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Censorship Entertainment Games

China Bans Game Recognizing Taiwan Independence 892

Posted by Zonk
from the that's-one-way-to-get-your-point-across dept.
OhioJoe writes "MSNBC is reporting that China has banned a soccer game that depicts Taiwan as independent. Violators are threatened with $1200 fines. From the article: "The game, 'Soccer Manager 2005', contained content that harmed China's sovereignty and territorial integrity and violated Chinese law, the Xinhua news agency reported on Tuesday."
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China Bans Game Recognizing Taiwan Independence

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  • by Anonymous Coward
    "China Bans X" or something similar.

    Thanks.
  • hmm (Score:3, Insightful)

    by DaFallus (805248) on Wednesday December 08, 2004 @02:00PM (#11033866)
    "People's" Republic indeed...
  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday December 08, 2004 @02:01PM (#11033874)
    The Falun Gong Tigers...
  • Huh? (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Luigi30 (656867)
    What's the harm in a game that has Taiwan listed as a country? Nobody's going to say "hey, Taiwan's independent! Kill China!" because it's listed in one lousy game.
    • Re:Huh? (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Omniscientist (806841)
      The game, "Soccer Manager 2005", contained content that harmed China's sovereignty and territorial integrity and violated Chinese law, the Xinhua news agency reported on Tuesday

      The article answered that quite nicely. China's government is very sensitive about territorial issues.

      • Re:Huh? (Score:5, Insightful)

        by MonkeyCookie (657433) on Wednesday December 08, 2004 @02:24PM (#11034170)
        Sometimes it just seems like the leaders of some government are just childlike and whiny. OK, so some people don't see Taiwan as part of China: get over it you bunch of babies.

        Are they really that incapable of being exposed to a different view of the world? It's not like a stupid video game representing Taiwan as its own country is going to make China break up or something. Taiwan really *is* an independent country, whether the People's Republic of China likes it or not. These are the realities people: stop sticking your heads in the sand.

        I hate the stupid ultrasensitive crap that some governments (or even societies) get all upset about. Pretty much every country has some minor stupid thing they get all uptight about.

        Argentina get all pissy about the Falkland Islands, which are hardly worth the trouble.

        The United States seems to spit fire if anyone talks about it stifling democracy in other countries or waging war for reasons other than "freedom", or burning flags (which causes harm to so many people!).

        India and Pakistan stop thinking rationally every time the subject of Kashmir comes up.

        Turkey frothes at the mouth every time the Kurds are mentioned.

        Some things just aren't as important as people seem to think they are. It's time to grow up, it's time to calm down.
        • Re:Huh? (Score:3, Insightful)

          by log0n (18224)
          Not to mention... Israel and Palestine with the Gaza strip.
        • Re:Huh? (Score:5, Insightful)

          by Chris Burke (6130) on Wednesday December 08, 2004 @03:01PM (#11034685) Homepage
          Taiwan really *is* an independent country, whether the People's Republic of China likes it or not. These are the realities people: stop sticking your heads in the sand.

          As soon as Taiwan's President can say that without being attacked by the mainland, you'll be right.

          • Re:Huh? (Score:3, Insightful)

            by CodeBuster (516420)
            He could say it right now and the United States would be forced to either abandon Taiwan to its fate and renege on its treaty obligation or we declare war on the People's Republic of China over their invasion of Taiwan. Given the endless saber rattling of the Chinese and their unpredictable leadership a war with China sometime in the next 30 years is practically inevitable anyway. We should coordinate with Taiwan so that when the DO declare independence then we will be ready for the People's Liberation Army
        • Re:Huh? (Score:4, Insightful)

          by StateOfTheUnion (762194) on Wednesday December 08, 2004 @03:56PM (#11035293) Homepage
          Taiwan really *is* an independent country, whether the People's Republic of China likes it or not.

          Uh . . . in a word, "No."

          It could perhaps be said that Taiwan is de facto independent, but not truly independent. Taiwan has never declared its independence from China; only 4 countries in the world recognize the Taiwanese government (officially . . . try to find the Taiwanese embassy in the US. It doesn't exist. There is an unofficial non-profit that represents Taiwan in the US, but it is not a recognized diplomatic mission). Taiwan has no seat in the UN.

          However, Taiwan has its own currency, government, military, and trade relationships . . . and a defense treaty with the USA.

          Taiwan is in limbo . . . somewhere between independence and subjagation . . . with between 200 and 300 missles pointed at it from the other side of the Taiwan strait.

        • Re:Huh? (Score:5, Insightful)

          by golgotha007 (62687) on Wednesday December 08, 2004 @04:23PM (#11035640)
          ...Argentina get all pissy about the Falkland Islands, which are hardly worth the trouble....

          and on that note, a word of advice to any foreigners enjoying themselves in a pub in downtown London (with too much to drink):

          It's a bad idea to suggest to a crowd of Brits that England should just get the hell out of Ireland. I mean, why not make it simple and just let each country have their own island, right?

          All joking aside, nobody found it funny and I was pushed down several times and nearly beaten up until the doorman pulled me out of there.

          As an American, I really didn't realize that what I said would illicit such a violent response.

          The following day, I asked some of my friends (and their parents) why it was such a sensitive issue, but they just rolled their eyes at me with disgust. Finally, google was my friend and I finally learned how deep into British culture this religious clash actually goes. Scary.

          • Re:Huh? (Score:3, Interesting)

            by salmacis2 (643788)
            Perhaps you'd have been a bit more tactful if your country had been the target of IRA bombs?
          • Re:Huh? (Score:4, Interesting)

            by Triskele (711795) on Wednesday December 08, 2004 @06:28PM (#11036740)
            It's a bad idea to suggest to a crowd of Brits that England should just get the hell out of Ireland. I mean, why not make it simple and just let each country have their own island, right?

            While you're not entirely wrong, as an American you are really really not allowed to say this. Why? Cos Americans funded a lot of terrorism against the British mainland (NORAID) and we really haven't forgiven a lot of you for that. And in the current climate with America being all "ooh terrorists are threatening us, we must pin down the whole world", we're just not in the mood for that talk coming from you, ok? Particularly when all protestations to your government to cease funding the IRA was met with a deaf ear.

            Think what your reaction would be if someone in a bar suggested that the middle east was none of your business and you deserved the Sept 11 attack for interfering in other people's business.

            • Re:Huh? (Score:3, Insightful)

              by kelnos (564113)
              I think you're merely proving the parent poster's point.

              I'm 23. I had nothing to do with funding Northern Ireland terrorists, and I wasn't in a position to do anything about it. So you're saying that if I were to express an unpopular opinion, it's all right if I'm physically attacked?

              Essentially, you're saying that it's ok to physically beat someone up for expressing an unpopular opinion. From how it sounds, it seems like the parent was almost killed by a group of idiot Brits. That's just unacceptab
              • Re:Huh? (Score:3, Insightful)

                by Triskele (711795)
                So you're saying that if I were to express an unpopular opinion, it's all right if I'm physically attacked?

                No. I was only trying to explain why the reaction over here can be so extreme. Remember it was mostly London pubs in which those NORAID funded bombs went off. I should have pointed out that I don't hold such opinions myself.

                From how it sounds, it seems like the parent was almost killed by a group of idiot Brits. That's just unacceptable. That's beyond unacceptable: it's reprehensible and inhuman.

    • Re:Huh? (Score:5, Interesting)

      by WARM3CH (662028) on Wednesday December 08, 2004 @02:10PM (#11033996)
      Well, some countries are very sensitive about such issues. Even people can be very sensitive about it. Take this recent example: You know that some Arab countries insist on using the name "Arabian Gulf" to call whan we know as "Persian Gulf". Recently, after mentioning this second name in some national geography publications, a large group of Persian weblogs and sites helped making a google bomb. Try searching for "Arabian Gulf" in google and select the first results and see it for yourself.
    • The whole Taiwan/China thing is an ego trip. So any news related to it is part of the ego tip.

      What's retarded is that FIFA 2000 had Taiwan in it, too...I took them to the World Cup.
    • Re:Huh? (Score:2, Informative)

      by INeededALogin (771371)
      What's the harm in a game that has Taiwan listed as a country?

      Because most of China's leaders keep legitimacy by maintaining that Taiwan is part of the China still. To lose Taiwan would almost certainly lead to a Communist over-throw in China.

      Also, if Taiwan declares Independence the by-product would be war. Right now, China has an awful lot of weapons pointed at Taiwan and they have yearly drills on how to invade Taiwan.

      So, the best thing for China and Taiwan is to maintain the status quo. Taiwa
  • by lottameez (816335) on Wednesday December 08, 2004 @02:02PM (#11033893)
    Great Britain has banned all references to the "United States" and insists that any software produced in "the colonies" or elsewhere reflect this view.
    • For what it's worth, the United States (via Powell's statements in October 2004) (wikipedia [wikipedia.org], google news [google.com]) believes that Taiwan should remain part of China rather than becoming independent. So while I appreciate the parent post's humor, it's not historically accurate... It's not as simple as China being long in a state of delusion.
  • Nothing for you to see here. Please move along.

    Yes, I can imagine that's what proprietors of Chinese franchises of EB Games [ebgames.com] will be saying when customers come inquiring for Soccer Manager 2005.
  • ...you can make some pathetic attempt to hold 'em back in the virtual world.
  • by TeleoMan (529859) on Wednesday December 08, 2004 @02:03PM (#11033908)
    Seriously, what's next? Banning references to an independent Tibe- >>
  • by Anonymous Coward

    ...UK doesn't ban a soccer game that shows England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland as separate entities...

    • UK doesn't ban a soccer game that...

      Hmmm... I could never see England banning a soccer game. Football maybe, but not soccer... And imaging the hooligans if England banned a football game?
  • Here, I thought our "leaders" had too much fscking free time.
    Thanks, China.
  • by ch-chuck (9622) on Wednesday December 08, 2004 @02:03PM (#11033923) Homepage
    is it any wonder every factory owner want to built there - no pesky problems with free thinking laborers, just govt controlled menial units toiling away for emporer and Wal Mart.
  • by nebaz (453974) on Wednesday December 08, 2004 @02:04PM (#11033935)
    This is still a country with a Communist government (modified, granted, but still not democratic) who has never recognized the independence of Taiwan, who
    blocks its citizens from portions of the internet at the national level, and brutally rolled over demonstrators in Tienaman (sp) square. What do you think they would go?

    The worst part of the whole thing is that China is a capitalist's dream, cheap labor, who have no chance to redress grievances. No wonder we can't compete.

    To those who say that economic capitalism leads to democracy, we'll just have to wait and see. I'm not holding my breath.
    • That's a mischaracterizatoin of capitalism. A Capatalism is a free-market type. We'd like cheap labor, with unions and market forces addressing grievences. For instance, we're perfectly content with EA employees crying to the media and game purchasers boycotting EA in response.
      • by nebaz (453974)
        Unfettered capitalism, without any government intervention, was similar to what you saw in the US in the 19th century. It tends to result (over time) in child labor, 7 day work weeks for the lower class, and the rise of fewer and fewer companies. The tendency now is more toward that direction. Unions aren't a natural function of capitalism, they are the result of worker exploitation over a number of years. Without legal protections, unions would be broken, violently. They may seem bureaucratic now, but
    • by Tackhead (54550)
      > This is still a country with a Communist government (modified, granted, but still not democratic) who has never recognized the independence of Taiwan, who blocks its citizens from portions of the internet at the national level, and brutally rolled over demonstrators in Tienaman (sp) square. What do you think they would go?

      This is a country with a modernizing government who has never recognized the breakaway rebellion in the Taiwanese province, who protects its citizens from superstition on the Intern

      • by NardofDoom (821951) on Wednesday December 08, 2004 @03:40PM (#11035134)
        Since you're an expert, answer one question: Why should any country who believes in the human rights of freedom of speech, religion, assembly and press have anything to do with a nation that does not? It seems to me that the US and Europe claim to support human rights, but only when it doesn't hurt profits.

        And China is far from sustainable: The pollution problems there are rampant and growing worse.

    • sigh (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Scrameustache (459504) on Wednesday December 08, 2004 @02:35PM (#11034310) Homepage Journal
      a Communist government (modified, granted, but still not democratic)

      Would you PLEASE, for the love of all that is good and holy, learn the freakin' difference between "communist" and "totalitarian".

      A country can be communist AND totalitarian, but that doesn't make those two things interchangeable.

      The worst part of the whole thing is that China is a capitalist's dream, cheap labor, who have no chance to redress grievances. No wonder we can't compete.
      To those who say that economic capitalism leads to democracy, we'll just have to wait and see. I'm not holding my breath.


      See, China is moving away from communism, but not from totalitarianism. You've noticed that capitalism doesn't magically bring about the end of totalitarian states: Please adjust your vocabulary accordingly.

      • Re:sigh (Score:3, Insightful)

        by hackstraw (262471) *
        Would you PLEASE, for the love of all that is good and holy, learn the freakin' difference between "communist" and "totalitarian".

        Hold on. We have been fed this "communism" crap for around 60 years now, no need to get hostile over someone listening to the news and reading the newspaper for ones whole life filled with FUD and then expect informed opinions to be made.

        Here in America, we have been taught that democracy == capitolism and that communism != democracy. Democracy == good, therefore communism !
    • by Rei (128717)
      > brutally rolled over demonstrators in Tienaman
      > (sp) square

      You know, I'm not very fond of China's Human Rights Record, but people need to stop citing this ad infinitum. The Chinese could just as well talk about how we killed our own citizens during the Kent State protests during the Vietnam war. The scale at Tiananmen square was clearly far larger; however, the protests were far larger as well (at their height, over a million people strong).

      Furthermore, the Chinese did not "roll over" protesters
      • Interresting post, however, if I may make the following comment on your style:

        The main song sung during the protests was "The Internationale"

        I had to read that sentence 3 or 4 times before I stopped trying to interpret "main song sung" as a chinese name.
        It's trivial, and somewhat silly, but it made that paragraph much harder to understand than it should have been : )
      • Not the same (Score:3, Insightful)

        by thoolie (442789)
        As I am sure many have pointed out;

        Kent State = 4 dead
        Tiananment Square = Hundereds to thousands dead (http://news.bbc.co.uk/onthisday/hi/dates/stories / june/4/newsid_2496000/2496277.stm)

        USA = Can talk about (even make kick ass rock songs about) Kent State
        China (PRC) = Still can't talk, let alone read about it on the internet

        The point is, there is a difference. China is improving...slowly. But please do not compare 1989 China to 1969 USA. If they were the same, a whole bunch more people would have died
  • China: Giving new meaning to the phrase 'It's just a game.'

    This isn't really suprising considering China's (belligerent) stance on anything and all things Taiwainese. Last weeks West Wing had a good example of these types of 'affronts' (although on a bigger scale) towards China regarding Taiwan.
    • Only in the US... (Score:2, Insightful)

      by gosand (234100)
      China: Giving new meaning to the phrase 'It's just a game.' This isn't really suprising considering China's (belligerent) stance on anything and all things Taiwainese. Last weeks West Wing had a good example of these types of 'affronts' (although on a bigger scale) towards China regarding Taiwan.

      Sigh. Only in America would someone reference a fictional TV show as a source of information on something like this.

      • Sorry (Score:4, Insightful)

        by paranode (671698) on Wednesday December 08, 2004 @02:40PM (#11034403)
        Sigh. Only in America would someone reference a fictional TV show as a source of information on something like this.

        Sorry, wrong. Practically every country in the world gets everything they know about the US from fictional TV programs. They see an episode of Cops or The Bachelor and then they think we are a brutal police state where everybody gets married on TV shows.

        Anyways, back to topic, there's not much you can really make up about Chinese brutality and censorship because chances are they've done most all of it. Alas, the US just makes a better target for these totalitarian and ignorance jokes than China, regardless of reality.

  • by glrotate (300695) on Wednesday December 08, 2004 @02:07PM (#11033972) Homepage
    http://www.nytimes.com/2004/12/01/opinion/01kristo f.html?hp=&pagewanted=print&position=

    China's Donkey Droppings
    By NICHOLAS D. KRISTOF

    For the last century, the title of "most important place in the world" has belonged to the United States, but that role seems likely to shift in this century to China.

    So what are China's new leaders, Hu Jintao and Wen Jiabao, really like? Are they visionaries who are presiding over the greatest explosion of wealth the world has ever known? Or are they ruthless thugs who persecute Christians, Falun Gong adherents, labor leaders and journalists in a desperate attempt to maintain their dictatorship?

    There's some evidence for both propositions, and they are probably both true to some degree.

    When Mr. Hu and Mr. Wen rose to the helm of the Communist Party two years ago, many Chinese hoped they would bring a new openness to a nation that is dynamic economically but stagnant intellectually. Instead, China has become more repressive.

    The repression has now engulfed a member of The New York Times's family. Zhao Yan, a researcher for the Beijing bureau of The Times, has been detained by the authorities since September and is not allowed to communicate with his family or lawyers.

    Mr. Zhao is accused of leaking state secrets, a very serious charge that could lead to a decade in prison. China's government may believe that he was behind the September scoop by The Times's Beijing bureau chief, Joseph Kahn, that China's former leader, Jiang Zemin, was about to retire from his last formal position.

    While The Times's policy is, wisely, never to comment on the sources of articles, my own private digging indicates that Mr. Zhao was not the source for that scoop. He is innocent of everything except being a fine journalist who, before joining The Times, wrote important articles in the Chinese press about corruption.

    (In fairness, sending journalists to prison for doing their job is not an exclusively Chinese phenomenon. Several American journalists - Jim Taricani of NBC, Judith Miller of this newspaper and Matthew Cooper of Time - may be sent to U.S. prisons in the next month or two for refusing to reveal their sources.)

    Mr. Zhao's case is depressingly similar to that of another Chinese journalist, Jiang Weiping. He is serving a six-year sentence for "revealing state secrets," even though his real crime was exposing corruption.

    "China has changed so much economically, but not politically," Jiang Weiping's wife, Li Yanling, told me. "It's a puzzle to me."

    The authorities ordered Ms. Li to keep quiet about her husband's arrest, and detained her when she didn't. The couple's daughter, now 15, was traumatized at losing first her father and then her mother to the Chinese prison system. When Ms. Li was finally released, the daughter called her constantly from school to make sure that she had not been arrested again.

    Mr. Zhao's arrest is just the latest in a broad crackdown in China. The Committee to Protect Journalists reports that 42 journalists are now in prison in China, more than in any other country.

    "There was a period of openness, a period of hope, when the new leaders first came to power," said Jiao Guobiao, a journalism professor at Beijing University. "But now they've consolidated power, and everything has closed up again."

    Mr. Jiao should know. He wrote an essay this year denouncing censorship, and it was immediately censored. Now the government has banned Mr. Jiao from teaching.

    I've felt this cooling as well. I was planning to visit China this month, but the government has declined to give me a visa. It's the first time I've been refused, and the State Security Ministry may have worried that I would write a column about its unjust imprisonment of Mr. Zhao.

    I love China, and I share its officials' distaste for those who harm it. That's why I'm angry that hard-liners in Beijing are presenting China to the world as repressive, fragile, ty
    • > China now dazzles visitors with luxury skyscrapers, five-star hotels and modern freeways. This boom is real and spectacular, but for China to be an advanced nation it needs not only spaceships, but also freedom.
      >
      > Otherwise, all that dazzle is just a mirage. The Chinese leaders might recall an old peasant expression, "Lu fen dan'r, biaomian'r guang." It means, "On the outside, even donkey droppings gleam."

      So, um, you really can polish a turd?

  • by kusanagi374 (776658) on Wednesday December 08, 2004 @02:08PM (#11033974)
    This is not an isolated case. Back when Windows 95 was released, Microsoft had problems in India because the timezone worldmap (when setting date & time) wouldn't highlight Kashmir as part of India. To deal with that problem, they just removed country highlighting for good.

    They'll probably just release an updated version of the game without Taiwan and move along.
  • by TooMuchEspressoGuy (763203) on Wednesday December 08, 2004 @02:09PM (#11033988)
    Today the United States announced that they, too, are banning "Soccer Management 2005" on the grounds that it recognizes Canada as a separate country, when it is *obviously* just part of the United States.
  • War on China (Score:5, Insightful)

    by oexeo (816786) on Wednesday December 08, 2004 @02:10PM (#11034001)
    (Disclaimer: This is not a troll, I really think it's on-topic, and worth discussion)

    Please remind why America is not at war with China? My knowledge on this subject is limited, but my checklist (based on the precedent set by the "justifications" for the war on Iraq) suggests that they should be:

    (X) Totalitarian government
    (X) Autocracy government
    (X) Possesses Weapons of Mass Destruction
    (X) No human rights
    (X) Unstable, Irresponsible leadership
    (X) Inhumane treatment of its people
    (X) Government oppression and censorship

    If these are the valid reasons, could someone please explain why America is not at war with China?
    • Umm. Is money an adequate explanation? There's a reason China continues to be declared "Most Favored Nation" with regard to trade.
      • While money is behind China's MFN status, do bear in mind that it's not exclusive or anything. Most Favored simply means that no one else can be more favored -- not that others cannot be equally favored. This means that we can't offer Pottsylvania better trading terms, or that if we do, we must also offer them to China (and our other MFN trading partners) in order to maintain parity.
    • Re:War on China (Score:3, Insightful)

      by DoctorPepper (92269)
      Please remind why America is not at war with China?

      Because they:

      (X) Possess Nuclear Weapons
      (X) Possess Largest Army on the Earth

      Come on, even Dubya isn't that stupid!
    • This is simple. China has the capacity to do some real damage to us, they have a space program, probably have some ICBMs, definitely have nuclear weapsons. War with China would have terrible ramifications on US soil. Other smaller countries that we preemtively invade will only kill our troops, and we don't show coffins on tv anymore, so that's just a blurb on the news.
    • Re:War on China (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Tanktalus (794810)

      Pick one:

      • Nuclear weapons
      • Lack of oil
      • Too big to bully around, even if the US did win

      On the other hand, Japan would likely be one of the first countries to sign up as a US ally!

    • You forgot a few important ones:

      (_) Odds favourable of having fewer foreign civilians unjustly die in a war versus deaths under the status quo.
      (_) Economic opportunity cost of fighting for someone else's freedoms (Will the economic cost of fighting the war be disproportionate to the economic gains as well as the amount of freedom/justice acquired by the foreign citizens vs status quo)
      (_) Human/freedom opportunity cost of fighting for someone else's freedoms (Will the number of our deaths be disproportionat
    • Answers (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Cro Magnon (467622) on Wednesday December 08, 2004 @02:32PM (#11034275) Homepage Journal
      (X) Possesses Weapons of Mass Destruction
      (X) Possesses 200 Million Man Army
      (X) Possesses Cheap/Slave Labor
    • Re:War on China (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Loco3KGT (141999)
      Better question is why does the European Union SUPPORT this country?

      Why do Germany and France want to drop all economic sanctions with this country?

      We can't go it alone with China. We'd need Russia and Europe in on this, and they'd never help. They're all getting fat rich off that dictatorship.
    • If these are the valid reasons, could someone please explain why America is not at war with China?

      Because you forget the unspoken checklist:

      ( ) Has gigantic oil reserves.
      ( ) Its leader has been used as a villain in movies for years.
      ( ) Has a weakened national defense, making it easy prey.
      ( ) Has been inspected and proven free of actual weapons of mass destructions.
      ( ) Its generals are easy to bribe, will surrender without too much trouble.
      ( ) Can be used as a strategic military foothold in the region.
    • Re:War on China (Score:5, Informative)

      by LadyLucky (546115) on Wednesday December 08, 2004 @03:35PM (#11035078) Homepage
      Err, I know Bush can be rampant, but do you think 'we don't like the government' should be automatic cause for war? Crikey.

      My ex-girlfriend was Chinese. There were some interesting things that came out of that:

      • She had never seen that footage of Tianamen square with the student in front of the tank
      • She is quite happy with the performance of the government
      • She said that she is able to vote, just like us (hmmm, i later convinced her that voting in China isn't quite like voting here in NZ)
      • She was quite upset when my brother's Taiwanese wife answered to the question 'Are you chinese', 'No, I'm Taiwanese'
      • China's leadership is anything but unstable. And irresponsible is a bit far. China has to be one of the least aggressive large countries in the world, ever. How many wars has China started? Really?
      • They hate the Japanse. Rape of Nanking anyone?
  • by codesurfer (786910) on Wednesday December 08, 2004 @02:11PM (#11034007)
    then can we lobby to ban anything that depicts Nick Lachey and Jessica Simpson as talented?
  • Funny (Score:3, Insightful)

    by NeoSkandranon (515696) on Wednesday December 08, 2004 @02:12PM (#11034022)
    Difficult to take a government seriously when they complain that a video game damages their sovereignty.
  • by magikweis (123136)
    I work for a publishing house in Germany. Whenever we are going to produce a book with maps, which may include Taiwan, we can not print it in China. The Chinese government insists on Taiwan beeing printed in the same colours and font size as provinces of Mainland China. They take a tough line in order to not erode their position in this conflict.
    Now, if one can not produce material like that for export, how can one dare to sell this on the Chinese domestic market?
  • From The Article:

    China, sensitive about issues of national sovereignty, has banned a computer sports game that classifies Taiwan, Hong Kong, Macau and Tibet as countries and has threatened to fine Web sites that supply the game and Internet cafes that let patrons download it.

    Regardless of the state of Taiwan's independence, it looks like that the game is indeed geographically incorrect. Hong Kong and Macau are both officially part of China. This would be similar to a game depicting Texas as its own co

    • Re:From the Article (Score:3, Informative)

      by kahei (466208)

      Tibet is also officially part of China -- and so is Taiwan in the official opinion of many countries.

      This is why Windows went from 'country' to 'region' in all it's i8n settings.

  • Remember this (Score:2, Interesting)

    by squarooticus (5092)
    Anytime an American citizen bitches about how America (or should I say Amerikkka) is become a facist dictatorship under the Bush Dynasty, I should refer them to stories like this. Sedition (which is essentially how Chinese authorities see this game) has long been unprosecutable in the United States, whether it is officially restricted by the Constitution or not.

    We the People have more power than many of the more hysterical among us admit. The Chinese people have far less than most of us who grew up in th
  • Insecure thugs react violently to anything which might be a threat.

    I don't think this tells us anything about China's government that we didn't already know.

  • Different approach (Score:5, Insightful)

    by kahei (466208) on Wednesday December 08, 2004 @02:20PM (#11034130) Homepage

    There is a lot of ignorance here about the difference between the Chinese and Western ways of defining, and thus changing, reality.

    If a Western government banned a game or a particular statement, it would be a move against that particular game or statement. When the Chinese government does it, it's one tiny part of the general full-time business of defining the version of reality they want to be percieved (and which is percieved) as the canonical Chinese one.

    China is a large country, containing large areas which were not China until quite recently and still have major anti-Chinese native populations, and large areas whose interests conflict with each other and with Beijing's interests. The Chinese machine -- 'leadership' is the wrong word because it is a culture-wide effort -- has therefore always worked hard to promote a unified pro-Chinese vision in which the answer to the questions 'Should we not be part of China? Can China do bad?' is an automatic, instinctive 'no', so automatic that the question cannot really be asked at all.

    If you want to get a feel for this, try reading XinHua in parallel with your other news sources. At first you will note differences here and there but over time you will come to see two different, parallel world histories going on; the XinHua one and the 'real' one.

    But the true effect is only achieved when the whole dialectic of discussion at all levels, not just of government-controlled news sources, assumes the artificial reality, and this effect has been achieved brilliantly -- although lately they have been resorting to extreme nationalism to keep it up. The abuse of foreign soccer teams, the constant rehearsing of Japanese, British and French crimes in schools, the scholarly books on how Tibet and Goguryeo (google it, I don't know the right romanization though) and this and that bit of India have been stolen away by evil foreign interests but have been returned to China by the force of truth and sincerity -- it's all part of one absolutely brilliant concerted effort of which the banning of this game is a tiny, tiny, tiny, part.

    I think the creation of not merely a new Chinese history but a whole Chinese reality, basically in 5 short decades, is probably the greatest cultural achievement of the previous century.

    Or not.

  • the summary is interesting: why isn't it "asserting Taiwan's independence"? i have no interest in supporting either PRoChina's stance or actions here, but it's worth noting that the government in Taiwan does not "recognize" taiwan as independent. the fact that most of the people there, as well as most Chinese (of any variation) living elsewhere, do is another mater entirely.

    a few years back, a coworker of mine, doing a database project containing short and long form country names, called the Taiwanese cons
  • They've really got a problem is a video game harmed China's sovereignty and territorial integrity. I would really hate to see what would happen to their sovereignty if they were attaked with sometime real like a weapon.
  • IBM (Score:3, Funny)

    by mbbac (568880) on Wednesday December 08, 2004 @02:30PM (#11034254)
    Wasn't IBM pre-loading this game on all of their PCs?
  • by The-Bus (138060)
    Here are the Accoona results for "Soccer Manager 2005" [accoona.com]. It seems like a very generic name, so I don't know if it's the same as "Worldwide Soccer Manager" [ign.com]. Xinhua is running an article with screenshots [xinhuanet.com]. It's quite likely this might be the title by Sports Interactive (or a bootleg of it), but unfortunately you need to be a member of their forums [sigames.com] before you can search any information on their message board.
  • Is it just me, or does TFA instantly crash firefox when I try to read it ?
  • Free Software too.. (Score:4, Informative)

    by molo (94384) on Wednesday December 08, 2004 @02:38PM (#11034361) Journal
    This kind of stupid nationalism effects Free Software too.

    Herbert Xu, a Debian Developer and maintainer of the Debian Linux Kernel package, resigned from Debian in May 2004 due to a dispute over the use of a Taiwanese flag.

    Resignation on debian-boot with references to context [debian.org]

    start of thread on debian-devel [debian.org]

    -molo
  • Game has flaws too (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Staplerh (806722) on Wednesday December 08, 2004 @02:44PM (#11034440) Homepage
    China is probably banning this game because if your going to prohibit recognization of Taiwanese independence, you must make sure you cover all the bases. We're hearing about it now because it is affecting a computer game, but I'm sure that extends to any form of mass media.

    However, this game has a number of errors. I quote from the article:
    [The game is a C]omputer sports game that classifies Taiwan, Hong Kong, Macau and Tibet as countries
    Get real. Macau and Hong Kong are not independent countries, and Tibet hasn't been one for fifty years. The only country there that has some international standing is Taiwan, and that's by virtue of the United States assistance. This game is another case of designers that didn't bother to check their facts, or were intentionally trying to piss of the People's Republic of China. If China wouldn't ban it based on Taiwan, your damned right they'd ban it based on Tibet, and probably just laugh at the notion of an independent Macau. I am certainly not endorsing the actions of China, and regard the invasion of Tibet as a travesty, but sometimes people have to respect political realities.

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