The Internet world is different in that if you are able to tickle people's nerve, then a seemingly trivial statement can become red-hot and an easily forgettable news story can become huge.  The persistence of the Chinese people in this regard is lovable at times, but their relentlessness can also be frightening.  Earlier this year, we had Zhang Ziyi's "Donation Gate."  Now we have Jun Tang's "Academic Credentials Gate."  These episodes let us feel the awesome power of Internet public opinion.

Jun Tang's name is well-known, even deafeningly so; Jun Tang is a slick talker who can talk anything up; Jun Tang is highly capable and get anything he wants in China.  Yet, I think that when the "Emperor of Wage Earners" ran smack into the "Anti-Fakery Warrior" this time, he is not going to end up well.

In such situations in the past, celebrities think that they are omnipotent and can mislead people.  But they don't realize that their fame was given to them by the people.  They don't know that if water can carry the ship, it can also capsize the ship.  Or perhaps the celebrities have lost their senses.  They did wrong and they were exposed.  But they believed that their fame will allow them to bulldoze people into ignoring their problems.  But it turns out that one lie requires ten lies to cover up, and things only get worse.

We acknowledge that Jun Tang is a successful entrepreneur.  His success is the result of his intelligence and diligence.  But even as Jun Tang teaches his art and science to young admirers, he embellished himself unnecessarily.

Based upon the disclosed information, there were many occasions in which Jun Tang was described as having a doctor of philosophy degree in Electrical Engineering/Computer Science from the California Institute of Technology.  Let us put aside the question where he actively engaged in fakery. In China, I can understand that some people may want to please celebrities by cheer-leading, much like the way deification took place during the Cultural Revolution.  But how could a celebrity and a company leader like Jun Tang not value his own reputation?  How could he let people heap undeserved praises on himself without being embarrassed?

In order to prove that he had studied for a doctorate in the United States, Jun Tang shared his Pacific Western University doctor of philosophy diploma with reporters.  This diploma clearly states that Jun Tang was awarded a doctor of philosophy in electrical engineering in April 1994.

According to the Education Division of the Chinese Consulate in Los Angeles, the California Bureau for Private Post-secondary and Vocational Education had certified the Pacific Western University to operate between June 15, 1998 and June 14, 2002.  However, two obvious questions are raised.  Firstly, the Pacific Western University was only allowed to award bachelor, master and doctor degrees in business administration.  How could they award a doctorate in Electrical Engineering to Jun Tang?  Secondly, the date is wrong.  Jun Tang received his degree in 1994 when the Pacific Western University was yet not certified to award doctorates.  It is no wonder the the Education Division at the L.A. Consulate was unable to find any record of the person named Jun Tang in its files.

Jun Tang's explanation is risible: "My overall experience is that I studied five years in a doctoral program at the Nagoya University, but I left for the United States before my thesis advance.  In the United States, I attempted to obtain my doctorate through programs that allow me to get the degree solely on the basis of a thesis.  Finally, I conducted some supervised research at the private Pacific Western University and obtained a doctorate.  I have documentation for all of this."  Obviously, Jun Tang did not really study for a doctorate in the United States.  He might have been too smart and kept looking for short cuts.  We all know that normal American universities do not award doctorates so easily.  If you don't register and you don't take course credits, you won't get a doctorate solely on the basis of your thesis.  If you haven't lived in the United States, you may not know that.  But Jun Tang had studied and worked in the United States for many years, so he must know that.  Therefore, there is some basis for assuming that he bought his degree.

If the Jun Tang occurred in the western world, his resignation would be inevitable because nobody will accept a prevaricating leader for a company.  In China, some people don't think this is a big deal.  They even think that the matter is being overblown by Fang Zhouzi.  Some people sasy: Who cares whether Jun Tang has a valid diploma as long as he is being a good manager?  But this is misrepresenting the issue.

We don't care whether Jun Tang has a EE/CS doctorate from Caltech.  We don't care whether he is a EE doctorate at PWU.  It doesn't matter to us one way or the other.  But it did matter to Jun Tang once upon a time.  Because it mattered to him, he lied about it.  So now we care about his lack of credibility, trustworthiness and ethics and his illegal methods in maximizing his personal benefits.

Jun Tang's "Academic Credentials Gate" is a test of the tolerance of Chinese people.  It is the moral bottom line.  If Jun Tang can get out of this predicament safe and sound, then nobody will care about anyone's overseas diplomas anymore.  I hope that China will not head in that direction.  I sincerely hope to see the "warriors" can bring down this fake "emperor."

A close friend of Jun Tang has told a shocking story.  Half a month before Jun Tang's "Academic Credentials Gate" broke open, Jun Tang received an anonymous call from a man.  This man claimed that he has the complete truth/evidence about Jun Tang's overseas academic credentials and jobs, including the erroneous statements in biographies.  This man even has the evidence in the IPO statement of Shanda Interactive Entertainment Inc.  This man demanded a gag fee of 10,000,000 yuan from Jun Tang.  If the sum is not transferred to the designated account within half a month, the evidence will be published.  This person also claimed to have extensive media contacts and could therefore ruin Jun Tang in an instant.  At the time, Jun Tang adamantly refused to comply and hung up the phone immediately.

About a week later, the mysterious caller called again and gave an ultimatum.  He said that this was the last chance.  Once again, he said that the ironclad evidence will ruin Jun Tang with certainty!

When Jun Tang got that second call, he was actually unsure.  His friends advised him to be resolute, otherwise he will only subject himself to more extortions down the line.  At the time, the friend advised him to call the police but Jun Tang did not.  Perhaps the friends did not realize that Jun Tang's academic credentials were flawed.

One week later, Jun Tang received a call from a friend who gave him the URL on the Jun Tang's "Academic Credentials Gate."  Jun Tang went there and almost fainted when he saw what was on there.  The various pieces of evidence on dodgy academic credentials came as promised.  Furthermore, they came in planned stages.

"Exposure," "denunciation" ... the vocabulary that seemed to have disappeared thirty years ago is back once again.  Further, the meticulous planning and airtight evidence are not just a haphazard expos.  Instead it is a planned, organized anti-fakery action.

Who made that mysterious phone call?  What evil purpose is behind the moral stance of the anti-fakery crusade?  Jun Tang's "Academic Credentials Gate" may have some truth behind it, but what is the significance of the evil plot behind and the two extortion demands for 10,000,000 yuan?

Where is Jun Tang's life heading?  What is the truth?  Is there fakery behind the fakery?  Is there an even greater evil behind the evil?

At a time when we are running around telling each other about Jun Tang's "Academic Credentials Gate," have we thought about the inside story behind the scene?  Is there a huge commercial interest group hidden behind the anti-fakery campaign?

The masses need to rub their eyes until they are clear and bright so that they don't be easily fooled!  Is this a case of the villain launching the denunciation, or a case of dog bit dog?  This is still unknown at the present!

[ESWN Comment:  If you don't like an accusation, you impugn the accuser (such as by questioning his motives while glossing over the facts).  For Jun Tang's "Academic Credentials Gate," all the so-called "evidence" is already in the public domain.  There is nothing that anyone could not find out on their own anyway.  For example, the Shanda IPO statement is at:

(NASDAQ)  Shanda Interactive Entertainment Inc filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.  April 2, 2004.

JUN TANG has served as our president since February 2004. Prior to joining us, Mr. Tang served as the president of Microsoft China Co., Ltd. from March 2002 to January 2004 and the general manager of Microsoft Asia product support and service and Microsoft Global Technical Engineering Center from January 1998 to March 2002. Mr. Tang holds a doctorate degree in electrical engineering from University of Pacific Western, a doctorate degree in electronics from Nagoya University, Japan, a master's degree in electronics from Nagoya University and a bachelor's degree in physics from Beijing University of Posts and Telecommunications.]

The Jinda Company is a Hong Kong-Macau-Taiwan capital company located in Shuiping village, Dalang town, Dongguan city, Guangdong province.  Its main products are metal accessory parts, chemical industrial pipes, etc.  It is not a big factory.  It has fewer than 100 employees.  Its factory space is relatively small, with only 5 restrooms for employees.

As of July 5, the restrooms were padlocked.  When the employees asked the security guard, they were told about the new regulations.  According to these new regulations, each employee cannot accumulate more than 260 minutes in restroom usage over the course of a month.  Any usage over this limit will be deducted from the number of hours worked.

The Jinda Company pays on an hourly basis.  Reducing work hours means reducing wages.  In order to measure the actual time spent using restrooms, the new regulations require each employee to register with the security guard, who will issue the key as well as record the length of time until the employee returns the key.

The security guard at the Jinda Company is a middle-aged man.  Female employees feel embarrassed to ask him for permission to use the restroom because they tend to be traditionally minded people from rural areas.  It is worse to let a man record the amount of time that they spend each time.

The new regulations also cause problems for male employees.  There are many unregulated food stalls in the vicinity of the factory.  The male employees spend a lot of time drinking wine and chatting there.  The male employees are afraid that if they catch diarrhea from unclean food, they will suffer wage losses.  One male employee pointed out that 260 minutes per month works out to fewer than 9 minutes per day.  Since it can take 10 minutes to perform a "number one," they are going to be losing wages.

Yesterday, the Jinda Company manager explained why they had no choice but to adopt these regulations.

According to her, their products are special in that they require several employees to work together to finish.  As a result, the company cannot pay people by the piece.  Instead, they pay hourly wages.  Some employees take advantage of this arrangement and sneak off to the restrooms for long periods of time.  This manager also said that many of their workers are young people who like to play QQ.  They have found many employees sneaking off to the restrooms to play QQ on their mobile phones.  This delays production as well as demoralizes other employees.

This manager said that she also thought that the new regulations were inhumane.  However, they had no choice because they were unable to come up with anything better.  She claimed that she had consulted friends in the courts and only introduced the new regulations after being told that there is no problem.

Our reporter checked with the Labor Department at Dalang town.  The Labor Department said that these regulations were clearly illegal because there is no legal basis whatsoever.

Yesterday afternoon, the Jinda Company said that they will remove these regulations with some reservation.  While the company will not link restroom time to wages, they will continue to record the time spent using restrooms and use the data for employee performance appraisal.  The male workers found the decision acceptable, but some female employees were still concerned about their right to privacy.

Upon information, the phenomenon of loafing among workers is quite common within companies in Dongguan.  According to professor Liang Xiaomin, there are several systematic ways of providing incentives to workers.  (1) Pay by the piece, so that the more pieces finished, the higher the wages.  (2) Pay higher wages than other companies so that the workers will value this job and work hard.  (3) Offer company shares to the workers so that company and workers interests coincide.  (4) Split the wages into two parts, one part being fixed and the other part being a bonus pay determined by company business performance.

At Baidu, there is a very popular forum post.

The title is: "I am from the near future; please enter if you want to know."

The content of that post is:

I come from the near future.  I know that many people with treat my words like a joke.  I am willing to offer you some factual evidence.

The evidence that I provide is very simple.  At the moment, the whole world has its attention on the FIFA World Cup.  In the final game, the two sides shall be Holland and Spain.  Holland will defeat Spain by a score of 2:1.  Sneijder and another substitute player that you won't be able to guess will score the goals.  I hope that these words do not reach South Africa before that game, because I am concerned that players will be affected psychologically and thus change the outcome of the game.

I shall be back one month later.  At that time, I hope that you will be willing to believe everything that I say about the future!

Author: "X Came From The Future"
Time of post: 2010-6-13 12:04

As I write this essay, there are 8,509 comments and 500 re-posts.  There are 2,520 fans who follow this author.

This is an amazing story!  This author predicted the outcome of the World Cup final a month ago.  So far, he has been proven right.  The large number of comments show that people are impressed by the accuracy of his prediction so far.

We know that it is hard to predict the World Cup.  Even famous soccer veterans like Pele and Franz Beckenbauer are frequently wrong, never mind plain folks like us.  On a random basis, the chances of guessing the two finalists out of the 32 qualifiers is (1/32)*(1/31) = 1/992.  If we eliminate the weaker teams down to a list of 10 strong qualifiers, there is still only a (1/10)*(1/9) = 1/90 chance.  So this prediction by "X Came From The Future" is somewhat miraculous.

What about this person?  Based upon the public Baidu information, "X Came From The Future" has written very little.  In the comments to this post, he wrote: "If you want to know more about the future, you can try to leave your email address here.  I can forward some photos and videos of Holland winning the World Cup.  But you must delete them after you view them for reasons that you must understand."

Apart from the above, he made a new post on June 19: "I will be very busy during the second half of the year.  Please be psychologically ready."

This is very ambiguous and seems to be intentionally confusing.

The most important thing here is the prediction of the finalists.  Everybody wanted to know if there is someone who can really predict the future?  If not, then how was he able to make good his prediction (so far)? ...

[Note: Nobody who left an email address has received photos/videos of the Holland win before the game actually took place.  The audience statistics are now 210,314 comments; 6,912 re-posts; 38,706 followers]

Was this yet another Internet promotional campaign for something or the other?  Here is a comment to this blog post:

Firstly, this post by "X Came From The Future" has been drawing comments continuously over the past month.  It did not start only after the quarterfinals.  When the post appeared on June 13, it was already drawing attention.  People were commenting on a daily basis.  At first, they made fun of it.  If someone was running a promotional campaign, they'd have to make 992 different predictions and make sure that each gets the appropriate number of comments on a continuous basis.  I don't think that this is operationally feasible.

Secondly, this post began to draw a lot of attention by the time of the final eight.  There should be many similar predictions, falling into 4x4 = 16 possible combinations.  But so far only this post has received a disproportionate amount of attention.  Nobody cared about the other combinations such as (Uruguay vs. Germany, Holland vs. Germany, Uruguay vs. Germany, etc).

Thirdly, logically speaking, it is enough to predict the finalists and the eventual winner.  There is no need to predict the score and the goal scorers.  This is now a much harder prediction task, so that there could not be parallel posts that consider other outcomes.

Therefore, I don't think that this is a promotional campaign coming from a handful of people.  Over at the 2012 post bar at Baidu, there is a number of regular visitors.  If numerous posts making different predictions show up suddenly, they will be noticed.  It is not possible to manipulate this.

(Guangzhou Daily)

At 8:20pm on July 1, Fang Zhouzi posted a response to an inquiry: "Tang Jun's California Institute of Technology PhD degree is fake.  Should we replicate how to construct fakery?:

Previously in April 21, 2009, a netizen had already challenged the academic credentials of Tang Jun at Fang Zhouzi's website xys.org.  This netizen said that he had studied at CalTech from 1991 to 1996 and he had never heard of Tang Jun.  Subsequently Fang Zhouzi wrote that he was unable to locate Tang Jun's doctoral thesis in the American database.

When Fang Zhouzi raised the issue again this time, he was challenged to produce evidence.  Fifty minutes later, he produced two pieces of evidence: (1) Tang Jun is not on the list of CalTech alumni; (2) no thesis by Tang Jun can be found in the American database of doctoral theses.  Later, Fang Zhouzi produced more evidence: "No person of Chinese descent had ever obtained a computer science doctorate before 2001, and no one with the family name Tang has ever done so before or since."

According to information, in the book <My success can be replicated> by Tang Jun, the 56-th paragraph of the 2nd chapter is: "By the time that I started my second company, I was almost ready to abandon my studies.  But by virtue of the research on linguistic classification, I eventually obtained a computer science doctor of philosophy degree from the California Institute of Technology."

The series of microblog posts by Fang Zhouzi drew Internet attention.  Fang admitted that he had not actually read Tang's book but he conducted an investigation after receiving a denunciation ...  "In Tang Jun's <My success can be replicated>, he said that he learned to use email the first time when he began to work at Microsoft in 1994.  As a biology department student, I began using email in 1992.  How can he not have used email as a computer science department doctoral student at CalTech?"

Fang then turned his attention to the other claims of Jun Tang.  "In the 1990's he had a number of inventions after he arrived in America.  These inventions made him money and thus led him to the attention of Microsoft.  But the database of the US Patent and Trademark Office had nothing on anyone named Jun Tang prior to 1999.  Since this was the name that was used when Jun Tang joined Microsoft, it is unlikely that he had obtained his patent rights under some other name."

... Our reporter has attempted unsuccessfully to contact Jun Tang to obtain his response.  Tang's secretary Ms. Li said: "Fang Zhouzi has a problem.  He is wildly biased.  He is writing all this to promote himself.  We do not intend to respond because we think that it is futile to respond to questions from people like that!"

To date, Jun Tang has kept silent.  His microblog is being updated, but he was only writing about his thoughts on World Cup Soccer.  He has said nothing about the salvos from Fang Zhouzi.

(CRI)  July 6, 2010.

Q: The first question from popular scientist Fang Zhouzi is that Jun Tang claimed to have a doctoral degree from CalTech, but the list of alumni does not include the name Jun Tang.  No person of Chinese descent had obtained a computer science PhD before 2001 and no one named Tang has obtained one since.  There is also no entry for anyone named Jun Tang in the American database of doctoral theses.  How do you respond?
A: I have never stated at any time in any situation (including in my book) that I hold a doctoral degree from the California Institute of Technology.  I have spend a certain amount of time doing research at CalTech and I have obtained a doctoral degree.  But I do not have a CalTech PhD.

Q: So from which American university did you obtain your doctorate?
A: I spent five years studying for a doctoral degree in Japan but I gave up my thesis defense in order to go to America.  When I arrived in America, I explored how I could turn a thesis into a doctoral degree at various universities.  Eventually, I conducted some research at the private Pacific Western University and obtained a doctoral degree.  I have documents for all that.

Q.  On July 3, Fang Zhouzi wrote in his microblog that Jun Tang claimed to have invented the "prompt photo camera" in a course of two days and then he sold patent rights to a Japanese company for USD 500,000.  But all the information about the "prompt photo camera" showed that it was invented by a 30-year-old Japanese woman somewhere between 1994 and 1995.  Also, the first Karaoke ranking system patent was obtained by a person named Sasaki Miho and not by Jun Tang.  There are no patents given to Jun Tang by the US Patent and Trademark Office before 1999.  How do you respond?
A: I can say that I invented the prototype of the prompt photo.  I sold the prototype to a Japanese company.  I never said that I had the patent rights to the prompt photo.  But I owned the rights to the prototype.  I have said so in all my speeches.
Secondly, I came up with the design and technology of the Karaoke ranking system.  Then I developed the model.  I negotiated with a Korean company which eventually applied for the patent rights.  I feel that I had the rights in terms or either technology or concept.  I invented it.  I created the design, software and hardware.  So why can't I say that it is mine?

(NASDAQ)  Shanda Interactive Entertainment Inc filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.  April 2, 2004.

JUN TANG has served as our president since February 2004. Prior to joining us, Mr. Tang served as the president of Microsoft China Co., Ltd. from March 2002 to January 2004 and the general manager of Microsoft Asia product support and service and Microsoft Global Technical Engineering Center from January 1998 to March 2002. Mr. Tang holds a doctorate degree in electrical engineering from University of Pacific Western, a doctorate degree in electronics from Nagoya University, Japan, a master's degree in electronics from Nagoya University and a bachelor's degree in physics from Beijing University of Posts and Telecommunications.

(Quackwatch)

Purporting to be a prospective student, our investigator placed telephone calls to three schools that award academic credits based on life experience and require no classroom instruction: Barrington University (Mobile, Alabama); Lacrosse University (Bay St. Louis, Mississippi); and Pacific Western University (Los Angeles, California). These schools each charge a flat fee for a degree. For example, fees for degrees for domestic students at Pacific Western University are as follows: Bachelor of Science ($2,295); Master's Degree in Business Administration ($2,395); and PhD ($2,595). School representatives emphasized to our undercover investigator that they are not in the business of providing, and do not permit students to enroll for, individual courses or training. Instead, the schools market and require payment for degrees on a flat-fee basis.

 

Last evening at around 8pm, a 38-year-old man named Xie robbed a man south of the train station in Guangzhou city. The victim resisted and Xie used his scissors to stab him.  The police set off after Xie once they received reports.

At 8:30pm, Xie got to the intersection of Liuhua Road and started waving his scissors.  The police ordered him to put down the scissors.  But Xie ran towards the train station.

When Xie got to the bus stop, he grabbed a young woman who was waiting for a bus.  With his right hand holding the scissors and his left hand around the young woman's neck, Xie entered a ATM office.

A large number of police officers sealed off the scene for the negotiators to work.  At 8:50pm, the police specialists arrived at the scene.  It was reported that snipers were posted at the scene.

At 9pm, our reporter arrived at the scene and observed a man with a crew-cut hairdo wrapping his left arm around the neck of a young woman while holding a knife aimed at her throat.  She looked no older than 20 and in a lot of distress.

The man then started speaking to a policeman 20 meters away.  The policeman "invited" the man to talk to him, trying to calm him down and persuade him to put down his weapon.  Several other policemen tried to edge near Xie.

At 9:10pm, Xie was clearly getting agitated.  He yelled loudly and stabbed the young woman in the hands and legs to make his point.  The woman looked dazed while blood covered the right half of her body.  She was unable to say anything.

The police moved the police line backwards to give more room.  By now the spectators were watching what the policeman in front was doing.  They said to themselves, "The police are going to use force."

At 9:25, a short woman with a pony tail and white t-shirt came up to offer a beverage bottle.  She threw the bottle on the ground in front of Xie.  When Xie bent down to pick the bottle, the pony-tailed woman reached for a pistol on her hip and fired a shot at Xie.  When Xie fell backwards into the ATM office on impact, the pony-tailed woman went up and fired three more shots.  The whole action took only three seconds.

Police officer rushed to retrieve the hostage and sent her off to the hospital in an ambulance.

At 9:50pm, the deceased robber was taken away.  Five minutes later, traffic was re-opened in the Liuhua district.

The rumor of the "bombing of the aircraft carrier USS George Washington" was a case of masturbation by some Chinese netizens.  But we should be wary about whether this kind of masturbation helps to advance the talk of the "Chinese threat."

Recently there was a popular Internet forum post entitled <The world in shock!  Aircraft carrier USS George Washington hit by cruise missile>.  This post claimed: "According to the latest news from CNN at local American time 21:19 (Beijing time 16:18), an incident took place to the shock of the world.  The American nuclear-powered aircraft carrier USS Washington was cruising in open waters when it was hit by an unidentified cruise missile.  The fuel on board caught fire.  One lieutenant and 23 sailors were dead.  Nine F18 jets were destroyed.  Other damages are still being estimated."  Apart from the text, the post included 8 photos on "the USS George Washington being hit" and "the American military base in Japan recording the launching of the cruise missile on radar."  The logo on the photo says "club.china.com" but that website did not contain this post.

Although many netizens were contemptuous towards this post ("Please study PhotoShop seriously before making up rumors!"), some netizens were shocked and wanted to know more.  The relevant Sina.com microblog post was deleted shortly afterwards.  As someone noted, "At the Sina.com microblog, there are usually 4,000 to 5,000 re-posts of rumors but fewer than 200 re-posts that rebut rumors."

Any netizen with commonsense should be able to tell that this was a piece of false news.  No regular channels (such as the mainstream media) had the relevant information.  There was no attempt to even dispel this rumor, which showed that is was not credible.

However, the emotions of the netizens who responded deserves some attention.

The USS George Washington is undoubtedly the world's most advanced aircraft carrier.  It is 333 meters long and 77 meters wide.  It has a crew of 5,550 persons.  It carries more than 90 airplanes including FA-18 jet fighters and E-2C early warning airplanes.  It is part of a battle group with 9 Aegis destroyers and 3 nuclear submarines.  In September 2008, the USS George Washington went to Japan to take place of the conventionally powered USS Kitty Hawk, now retired.

The rumor about the "bombing of the USS George Washington" is really masturbation by the Chinese netizens.  According to news reports, South Korean and the United States plan to hold joint naval exercises in the Yellow Sea in July.  The South Korean media claimed that the Japan-based USS George Washington will participate in this military exercise.  But other reports say that the United States has not yet decided whether the aircraft carrier will participate.  Analysts say that the USS George Washington battle group has a coverage radius of 600 kilometers.  Since the Yellow Sea is the gateway into northern China (including Beijing), the USS George Washington's entry into the Yellow Sea will put Beijing within its attack radius.

The general opinion is that the purpose of the joint South Korea-United States naval exercise is to warn North Korea.  In March this year, the South Korean naval ship Cheonan was sunk in the Yellow Sea with 46 casualties.  The South Korean investigation concluded that the Cheonan had been sunk by a North Korean torpedo.

Although the goal was aimed at North Korea, China had to be wary due to the proximity of the Yellow Sea.

Recently the Chinese military took two actions.  On June 24, the People's Liberation Army announced that they will be doing live ammunition artillery practice from midnight to 18:00 from June 30 to July 5 between Zhoushan and Taozhou into the ocean.  The Foreign Ministry claimed that this was just routine military training and unrelated to the situation in the Korean peninsula.  But why issue a denial for a non-event?  Isn't that too obvious?  Xinhua's <World Military Affairs> magazine chief editor Chen Fu said that "China wants to use the entry of this large aircraft carrier battle group as the ideal practice target."  There is no doubt that "the large aircraft carrier battle group" refers to the USS George Washington.

The other Chinese response is even more obvious.  The People's Liberation Army deputy chief of the general staff said on July 1: "We very much oppose this military exercise because the Yellow Sea is very close to the Chinese territorial waters."  "We have clearly indicated our objections to their military exercise."

When there is such a vigorous official opposition, it is no surprise that some Chinese netizen would make up the story that "an American aircraft carrier has been bombed."  In a certain sense, this can be regarded as the interplay between the official and civilian sectors in response to the South Korea-American military exercise in the Yellow Sea.

"The bombing of the USS George Washington" does have an original model.  In May this year, American commander James Kraskas wrote <China Set For Naval Hegemony>.  In that essay, he fictionalized the Sino-American sea battle of 2015: China launched a devastating attack on the USS George Washington at the Yokosuka naval base.  Fires were blazing, explosions everywhere ...

The fictional account by the American commander about China attacking an American aircraft carrier carries a strong flavor of "the China threat" meme.  In the false news report about the bombing of the American aircraft carrier, the repeated official Chinese rebuttals of the "Chinese threat" talk and certain "patriotic" Chinese netizens joined hands.  Could the masturbation of the Chinese netizens end up advancing the "Chinese threat" talk instead?

On March 30, 2009, the Yong'an police station in Foshan city, Guangdong province decided to establish an online "Yong'an Police Affairs Room" at the local online C2000 forum.  Police officer Liao Haibiao was a skilled Internet user and was therefore appointed as the inaugural Yong'an sheriff.

The birthday gift that Liao Haibiao received for his first year anniversary was a microblog.  "Right now, I am basically on the Internet twenty-four hours a day.  If I can't get to a computer, I will use the mobile phone."

Liao Haibiao did not really want to reveal his identity.  "When tips come in, I coordinate with my colleagues.  I was merely responsible for communicating with netizens, forwarding tips and issuing progress reports."  He said, "I prefer to keep a low profile.  At first, I was criticized by netizens ever day.  There was nothing but curses in their comments."  With the media reports about himself, Liao is sometimes even recognized in the streets as the "sheriff."

Liao Haibiao is an experienced Internet user.  He bought his first computer in 2000 and began to spend a lot of time online.  "I get on the Internet to chat, read forum posts and make comments.  When something upsets me, I quarrel with others.  Nobody knows who you are on the Internet anyway."

Liao Haibiao is thoughtful about people's attitudes towards the police.  "Whenever people run into something, they will always immediately be suspicious about the police."  When people encounter thieves, they complain about public safety and they say: "Where are the police?  We are unsafe!"  When people are stopped by the police for minor violations, they complain about police over-reaction and they say: "Why are the police bothering with this?  Why don't they go catch murderers, robbers and thieves?"  Liao said: "Back then, the public security bureau was not pro-active enough towards the Internet.  If that should be allowed to continue, it would undoubtedly be a vicious cycle in which the police and the people don't have basic trust of each other."

On October 17, 2009, the netizen "Blue Depression" made a post entitled <Police = Gangsters>.  He claimed that on October 16, his 60-year-old father was arrested for "recreational gambling" after breakfast.  When he learned the news, he went down to the police station with his father.  A police officer told him: "Don't worry.  Your father will be released around 2pm."  "Blue Depression" made more inquiries but was kept being told that "the procedure has not been completed yet so the release cannot be made yet."

At past 7pm that evening, "Blue Depression" returned to the police station.  He was worried about this father and asked the police loudly: "What does it take to release my father?"  They argued for three minutes.  "Blue Depression" claimed that he was physically assaulted by several policemen.  "I only remember uttering one obscenity and I was beaten up."  At around midnight, the father of "Blue Depression" was released.  "Blue Depression" then posted his story plus photos onto the Internet under the title <Police = Gangsters>.  The post drew several thousand comments.

"At the time, public opinion on the Internet was one-sidedly negative."  Liao Haibiao had already returned home.  "My other colleagues were asked to go back to the police station and conduct an investigation of the matter."  Suddenly the Yong'an Sheriff was in the limelight.  "Under the circumstances, most people would think that the police was at fault.  The solution would be to get the websites to delete the post."  But this Yong'an sheriff chose to deal with the facts.  "The undeniable fact was that the police did not beat anyone up (because we had the videos).  We did not ask the post to be deleted.  We found the principal and spoke to him in a calm manner."

On October 20, "Blue Depression" removed the post himself.  He said that he had watched the unedited video provided by the police and his injury was not caused by police assault.  "I misled the netizens and I apologize to them."

"When there is an incident, we should disclose the truth immediately."  Liao Haibiao said that netizens want the government or relevant departments to provide information in a timely manner.  As the sheriff, he prefers not to use violent methods such as deleting posts.  "That will only have the opposite effect because the people will think that the police are covering up the truth."

At about 8:10pm on December 13, 2009, a man stabbed a woman and set her on fire at the Dongfang Plaza in Chancheng district, Foshan city.  The man subsequently set himself on fire.

At around 8:54pm, a netizen posted photos with text: "A woman was being assaulted by a man on the stairs.  He poured gasoline on her and set her on fire.  Then he embraced her so that he was also on fire."  Immediately, innumerable netizens raised questions as rumors circulated wildly.

At 8:50pm, the city/district police and the Yong'an police station received reports and rushed to the scene.  Netizens were also broadcasting live.

"Even as my colleagues were investigating at the scene, they kept asking me whether netizens were providing information."  Liao Haibiao was home already, but he immediately checked the Internet forums.  "Twenty minutes after the incident, a netizen posted a video.  I immediately contacted that netizen for help to assist the police investigation."

"When I forwarded the video information to the frontline colleagues, they were astonished."  Liao Haibiao said.  "The front colleagues can only interrogate the witnesses still present at the scene.  But these may not be the initial witnesses.  This netizen who made the video not only witnessed the scene, but he had first-hand information.  He provide the most direct lead for us to understand the case rapidly."

At 11:30pm, ten thousand Foshan netizens were still following the self-immolation story.  "The C2000 boss called me and asked me about the situation.  He said that they did not care go to sleep until they found out what happened."  Liao Haibiao recalled.  "Even the website operators did not dare go home.  There were too many users  online.  They were afraid that their websites would be paralyzed.  They were hoping that the police could make a public statement."  The netizens also called for the Yong'an sheriff to make a statement "because we will wait."

At 0:40am the next morning, the Yong'an sheriff made a public statement: "The so-called self-immolation at Dongfang Plaza was a case of intentional murder in which a woman died and a man was seriously injured.  The case is still being investigated.  More information will be released at a later time."  This announcement was read by more than 40,000 persons that night, with more than 160 comments.  People said that the Yong'an sheriff "prevented rumor mongering (such as the incident being a suicide pact)."

Here is an interview.

Q: In the beginning, netizens didn't trust you.  But now netizens await your information.  How did the attitudes of the netizens change so radically?
A: I had to actually solve problems for citizens.  When I can solve problems in a timely and effective manner while being monitored by society, the netizens will see the results.  We had repeated complaints about the Baiyan Street problem.  After we cleaned it up, those complainants are now our loyal fans.  They often provide tips for us now.

Q: If you can't solve the problem quickly, how can you account yourself to the netizens?
A: We have a set of procedures.  I gather netizen complaints and I forward them to the police leaders, who will assign the tasks to their staff.  Usually, an answer will be available within 5 days.  If the matter isn't resolved by then, we will make a progress report.  Most netizens will understand and they know that many complaints cannot be solved immediately.

Q: What is your biggest frustration during your first year as the sheriff?
A: (laughs)  Many colleagues probably blame me for increasing their workload.  (laughs)  But it is their cooperation that gained such a good reputation for the Yong'an sheriff.

Q: What are the qualifications for being the Yong'an sheriff?
A: You must be familiar with the Internet, and you must understand the various aspects of police business.  You must be able to handle netizen opinions appropriately.  If the netizens get emotionally excited, you must not respond with nasty language.  After all, the Yong'an sheriff represents the image of the police station.  Also, you have to cope with plenty of overtime work.  Although you can work from home, it will still take up a lot of your personal time.  You must learn to sacrifice.

Q: Does your family complain about the fact that you are keeping an eye on the Internet 24 hours a day?
A: How is it possible not to?  My wife complains that I don't have time for her.  But my child is supportive.  When my wife complains, the child says: "Mom, don't interfere.  Dad is gathering tips on the Internet."  Of course, I am not on the Internet all 24 hours a day.  After midnight, the forums are a lot more quiet.  After all, even netizens have to sleep.  It is alright if I follow up on the netizen complaints the next day."

Early yesterday morning, a 3-1/2-minute video entitled <A group of young girls bully small kids> was on YouTube.  At the same time, a Facebook link was posted onto the Golden Forum giving the source of that video.  The link was later deleted, but more than 1,000 people left comments to condemn the young girls.

 

The quality of this video is very poor, because it was probably taken with a mobile phone camera at night in a park.  In the beginning, four or five young girls dressed in school uniforms are surrounding two children about 3 to 4 years old.  The faces and uniforms are not identifiable.  Someone was heard calling the kids "mushroom cunts."  When the kids objected, a young girl said, "Who has time to fool around with you?  You came over and fucking provoked us.  Are you stupid?"  The kids wanted to leave, but the young girls stopped them.  One young girl picked up a female kid and made her ride the slide.  When the kid objected strongly, the young girl yelled at her while her companions cheered loudly.

The young girls treated the female kid like a "toy."  They seized the "toy" from one another.  When one young girl grabbed the female kid, another said: "She is seizing my girl!"  Then one young girl was heard to say: "She is going to get her mother.  Tell everybody!"

The netizens condemned these young girls.  They even identified these young girls.  They said that the young girls are from a middle school in the Fanling district.  They posted their photos and mobile phone numbers on the Internet.  Our reporter called the numbers but nobody answered.

According to Hong Kong Social Services Association (Children and Adolescents) director Chan Kan-ming, the young girls were engaged in bullying because they did not obtain the consent of the kids' parents.  But Chan did not approve of the behavior of the netizens, because this was just more bullying extended onto the Internet.  Besides, it was impossible to verify the information about the participants.  Therefore, it cannot be excluded that the published information was used to bully someone else in revenge.

(South China Morning Post)  Cyber bullying common among schoolchildren   By Adrian Wan.  July 4, 2010.

As many as a third of secondary school students have fallen victim to cyber bullies, while one in five have admitted to abusing others online, a survey has found.

The Hong Kong Family Welfare Society, a non-governmental organisation that promotes family well-being, commissioned the Chinese University of Hong Kong to survey secondary school students on cyber bullying from December last year to February. More than 1,800 students responded and about a 30 per cent of those polled reported they had fallen victim to cyber bullying.

Close to 20 per cent of respondents said they had bullied others online. For instance, they had threatened, vilified, or insulted others or distributed private or indecent photographs of them.

In all cases, more boys than girls were involved. Spreading messages of hate was most common.

Zhongyang county is located in western Shangxi province.  This small county with a population of only several tens of thousands is located by the State Highway 209 in the Luliang mountains.  Further down south is Fangshan county, which became famous nationwide when the local party secretary Zhang Guobiao closed down all the cybercafes in the county several years ago.  But today Zhang Guobiao is the Luliang City People's Congress Standing Committee deputy chairman and the cybercafes of Fangshan county are back in business.

Meanwhile, the nine regular cybercafes in Zhongyang county, Shanxi province have been repeatedly closed by authorities for various reasons since 2007.

In 2007, the county public security bureau closed all the cybercafes for more than 2 months. 

During the 2008 university entrance exams, the Ministry of Culture closed the cybercafes for two days; during the 2008 Beijing Olympics, the public security bureau closed the cybercafes for one month; in November 2008, there was a fire in Luliang city and the public security bureau closed the cybercafes for more than 3 months. 

During the 2009 university entrance exams, the Ministry of Culture closed the cybercafes for two days; on Octover 27, the public security bureau closed the cybercafes for more than two months to prevent the spread of the H1N1 virus.

During the Two Congresses in 2010, the cybercafes were closed for several days; on June 2, 2010 the police came and applied tapes to the front doors.  The owners told the Southern Metropolis Daily reporter that, as usual, the police did not give them any written notice nor any date for re-opening.

Wei Xin is a worker at the Zhongyang Steel Factory.  He is still single and therefore has lots of spare time that he does not know how to spend.  There are no pubs in Zhongyang county and he could not afford to go to the only nightclub.  So he and his workmates like to go to cybercafes when they can chat and play games at 3 yuan per hour.

On June 2, Wei Xin stood in front of his regular cybercafe.  He was depressed to see the police tape across the front door.  He knocked on the backdoor and the owner told him that the place has been closed down.  He visited several other cybercafes and saw that police tapes across their front doors.  So Wei Xin realized that once again, Zhongyang county is cybercafe-less.

On July 1, Wei Xin told the Southern Metropolis Daily reporter: "Since I started going to cybercafes in 2008, there are several months each year when the cybercafes are closed."

These closures do not concern most of the citizens of Zhongyang county.  They are an irritation to the regular users.  But they mean much more to the cybercafe workers.

Cybercafe manager Yang Pei remembered the first closing in 2007.  "All the cybercafes were closed.  I had no job, so I went to Taiyuan and hung around for several months.  When the cybercafes re-opened in 2008, I came back and worked as a cybercafe manager again.  Then we had closings in 2008, 2009 and once again this June."

Yang Pei is fortunate because his boss has asked him to stay on each time since 2008.  So he at least has a job.  The other workers are not as fortunate, because they either stay home idle or have to find another job.

Yang Pei's boss is unhappy too.  He sees no reason why the public security bureau should close the cybercafes in order to prevent the spread of the H1N1 flu virus.  "Why didn't they close the restaurants?  the hotels?  the night clubs?  Why did they only close the cybercafes?"

Another cybercafe owner reviewed the operations for our reporter: "The Ministry of Culture gets several tens of thousands yuan per year; the Fire Department gets several tens of thousands; rent, water, electricity, wages, broadband usage ... they amount to 100,000 yuan per year.  We cooperate with the Ministry of Culture and close down the cybercafes several days a year during the university entrance exams.  Nevertheless the public security bureau shuts us down several months each year!  During those several months, we have zero revenue.  We have to hire people to guard the place.  The other fees still have to be paid.  The public security bureau never tells us when we can re-open.  If we don't do it sneakily, how do we put food on our tables?  We are legal cybercafes who have licences and pay taxes!"

The Zhongyang county public security bureau is only interested in closing cybercafes down; they do not tell these legally licensed cybercafes when they can re-open.  It is up to the cybercafe owners to figure out by themselves when it is safe to operate openly.

According to the investigation by our reporter, the nine cybercafes are owned by eight individuals.  Three out of these eight individuals have been detained while trying to "cross the river by feeling the stones on the riverbed."  What does that mean?  One cybercafe owner depicted the method to us: "The front door is still sealed by the police, but we let people come in through the back door.  We stake out the police station.  Whenever a large group of police officers come out of the station, we immediately call back to the cybercafe to tell them to clear out."

According to this cybercafe owner, there are other signs of a pending police raid.  "Sometimes, we see that users at the other cybercafes have come over to our place.  We would immediately close down.  This is because the other cybercafes because those other cybercafes are owned by people at the public security bureau and they know about the police raids beforehand."

According to an informed source, four of the eight cybercafe owners in Zhongyang county are public servants (either directly or indirectly), with three of them being with the public security bureau.  Our reporter could not confirm this allegation.  But the Zhongyang public security bureau confirmed that the "Free Space" cybercafe was owned by a police detective named Fu Dongxing.  Fu told our reporter that he sold his cybercafe several months after he started it.  The Fuyang County Ministry of Industry and Commerce confirmed to our reporter that "Free Space" was founded three years ago and is still operating.

When the Zhongyang public security bureau shuts down all cybercafes at the same time.  But some cybercafe owners still consider that there are two types among them.  Those without "background" are the ones who get detained for illegally operating.  Those with "background" are the ones who go back into operation openly even though no notice was given.

The "Leisure Cybercafe" is usually the last one to re-open.  The owner is a leader at the County Water Company.  He thinks that cybercafes are closed often because of serious violations, such as letting under-aged users stay overnight.  "When a cybercafe violates the regulations, they come and close down every cybercafe.  They don't care whether your particular cybercafe had violated the regulations or not."  Even so, he was critical about how the public security bureau do not explain when the cybercafes are to close and/or open.

Another cybercafe owner said to our reporter: "If a particular cybercafe has a problem, they can close it down or impose fines.  How can they close down everything?  Besides, this is a matter under the Ministry of Culture.  What has this to do with the public security bureau?"

In late June, the cybercafes received notices that they can re-open.  This was the first time ever that they received such a notice.  Several cybercafe owners attributed this to the fact that the Southern Metropolis Daily reporter had inquired the public security bureau about when the cybercafes can re-open.  "If you didn't ask them, they wouldn't tell us.  This is the first time ever.  In the past, we were shut down the longest during the winter.  We don't know if we will be shut down this coming winter."

Our reporter asked the Zhongyang county public security bureau director Yang Jiaoping about why the cybercafes are closed for extensive periods of time each year.  Director Yang asked: "What do you mean?"  Then he refused to take telephone calls from our reporter.

Yesterday at 11:50am, a netizen uploaded a photo onto a Hangzhou-based Internet forum.  The title of the post was <Dare to expose "the collapse of an entire residential building in Hangzhou">.  This photo, which was taken with a mobile phone camera, showed a five- or six-storey building falling off at a 45 degree angle.  The photo carries sufficient details that it was unlikely to be fabricated.  The whole incident reminds people of the toppled building in Shanghai last year.

The text that accompanied that photo says: "I went to meet with a client in Binjiang district a couple of days ago.  I opened the window on the 26th floor and found that a building in the community had fallen over.  I was shocked.  Those evil-hearted real estate developers dare to build these kinds of buildings for common folks like us to live in.  I have to expose them.  Please forgive me for the lack of clarity in the photo, because I took it with a mobile phone camera from a distance.  The location of the collapsed building is at Jiangnan Avenue and Jianghan Road."

Collapsed building?  Binjiang district, Hangzhou city? ...  All of a sudden, the Internet forum was broiling over.  "Did anyone live there?"  "Which developer?"  "How can the building be ripped right out of its foundation?  Is this the second coming of the Shanghai incident?"  This Internet post then got re-posted at the forums around China, including Huasheng Forum, Tianya Forum, etc.

Among the shock and anger, there were still some doubts.  Apart from this single Internet forum post, there was no other information about the incident.  Yet this photo was hard to refute.

One hour after the post appeared, our reporter contacted the netizen "wangran" who uploaded that photo.  He confirmed that he saw it with his own eyes and then he took the photo.  "I checked the location on the map.  It should be inside Zhongqing Gardens."

Our reporter immediately rushed to the scene.  On the way, he had two scenarios in mind: First, the building was inhabited, in which case chaos would reign now.  Second, the building was still under construction, in which case the scene would be sealed off and unapproachable.

But when our reporter got to Zhongqing Gardens, he was surprised by what he saw.  Like many other such communities, two security guards stood leisurely at the guard post while people walked around serenely.

Could the reporter have gone to the wrong place?  He took out the photo taken by "wangran" and compared it against the actual buildings.  He finally decided that the so-called "collapsed building" was Buildings 32 and 33.  But those two buildings were standing intact right now.

It turned out that the photo was showing an optical illusion.

These two buildings were unlike the surrounding buildings in terms of architecture.  The other buildings were built in the shape of rectangular oblongs, but these two buildings were in ladder shape with the ground level having the largest area and the top level having the smallest area.  This creates the illusion that the building was tilting over on that side.  "wangran" was looking from high above and got the impression that the building had fallen over at 45 degree angle.

When Zhongqing Gardens was completed in 2003, there were 69 residential buildings containing 2,518 apartment units.  Apart from Buildings 32 and 33, all the buildings were regularly shaped.  So why were these two buildings so special?  According to the real estate developer, "This type of 'receding tiers' architecture is unique in that the lowest level has the largest area, with the area decreasing as the level goes up.  For developers, this is not an efficient style of architecture.  Very few buildings in China are built in this manner.  However, the 'receding tiers' can bring a sense of wider space in a community.  Since Buildings 32 and 33 were located near the community entrance, they were designed in this form."

An open letter to the mayor of Tianmen city, Hubei province

Esteemed Mayor:

I apologize for interrupting your very busy schedule, especially at a time when your appointment as Party Secretary is about to be announced publicly just when an 80-year-old petitioner leaped to his death in Tianmen city.

The tragic suicide of 80-year-old Tianmen resident Liu Binpu was an unprecedented event!

During my news gathering activities in Tianmen, I learned that Liu Binpu had been petitioning for several decades.  Two years ago, he tried to stab a Petition Office cadre and was sentenced to three years in prison.  I was quite astonished and confounded.  First of all, Liu may be the oldest murderer in history.  Secondly, he may also be the oldest petitioner in China as well as the oldest petitioner who committed suicide.  What did this old and frail man aim a fruit knife against a cadre?  Why did this senior citizen who is about to reach the end of his life commit suicide by leaping off a building?

My shock was shared by many Tianmen citizens.  Yet during my interviews, many Tianmen officials told me: Liu Binpu was a troublemaker; Liu Binpu was a mental case; etc.  Their comments were laced with jokes which they justified.  Basically, they were saying: "Liu Binpu is neither your dad nor my mother, so why should I care that he committed suicide?"

I am perplexed by why the Tianmen Party Committee/Government were unable to deal with this old troublemaking petitioner over several decades?  Among the materials provided by the relatives of Liu Binpu, I found many letters addressed to former and current city leaders (including yourself), but I did not see anyone replying.

Perhaps I am being too emotionally sensitive.  But the complacency and rationality are not good examples to learn from.  It is not easy to be cold-hearted unless you have decades of harsh training.

I conducted interviews over several days, but my report was not published.  As a reporter who cares about his responsibility and a human being who has a conscience, I feel discouraged many times.  So many people were lobbying on your behalf, with almost the identical reasons: you ar still on public notice, you are a good person, you are an honest person ...

I have been tormented over the past few days.  I am a straightshooter.  I care about my professional image.  If I have something to say, I want to say it.  If my news report cannot be published for now, I want to say what is on my mind some other way.  So I am resorting to writing this letter.  I honestly hope that you are the good man and the honest person that your many friends say you are.  I hope that you are a good official and leader.  I hope that you can bring greater progress when you become the Tianmen city party secretary.  Therefore, I will continue to monitor what you do.  This is being responsible to you and helping you to do your job.  This is also being responsible to the people and officials of Tianmen.  I hope that you will support our work.

I have attached an envelop from the Tianmen Department of Health along with this letter.  There is a certain sum of cash enclosed, which was forced into my hands by the Tianmen city publicity department for the purpose of "taking care" of this reporter.  The envelop is being returned unopened.  Please forward the money inside to the family of Liu Binpu or others who are in need of money.  Let me add that not all reporters can be bought off with money, because character cannot be measured in terms of money.

I wish you well in your work!  I also pray that the people of Tianmen will lead rich and dignified lives under the leadership of the soon-to-arrive party secretary!

Wu Xinqiao, reporter for the Legal System Daily.

Late night June 30, 2010

On the morning of June 26, Ziran village, Chaobao cave, Chetianwan village, Zhongtiao town, Ziyuan county, Guangxi village, 78-year-old Wang Qingbai stood in front of an excavator to confront the operator named Cheng.  During the ensuing argument, Cheng started the bulldozer and drove forward.  Wang's leg got caught and the onlookers called out for Cheng to stop.  But the bulldozer continued to roll and Wang was crushed.  Afterwards, Cheng fled the scene.  Later, he turned himself to the police and is under criminal detention.

On the morning of June 27, our reporter went to the scene.  According to eyewitness Wang Limei: "At around 9am on June 26, Wang Qingbai's son was operating an excavator.  Five people came up to stop him.  Meanwhile Cheng was working with his excavator.  I, Wang Qingbai and two other went up to Cheng's excavator to reason with him about letting Wang's son get on with his work.  During the argument, Cheng started the excavator.  Wang's foot was caught underneath the tire tread.  I immediately tried to pull Wang out but I couldn't.  We rushed over to the excavator cab and told Cheng to stop.  But he ignored us and continued to drive forward and run over Wang.  Then he stopped the excavator, jumped out of the cab and sprinted away.  We were not able to intercept him.  Wang died immediately."

According to Wang Qingbai's son, a boss from the outside invested money to build a marble-processing factory.  He and two persons invested in an excavator and joined in the construction project with the approval of the factory owner.  On June 13, his excavator was ready to enter the construction site.  But the excavator belonging to Chetianwan Village deputy party secretary Cheng Peng blocked his way.  Several days later, he opened up another road to enter the construction site.  On the morning of June 21, he began work when more than twenty people armed with machete and steel pipes blocked his bulldozer and stopped him from working.  Meanwhile Cheng Peng's excavator and another excavator belonging to a relative of Cheng Peng continued to work.  Wang's son called the police and the men fled before the police arrived.  That afternoon, the Zhongfeng town government met with both parties and told them that both can work.

On the morning of June 26, Wang's operator was about to begin work when five or six men came to interfere, throwing rocks.  So he stopped.  But meanwhile Cheng Peng and his relative were still running their excavators.  "So my father went over to question Cheng Peng's nephew.  He ended up being killed by the excavator."

Our reporter interviewed Cheng Peng.  He said that on June 13, work had not begun at the construction site.  So his excavator was parked on the road and blocked Wang's excavator.  On June 21, some people armed with knives showed up at the construction site, but Cheng Peng was not present and therefore is unsure about what happened.  As for the death of Wang Qingbai on the morning of June 26, Cheng Peng thinks that it was an accident.

(Sina.com

The Hong Kong "young model" Debby Tsang and four other "young models" are releasing a photo album.  The Hong Kong Book Fair has announced that the young models will not be allowed to hold autograph sessions because they want the event to be suitable for persons of all ages.

A alternate promotion, a video featuring Debby Tsang was posted onto YouTube.  In this 39-second video, Debby Tsang is walking down the street towards the camera.  A man is shown walking towards her with his back to the camera.  When they got near each other, the man suddenly ripped Debby's shirt off and ran away.  Debby was left sitting on the ground with tears coming down and wearing only her bra.

On June 30, the Hong Kong Women's Centers Association made a statement: "This video is realistic and portrays psychological threats to women.  This video totally fails to realize that this kind of sexual violence (for consumerist purpose) can create bad influence in society."  The association wants this video to be classified as an "indecent article" and thus prevented from being circulated any further.

This video has been deleted by the original poster.  Unfortunately many other copies can still be found.

(The Sun)

Although the video has been pilloried, Debby's manager Sunny still supports it: "Since we are already imitating mosatsu anyway, we might as well as also copy the Japanese video films about ripping clothes off women randomly in the streets!  They won't let us have autograph sessions, so we have to come up with our own gimmicks.  We will be selling t-shirts in the Mong Kok pedestrian street soon.  Those t-shirts will have the photos on them.  We have plenty of supporters."  Debby said innocently: "I only wanted to promote the photo album.  I don't understand why the video had to be deleted."

 

Q1.  How do you feel about the passage of the constitutional reform package?
51%: Happy
28%: Disappointed
21%: No opinion

Q2. Who is the biggest winner when the constitutional reform package?
42%: The people of Hong Kong
19%: The Hong Kong Special Administrative Region government
14%: The Central Government of China
  6%: The moderate pan-democrats
  3%: The pro-establishment faction
  1%: The extremist pan-democrats
  4%: Others
11%: No opinion

Q3. Do you think that the passage of the constitutional reform package is helpful towards universal suffrage in Hong Kong?
55%: Yes
29%: No
16%: No opinion

Q4. Do you think that the passage of the constitutional reform package helps to promote social harmony in Hong Kong?
47%: Yes
38%: No
15%: No opinion

Q5. Did the passage of the constitutional reform package change your support of the moderate pan-democrats?
36%: Increase
31%: The same
22%: Decrease
11%: No opinion

Q6. Did the passage of the constitutional reform package change your support of the extremist pan-democrats?
17%: Increase
33%: The same
39%: Decrease
11%: No opinion

Q7. Did the passage of the constitutional reform package change your support of the pro-establishment political groups?
24%: Increase
48%: The same
14%: Decrease
14%: No opinion

Q8. How do you feel about the future of the development of democracy in Hong Kong?
44%: Optimistic
33%: Pessimistic
23%: No opinion

(Southern Metropolis Daily)

"Director Ping has been subjected to human flesh search.  Someone is parading with a placard to demand Ping be ousted.  He is getting harassing phone calls; he has become absent-minded; he dares not go home; his wife is crying; his son cannot attend school."  Recently, CCTV host Li Xiaomeng who had been covering the Jiangxi flood wrote on her microblog yesterday.

Yesterday morning, CCTV host Li Xiaomeng wrote on her microblog.  After the CCTV news program <24 Hours> was aired on June 21, the CCTV host Qiu Qiming was lauded by netizens while director Ping Qijun was criticized by netizens.  Because Ping did not directly respond to Qiu's question about the safety of the masses down river and preferred to go extensively into the "important directives" from the various levels of government/party leaders, many netizens thought that Ping was a sycophant who only knew to spout platitudes for his superiors.

As for "someone is parading with a placard to demand Ping be ousted," it came from the Internet post <Brother Number 5 in Nanchang parades with placard to demand the ouster of sycophant government official Ping Qijun!>.  There is a photo which shows a young man walking in a Nanchang street and carrying a placard which said: "Ping Qijun, you ought to leave your post immediately: Jiangxi does not want sycophant government officials."

"He looked wan and sallow the last few days.  People think that he was at fault, especially his family."  A colleague of Ping Qijun told our reporter.  Over the past few days, Ping has received many anonymous phone calls.  "His wife had no idea what he did.  She could only cry at home.  The son does not dare to go to school because people are talking."

"He was only quoting assorted statements that had been collected at the time.  It does not represent what he thinks."  This colleague name Li said that anyone would have presented the situation this way.  "Ping did nothing wrong.  The incident had just taken place.  The situation was unclear.  We also wanted to find out what was going on, but communication had not taken place yet.  What can we say?  We could not even guess."

Jiangxi Province Disaster Prevention Command Center office director Zhu Shuigui also said that many netizens did not understand the situation.  "At the time, the levee break had just taken place.  It was very nervous at the scene.  Without any data from the field, nobody could have answered any questions."  He said that Ping was asked to handle the interview because he had done so many times before.

Zhu Shuigui said that the Internet controversy will not affect Ping's job.  "As far as the leaders are concerned, his work is very good for now."

"Everybody is concerned with justice and good/evil on the Internet.  I ask myself how likely I am to answer this way if I were director Ping?"  Li Xiaomeng wrote that on her microblog.  Clearly, she disapproves of how the Internet is targeting Ping Qijun personally.

Li Xiaomeng's microblog post has been widely disseminated and commented upon.  So far, there are more than 800 comments.  Some netizens were understanding and sympathetic towards Ping Qijun.  "Director Ping said something quite normal at the wrong place at the wrong time."  "I am certain that Director Ping was reading from a printed document which has been reviewed and approved by various leaders."

Other netizens were commented on the Internet storm itself.  "We should deal with the issues themselves and not disrupt people's personal lives."  "The anger at certain unreasonable things is being laid down at one representative person.  We should be angry; we should be making criticisms; we should shake certain people out of their complacency.  But this 'representative' did not abuse his position; he was merely incompetent or some such.  Making personal attacks and judgments on him is going too far."

"I never imagined that this could happen."  Qi Qiming said about the human flesh search on Ping Qijun.  This was not the reason why he interrupted Ping twice during the program segment.  "This was what a news worker should be doing.  Even if I was speaking to a colleague by telephone, I would have interrupted him the same way if he was not answering the question.  This was a live broadcast and we cannot waste public resources."

He told our reporter that he can understand why netizens were talking about Ping Qijun's performance.  "This shows that people are dissatisfied with how official statements must mention the leaders and they want things to change."

But he was also unequivocal in opposing human flesh search and personal attacks.  "It is irrational and intolerant to ferret out people's family histories with human flesh search at the slightest provocation."  Qiu Qiming had been the target of Internet criticisms before and he clearly had a deeper understanding about it: People have the freedom to discuss and criticize social phenomena, but this freedom cannot infringe upon the legal rights (of Ping Qijun and others like him).  In the absence of relevant laws about personal attacks through the Internet, these types of Internet "typhoons" can seriously bring harm to the principals and their families.

"There is no need to key on just one particular individual."  Qiu Qiming said that the important thing is that our society should be able to make rational analyses and reflections on these kinds of phenomena.


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