
(1) the mastermind Kira has achieved his goal of extorting HKD 5 million from the interested parties (Oh, HKD 5 million is too little money in Hong Kong?  How about HKD 7 million?
(2) the mastermind Kira has been located by the triads and exterminated with extreme prejudice
...

It has been 130 days since the Shaanxi Provincial Department of Forestry announced that a wild South China tiger has been discovered (see The South China Tiger Photographs).

It has been 72 days since the State Department of Forestry asked the Shaanxi Provincial Department of Forestry to find an audit agency to authenticate the photographs that Zhou Zhenglong took.

It has been 54 days since the State Department of Forestry announced that this second authentication has achieved a significant breakthrough.

It has been 16 days since the Shaanxi Provincial Government Office issued a state that criticized the Shaanxi Provincial Department of Forestry for procedural flaws during the South China tiger episode.

A critic of the South China tiger photos Fu Dezhi wrote on his blog: The second authentication process has encountered unexpected difficulties.  This is not a crime and does not involve any judicial procedures.  None of the small number of national authentication agencies wants this project.  But it order to guarantee the fairness and objectivity of the authentication, the authorities cannot approach a civilian organization.  That is why the second authentication has been delayed.

(Southern Metropolis Daily, February 21, 2008)

According to an official with the State Department of Forestry, the Shaanxi Provincial Department of Forestry first asked the evidence authentication center of the Ministry of Public Security.  However, the center declined to accept.

Thereafter, the Shaanxi Department of Forestry approached several other authentication agencies.  "No authoritative authentication agency wants to touch this affair," said this official.  There are many reasons, but the most direct one was that the agency heads were cautious and they want to avoid trouble.  On one hand, there is the tremendous pressure from public opinion.  On the other hand, the Shaanxi Department of Foresty has made an unreasonable demand -- if the authentication agency believes that the South China tiger photographs are faked, they must re-create the scene of the fakery as the details.

(Southern Metropolis Daily, February 24, 2008)

According to the Ministry of Public Security's Evidence Authentication Center, there are two reasons why they did not want to take on the project.  First, they only accept the requests from the public security bureau, the procuratorate and the judiciary to handle criminal cases and this one is not a criminal case as yet.  Secondly, they won't want to waste the taxpayers' money.  But if you have the ability to authenticate the evidence but refuse to do so, then aren't you like the taxi driver who refuses to take a customer?  Isn't that a waste of resources?  As for wasting the taxpayers' money, the South China tiger photos do not require any authentication because even ordinary people can tell.  However, the authority of an authentication agency is needed to shut the shameless local government officials up.  If no authentication agency wants to take on this project, it means that the affair remains mired and trust in the government and the administration will continue to erode.  Isn't this a waste of more resources?

According to the Ministry of Justice's Evidence Authentication Center, they say that they "only authenticate people and not animals."  This is even more of a lame excuse.  They are not asked to examine the physical remains of a tiger; they are asked to authenticate photographic images.  There are many ways to do so and they only need to do it in one way to show that the tiger in the photo was not a live entity.

There is no need to spend too time on making moral judgment about these authentication agencies.  There are many more departments, agencies and institutions that have failed.  When a netizen complained to the public security bureau about possible theft of state money as a result of this fakery, the complaint was rejected without explanation.  During the Two Congresses in Shaanxi province, none of the People's Congress representatives or Communist Party Political Consultative Conference representatives brought up this issue at a time when this is an international scandal.

The people of China should be glad that Edison Chen of the Sex Photos Gate does not have the Shaanxi spirit.  If Mr. Chen insisted that the sexy photos were fabricated and then insisted to the authentication center that "if they determined that the sexy photos were realized, then they must reconstruct the original scene of the filming.  Comparing the two, these officials are much worse in terms of morality and conduct than an artiste who likes to have sex photos with his girlfriends.


 

 

 
The newspaper gave a lot of room for the police service provided to Edison Chen at public expense.

(Apple Daily)

At 8am yesterday morning, Edison Chen boarded Phillipine Airlines PR38 in Manila in the company of two black bodyguards.  At 1015am, he arrived at the Hong Kong International Airport.  He passed through Immigration Control and then collected his luggage.  Detectives from the Commercial Crime Bureau then escorted him out through a side door.  He boarded a silver Benz with license plate LS11 in the company of two Commercial Crime Bureau vehicles.  The press caught wind and attempted to follow them.  However, the motorcycle police officers stopped the pursuit.  This was the first time this day that the police stopped the media from doing their work.

At 11am, Edison Chen arrived at the International Trade and Exhibition Centre in Kowloon Bay.  He began to prepare for his 3pm press conference.  The media were notified and they began to arrive at the location by 12 noon.  They saw that more than 60 police officers had set up already.  As more media workers showed up, the police commander summoned more support.  At around 2pm, more than 60 Police Tactical Unit members showed up.  Along with the members of Witness Protection Unit, Commercial Crime Bureau and emergency and traffic units, there were almost 200 police officers at the scene.

The media then got the news that Edison Chen would take the cargo elevator from the sixth floor to the level B1 garage after the press conference.  When they got there, there were more than 60 police officers already there.  When the Benz came to the loading dock, the atmosphere got tense.  But Edison Chen did not show up for some time.  Reportedly, there were some dispute among the Conventional Centre security, Edison Chen's company and the Hong  Kong police about the procedure.  At 4:40pm, Edison Chen finally descended to Level B1 and entered the car.  Dozens of police officers held hands and surrounded the car.  Thus the reporters were forced to stay outside.  The car proceeded slowly and took 17 minutes to cover 300 meters.  Finally, the car went on the expressway.  Meanwhile, the police held up all other vehicular traffic in order to make sure that Edison Chen's entourage can travel unimpeded. 
 
The Benz arrived at the house on Magazine Gap Road at 520pm.  The police then set up a road block and stopped all cars except those belonging to residents from entering.  The reporters had to get off their cars and walk 100 meters up, whereupon they were stopped by another police road block that proclaimed this is to be private road inaccessible to the public.
 
At around 10pm, a police car fleet escorted Edison Chen's vehicle to Four Seasons Hotel.  The car fleet went through red lights twice.
 

 

 

As for the Edison Chen press conference itself, here is the SCMP summary:

ďI would like to say sorry for all the people in Hong Kong. I give my apology sincerely to you all with my heart  ... I am deeply sorry for everything that has happened ... I feel deeply sorry for the impact and influence that [this] event has brought to society and the public. In the future, I will continue working hard and take my life positively ... These photos were very private and are not intended to show to people. These photos were stolen illegally and have [been] distributed without my consent. And these photos had been circulated on the internet maliciously ... I would like to apologise to all the ladies and their families, my family, and to everyone in Hong KongI would like to apologise to all the ladies and their families, my family, and to everyone in Hong Kong ... I know young people in Hong Kong look up to many figures in our society, and in this regard, I failed as a role model. However, I wish this matter will teach the young people in our society a lesson. Let this be a lesson to you all, this is not an example to be set for you ... During my time away, Iíve made an important decision. I will whole-heartedly fulfil all commitments that I have to take but after that, Iíve decided to step away from the Hong Kong entertainment industry... indefinitely... to heal myself and search my soul ... I hope all of you will accept my apology and give me a chance."

Video links: YouTube; 陳冠希道歉記者會(東張西望片段)

(Ming Pao)

For this incident, so far Gillian Chung and Edison Chen have made public statements.  Basically, both of their responses were public relations ploys designed to minimize the damage and win over sympathy.  But they chose different attitudes and their results are different.

For an artiste, such an incident is a crisis for their images and careers.  When they reply, it is critical that they show that they can shoulder the responsibility.  At the Gillian Chung press conference, it was like a show -- she did a monologue of 140 words lasting 65 seconds with her supporters holding up signs that say "Support Twins forever." Afterwards, the supporters chanted "Support you!"  In her short comment Gillian Chung showed no reflection and only said that "I admit tht I had been very naive and very silly, but now I have grown up."  It can be said that from the form to the content, the Gillian Chung press conference had been carefully designed.  Even the newspaper headlines the next day has been rigged by the spin doctor to be "Very naive, very silly" which is consistent with the pure and innocent image that had been carefully crafted for the Twins.

One can believe that Gillian Chung and her managers wanted to fortify her image and derive interests.  But these calculations proved unacceptable to the majority of the citizens.  When Gillian Chung sang in the charity show to raise money for the victims of the snow storms, the Broadcasting Authority received more than 2,000 complaints.  When she appeared in a music award show, TVB received more than 30 complaints.  In this incident, Gillian Chung positioned herself as a victim but she did not win broad sympathy mainly because she appeared insincere and leave people with the angry reaction of having been deceived.

Edison Chen did it differently.  He recognized the importance of showing accountability and responsibility.  During his 6-1/2 minute monologue, he owned up to the facts, he admitted that he was wrong, he apologized and he explained the remedy.  His performance may have been script by a spin doctor, but it was a superior approach.  During his speech, "sorry"/"apologize" was involved ten times.  He repeatedly said that he felt bad, he asked for forgiveness and he wanted people to give him a chance.  The entire speech made people felt that he was speaking sincerely from his heart.

... Following Edison Chen's return, the sexy photo gate affair is likely to be reaching an end.  But even so, the citizens and the authorities must summarize the lessons that are pertinent to the influence of the Internet.  In the past, the virtual world of the Internet was impossible to touch and feel.  While people were aware that the behaviors, attitudes and values of young people are affected by the Internet, people have not dealt with the relevant issues in a serious manner.  The sexy photos gate affair showed the mighty power of the Internet in a way that everybody can feel.  For example, the term "netizens" used to be just an abstract term.  But this time, hundreds of them actually marched in the streets to protest and told society that they are a genuine social group that actually exists.  There are a series of topics for families, government and the whole society about how to know, treat and live with this group.

(Xinhua in English)  Chinese premier's visit brings hope to Henan AIDS-hit villages.  February 21, 2008.

Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao's visit to several AIDS-hit villages in Shangcai County in the central Henan Province in November has left villagers with great hope of leading a better life.    During his Nov. 30 visit, Wen met farmers who had contracted HIV through illegal blood sales in the 1990s and orphans whose parents had died from AIDS.   The premier met Kong Chunyi and other AIDS patients at a clinic in Wenlou Village, home to 373 HIV carriers, a 10th of the village's population.   "I remember he asked me more than a dozen questions," said Kong. "When were you diagnosed with HIV?" "When did you begin to take medicine?" "What kinds of medicine?" "Did the medicine have any side effects?" "Are you the only one in your family who suffers from AIDS?" and other questions Kong answered in detail.   Kong said the premier inspected the clinic and talked with patients who were receiving transfusions. Wen then went further into the village, shaking hands and talking with villagers who stood along the roadside.

Wenlou is a vegetable production base but its products do not sell well due to prejudice by some outsiders. Wen called for greater public awareness about the disease so as to eliminate prejudice against AIDS patients.   "You can tell them the premier has eaten Wenlou's vegetable today," he told villagers.  He then visited the homes of two HIV-infected villagers, Cheng Caixia and Hou Qiuxia. Wen was glad to learn Hou's daughter had passed the university entrance examination last summer and was now away studying. More than a dozen students in the village enter college annually.   "Good fortune will come after hardship, the future of the village is bright," he said.

Xinhua is a news agency and a trip made by Chinese premier on November 30, 2007 does not count as news on February 21, 2008.  So why is this story showing up on this day?

It all began on February 19, 2008, when the Agence France Presse filed a report about an AIDS village in Henan province.  Here is the critical paragraph in Deutsche Welle (in Chinese):

[in translation]  The local authorities were afraid that the truth would get out.  They even went so far as to practice deception on their superiors.  Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao has persisted in coming to visit the AIDS villages and shake hands with AIDS sufferers.  He has visited the Zhou family.  But the residents here did not have the chance to tell this politician about their pain.  The district government rounded up the residents beforehand and corralled them elsewhere.  Amateur actors and actresses took their place instead.

This drew a rebuttal essay from Xinhua in which a reporter reviewed his notes and recordings taken on November 30 when Wen Jiabao visited Shengcai village.  This Xinhua essay can no longer be found on its own (see Boxun), but it is carried on overseas pro-China newspaper websites such as TaKungPao.  The story began with a re-telling of Wen Jiaboa's visit including the meeting with villager Kong Chunyi.  The key section is in the last two paragraphs.

[in translation]  Recently, a certain media reporter wrote a story about "The sensationalistic story of how Wen Jiabao shook the hands of 'actors'" and that 'the government rounded up the residents beforehand and corralled them elsewhere with amateur actors and actresses taking their place instead."

I recall the sincere faces of these villagers, the responses that only AIDS patients can come up with and the authenticity of the scenes that I observed as a member of the entourage of the Premier.  I reviewed my notes, I listened again to the tape recordings and reviewed/organized everything.  I must say: That other report was irresponsible, counterfactual and completely fictional.

So this is a matter of shipping different products to different markets based upon the needs.  In mainland China, there is no need to tell people about the AFP report on the amateur actors and actresses.  In fact, there is no need to tell them anything (in Chinese).  In English, there is no harm in retelling the story again even if there is no need.  However, the AFP report is to be avoided.  The true audience for this rebuttal is for the Chinese reader outside of mainland China, who might have come across the AFP report.

Takungpao included this report of Wen Jiabao shaking hands with someone at the health clinic in Wenlou village (Shengcai county).  A proper piece of journalism would be for Xinhua to send a reporter immediately back to Wenlou village to identify the person shaking the hand of the Premier, check his background (amatuer actor? or vegetable grower?) and interview him.

I just watched a video clip.  I was upset because such a disgusting person actually exists in this world!

The story in the video is as follows: A girl was playing at home with a dog and a man was filming.  The man clearly realized that the dog was on heat and he anticipated what the dog was going to do next.  Indeed the dog started to attack the girl and the man did nothing to stop the action.  Finally he let the girl stand up.  But the dog jumped on her again and held her down on the sofa.  The dog began a rhythmic motion.  The girl was scared and began to cry, sobbing out "Uncle, help me!"  The man laughed and did not intercede.  The girl struggled to get up and chased the dog out of the room.  At this point, another man came in and asked: "Are you abusing the dog?"  The uncle laughed and said, "No, this is not abusing the the animal.  The animal is abusing the young child."  The dog was still circling outside the room.  The man would not stop and called the dog to enter.  The girl is crying again.  Finally the man chased the dog out.

I don't know whether this man was the devil in this previous life.  But he is definitely lower than a dog or pig in this life.  I don't know how much trauma the girl has suffered.  I do know that this has left a nightmare in my heart.  I am angry and sad beyond words ...

I hope that you can all watch the video (also at 6.cn) and then we all begin the first "human flesh search" of 2008 to find this beastly uncle.  Then we will send a thousand dogs to screw him!!!!

(Daqi)  Here is the progress of the search:

- I used Baidu to look up ID for posting the video.  It is "johnnyjing.'
- The accent on the video appears to be northerneastern China?
- This person is definitely from Beijing.  The name of the dog is 'brain.'
- Not sure if this is Beijing accent.  But this is definitely northern China.  The room has these cabinets and paintings.  It does not appear to be in a big city.
- The girl's chair has the insignia of a Shanghai wine company
- This person is probably working in Shanghai.  The company website has a server in Taiwan
...

Then a Tianya netizen named "cgbird" questioned the moral bottom line of the "human flesh search."  Immediately people suspected that "cgbird" was a sock puppet of "johnnyjing."  So the "human search engine" was diverted to "cgbird" instead.

- This ID is useful today.  Aren't you afraid of the "human flesh search engine"?
- This "cgbird" is from Beijing.  I don't know if he is related to the person who made the video.
- I just found out that "cgbird" owns a dog.  I can now confrim that the uncle is "cgbird" with 100% certainty.

This morning, "cgbird" posted an essay <Who is going to apologize to cgbird>, in which he clarified that he was not connected to the video maker or the person who post it.  Once again, he questioned the morality of the "human flesh search engine" and he claimed to be seriously hurt.  He wrote:

Why did someone connect me with the video affair itself?  Because I expressed the following viewpoints:

First, I believe that the video was made by a fucking dickhead who thought he was money but actually offended and hurt others.  He was not necessarily objectively perverse, because he did intercede at two points during the process.

Second, I oppose the use of the human flesh search engine to expose the private details of others and then intercede with violence.

So, for making those two points, someone thought that I was the person who made the video.  Thereafter, they began to direct the human flesh search engine onto me.  Someone took charge of stating the suspicions, some collected hearsay and rumors, some searched for my information, some took charge of dissemination of information and still others took over to insult and curse me.

So which one of you will be responsible for verifying the accuracy of the information and speculation?  If I am shown not to the person who uploaded the video, which one of you will be responsible for apologizing to "cgbird"?"  Who will be responsible for explaining to the people who have misunderstood?  Who will be responsible for deleting the incorrect information that has been disseminated?

... This case is a concrete demonstration of the lack of justice and limits for the human flesh search engine.  I seriously oppose the use of the human flesh search engine to solve problems via Internet violence.


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