Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
Censorship China Government Piracy The Media Your Rights Online Politics

"New Statesman" Pirates Its Own Magazine 117

Posted by timothy
from the anticipation-defuses-censorship dept.
WebMink writes "Knowing that its explosive special edition on China this week will be blocked by censorship, UK political magazine 'New Statesmen' has taken the unusual step of posting its own torrents of the PDF of the Mandarin edition on the magazine. Looking at the content of the issue they are probably right to expect censorship — there's an article from the former newspaper editor Cheng Yizhong about media censorship, and Ai Weiwei interviews a member of the '50 cent party' — a commenter paid half a dollar every time he derails an online debate in China. 'Essentially, these people are paid internet trolls; their job is to stop any meaningful discussion online about the government.'" Specifically, the magazine has made available this issue as a PDF and also as a torrent (magnet link).
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

"New Statesman" Pirates Its Own Magazine

Comments Filter:
  • by adnonsense (826530) on Thursday October 18, 2012 @08:49AM (#41691427) Homepage Journal

    Who on earth came up with that headline?

    • by MickyTheIdiot (1032226) on Thursday October 18, 2012 @08:50AM (#41691435) Homepage Journal

      Jack Valenti

      • by phayes (202222)

        My God, I knew that the RIAA was evil but now they are using the Undead [wikipedia.org]!

      • by brit74 (831798)
        I actually thought it was the pirates themselves referring to it as "piracy" because they wanted to make the argument "See! Pirating is so good for the magazine that they're helping people pirate! Everyone should let everything be pirated! Down with copyright!"
    • by Johnny Fusion (658094) <zenmondo@gmaAUDENil.com minus poet> on Thursday October 18, 2012 @08:56AM (#41691487) Homepage Journal
      If you read the article, the New Statesmen themselves refer to it as "pirated" (in quotes). While one could pay money for the Magazine, those who can read Mandarin can get it for free using pirating methods where the print version will most likely not see the light of day due to state censorship. They are using this technique as its well known "the internet routes around censorship"
      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by Anonymous Coward

        Pardon, nitpick.

        Chinese is something you read.

        Mandarin is something you speak.

        (Multiple spoken dialects that map to the same unified writing.)

        • by jonadab (583620)
          > Chinese is something you read.
          > Mandarin is something you speak.

          Technically, that's an oversimplification.

          It's a *good* oversimplification, because it's almost entirely correct. But reality is somewhat more complicated.

          More precisely, Mandarin is a very popular dialect of Chinese (perhaps the most popular, although measuring popularity is inherently a bit subjective), and the differences between the major dialects of Chinese are significantly more pronounced in speech than in writing.
          • by Anonymous Coward

            Me, I wish people would stop referring to the different Chinese languages as "dialects".
            Mandarin, Cantonese, Shanghainese, etc., etc., are not mutually intelligible.
            Calling them the same language is essentially CCP propaganda.

            • by jonadab (583620)
              > Me, I wish people would stop referring to the different Chinese languages as "dialects".

              Honestly, the word "dialects" really just means "directly related languages". Some dialects are mutually intelligible and some are not. The various Chinese languages are generally mutually intelligible in written form, not so much when spoken.

              What I find odd is that the Romance languages (Spanish, French, Portuguese, Italian, etc.) are almost never called dialects. They're so closely related and so similar (apart
      • by sumdumass (711423)

        Here is the problem though. Torrent does not equal pirating methods. And even if it did, the fact that the copyright owner gave permission to copy and download or distribute the copy, removes any and all aspects of pirating unless they open the issue with a feature story on pirates in the south pacific.

    • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday October 18, 2012 @09:05AM (#41691557)

      Thank god this was derailed quickly. Just imagine how horrible it would have been if people actually discussed something meaningful. After all, its obviously much more important to dissect a headline, of an aggregation site notorious for useless and incorrect headlines, than it is to actually discuss the content on which the article reports.

      Here's a clue. This is not the time for THAT discussion.

      You must be a blast at parties.

      • by omnichad (1198475)

        You really must be new here.

      • by jonadab (583620)
        > Just imagine how horrible it would have been if
        > people actually discussed something meaningful.

        This is Slashdot. The question of what does or does not constitute piracy is considered highly meaningful by a significant percentage of the people here. The site runs a lot of stories devoted entirely to that topic, in fact. (Granted, I don't know that this was necessarily intended to be one of them; censorship is _also_ a fairly major topic here, so the submitter may well have intended the story to b
      • by JTsyo (1338447)
        This is exactly the time to talk about it. The article is about the New Statesman releasing its magazine as a torrent to bypass censorship. If it was about the actual article within the New Statesman then the comment could have been considered off-topic.
      • This should have been modded flamebait.

        The relentless perpetration of massive lies is far more important than the content of the ridiculously headlined post in this case especially since the actual article is not even titled that way.

        For such misinformation to be allowed to perpetrate without calling it on a forum where people know a hell of a lot better is ludicrous.

    • To heck with that... I just want to know where I can get paid for derailing discussions. I could make some serious D'oh!
    • by Chrisq (894406)

      Who on earth came up with that headline?

      I don't know but they should go home (by TWOCing their own car), burgle their own house, then sexually molest themselves.

    • by tehcyder (746570)
      You forgot to say copyright != theft because no one on slashdot has the brains to appreciate that distinction either.
    • by Omniskio (1153619)
      "Who on earth came up with that headline?" (Errr...the one posting it maybe?) From the WMD Handbook: Divert attention away from the original article, news report, or incident immediately. Guide the discussion towards safer topics, preferably topics embarrassing and controversial to "The West", but any topic will do. If this diversionary tactic fails, insults are you next course of action. Intimate that the commentator is unemployed, hides in his parents' basement, has no girlfriend, is a drug addict, etc.
  • Can't seem to access the PDF link to read more into it. Interesting that the (sometimes) hours of effort involved in derailing a message thread or debate only pays 50 cents - one might argue that you'd be looking at 50-100 threads at once, but surely that's still not enough to justify the hours of work that must go into it each day?
    • by jasonvan (846103)
      They say to work for the love of the job, not the money.
    • Also remember the cost of living and average wage are lower in China, so without checking any actual numbers, it may be more akin to several dollars per derailment in the US. Still not a lot, but it'd be a nice little side gig and as the other poster mentioned, they may just enjoy doing it.

    • Re:Broken PDF link? (Score:4, Informative)

      by WebMink (258041) <slashdot AT webmink DOT net> on Thursday October 18, 2012 @09:06AM (#41691563) Homepage
      Seems the Slashdot editor has broken the link - the file is easily available from the link in the article [newstatesman.com].
    • The PDF is at http://www.newstatesman.com/sites/default/files/files/AWW%20New%20Statesman.pdf [newstatesman.com] Also its in Mandarin so not sure how much more you will be able to read into it.
    • by MarkGriz (520778) on Thursday October 18, 2012 @09:15AM (#41691619)

      Can't seem to access the PDF link to read more into it

      Perhaps you should pirate it from somewhere

    • by Chrisq (894406)

      Can't seem to access the PDF link to read more into it. Interesting that the (sometimes) hours of effort involved in derailing a message thread or debate only pays 50 cents - one might argue that you'd be looking at 50-100 threads at once, but surely that's still not enough to justify the hours of work that must go into it each day?

      Just look at the people here who do the same thing for free though!

    • by jonadab (583620)
      > Interesting that the (sometimes) hours of effort involved
      > in derailing a message thread or debate only pays 50 cents

      I don't know exactly how the article determined the "fifty cents" figure, but if that's half a US dollar's worth of the People's Currency as determined by exchange rates, it would have rather more than fifty cents' worth of purchasing power in China. (The Chinese government deliberately keeps the value of their currency somewhat low in terms of purchasing power parity compared to oth
  • Chinese Edition (Score:5, Informative)

    by donscarletti (569232) on Thursday October 18, 2012 @09:05AM (#41691551)

    It should be "Chinese Edition" since it refers to the written language. Mandarin is a spoken dialect of Chinese, roughly equivalent to what "Received Pronunciation" is to English. Chinese can generally understand all Mandarin, though few outside of Beijing can speak it perfectly.

    Modern written Chinese borrows heavily from Mandarin grammar and vocabulary, while retaining some conventions from Classical Chinese, the older written form that was pretty much impossible to understand when read aloud.

    While it is possible to write in Chinese characters using Cantonese, Minnan or Wu grammar, it's quite rare and considered strange or wrong, even in regions where those dialects are spoken.

    • Mandarin is a spoken dialect of Chinese, roughly equivalent to what "Received Pronunciation" is to English.

      This is factually incorrect. “Chinese” used colloquially in English refers only to Mandarin Chinese. Mandarin is not a dialect of a larger language, it is a language in and of itself. Speakers of other Chinese languages, e.g. Min or Yue or Hakka, can’t understand Mandarin hardly at all without formal education. The analogy is more like English versus Dutch or German. Dutch and German speakers are often fluent in English, but this is only because they have extensive schooling in English. Th

    • While it is possible to write in Chinese characters using Cantonese, Minnan or Wu grammar, it's quite rare and considered strange or wrong, even in regions where those dialects are spoken.

      Not really, while modern mainland books and magazines have standardized to Mandarin/Beijingese grammar, many publications worldwide and on the mainland, especially those still published in Traditional Chinese use Cantonese grammar as that is the dominate dialect that still holds onto the Traditional writing type.

      Simplified Chinese, being the work of the PRC-CPC, is strictly written in Mandarin/Beijingese style grammar.

      • Traditional Chinese is most often used in Taiwan (pop 23 million), where the offical language is Mandarin. Hong Kong people taking notes for themselves often prefer writing English and when writing informally and Mandarin influenced Chinese (with Traditional characters) when writing novels and other great works (see Gu Long, Jin Yong, Liang Yusheng, etc.). The overwealming majority of Cantonese speakers live on the mainland though and only know how to write using Mandarin grammar.

        Best to think of Simplified

  • From 1223-1240, Mongols (partial ancestors of today's Han Chinese and cultural contributors to all of Asia) invaded Europe, eventually being stopped at the borders of Western Europe.

    From 1839 to 1860, the English and Chinese fought a series of wars. If it had not occurred before, resentment of the West was now part of the Chinese psyche.

    In 1949, China became communist. It no longer had the pro-Western orientation of its nationalist party.

    From 1950 to 1953, the US fought a proxy war with China in Korea.

    From

    • by Anonymous Coward

      North Vietnam was allied with the Soviet Union; they are not big fans of China for historical reasons.

      The PRC and the USSR parted ways after Stalin died; they were in their own little mini-ColdWar for most of the 50s-90s.

      You might want to pay more attention to history.

    • by khallow (566160)
      So we should expect new invasions of vast hordes of horse archers from Mongolia? New employment options in the pillage and loot industry?
    • by jonadab (583620)
      > Many of our enemies are using weapons made by
      > China or her allies in Russia and Eastern Europe.

      China and Russia have not been allies since... well, technically they were allies for part of World War II, but it was a pretty uneasy alliance even then. Also, that was the Nationalist government of China (which is now de facto the government of Taiwan), before they were driven out.

      Yes, I know, the current Chinese government has its roots in Communism, which came out of Russia. That's true. It does n
    • by brit74 (831798)
      Yeash. You have a bizarrely Chinese-centric version of history.

      The war in Korea was a US "proxy war" against China? What nonsense. It was a war started by the (Communist) North Koreans. It's a lot easier to make the argument that the Korean war was a Chinese proxy war against the United States than vice-versa. (Or are you aiming to make the US the bad guy?) The USSR was also a big backer of the North Koreans (so why don't you call the Korea war a proxy war against the USSR?) Afterall, the North Ko
      • by tehcyder (746570)

        The Vietnam war was about stopping the spread of communism into South Vietnam (see the Domino Theory)

        The entirely discredited Domino Theory was an absurd piece of justification for military/economic intervention. Here's a clue: if a country wants to be "communist" [*] it's not the job of the US to stop them.

        [*] This was used to describe any vaguely left wing or democratic movement that did not pander to the US military-industrial complex.

  • "the '50 cent party' &#226;&#8364;" a commenter paid half a dollar every time he derails an online debate in China"

    I wonder how many microsofties on here have similar arrangements.

    Its what you do when you study english.
    • I bet there are certainly a few, though with a pay rate higher than 50 cents. I'd believe $5 per thread. $10 if they are getting a luxury payout for being good.

      • by tehcyder (746570)

        I bet there are certainly a few, though with a pay rate higher than 50 cents. I'd believe $5 per thread. $10 if they are getting a luxury payout for being good.

        I can confirm that the figure is in fact $108.50 (less withholding tax) per thread. If you have accounts with all the major players (Microsoft, Apple, Google, Twitter, Facebook) and accounts on slashdot, reddit, digg, twitter, faceboook and a few others and you post on a few threads on each every day, you can pretty soon get yourself a nice 7 figure annual salary for a couple of hours work a day. You won't get rich like Bill Gates, but you'll be comfortable.

        However, these gigs are appointment only. If

    • by N1AK (864906)
      Nah there's plenty of chumps who will try to derail these kinds of discussions for free in the West. Just look at your own post for a great example.
    • Assuming english forums, it's probably good practice for speaking/writing english.

      And they get paid for it.

      It's a two-fer.

    • by jonadab (583620)
      Unnecessary. Americans will do it for free, just because they're bored.
  • Sounds Familiar (Score:1, Flamebait)

    by organgtool (966989)

    their job is to stop any meaningful discussion online about the government.

    So they are the Chinese equivalent of Fox News. I'm not just trying to make a joke, that is absolutely one of the effects of Fox News. They troll every story with a partisan angle and push their base ridiculously far to the right. Then everyone in the left and center responds by ridiculing them and offering counterpoints to their ridiculous arguments. But that doesn't matter because the effect of Fox News making their ridiculous

    • Funny thing - last year a professor (UCLA?) used standard statistical measures on various news outlets to measure overall bias. I don't recall the details of the methodology, but it is one that has been used for a long time for this sort of thing. He found that most of the mainstream news media were far to the left (over 70%), and Fox News was only slightly to the left (IIRC 52%, within experimental error).

      It's also worth noting that in DC something over 90% of all news professionals are registered to lef

      • People measure left and right relative to their own views. There is no ideal objective measure. You can write surveys for it, but all they do is embody the writers ideas of what left and right should be. Political alignment is all relative. As many have pointed out before me, a party that American standards would classify as on the left would be considered as on the right by European standards.

        There's an implicit view in your post that the center, neutral ground, is where media should be. This is debateab
        • No argument there, though I would argue that the media can not rightly assert that they are neutral when their own demographic is so highly skewed from the population. Rather than a highly skewed reporting entity 'trying to be unbiased', I would prefer if their institutions weren't essentially echo chambers for their own biases - I would like to see two news reporters who actually disagree once in a while - in private, not to mention in public.

          Of course, that's about as likely as a reporter who actually kn

      • by JTsyo (1338447)
        How do you determine the center in reality other than by asking people what they think? The US center is overall more to the right when compared to Europe but compared to Asia we would be more to the left.
      • by OneAhead (1495535)

        most of the mainstream news media were far to the left (over 70%), and Fox News was only slightly to the left (IIRC 52%, within experimental error).

        This makes you sound just like those climate change deniers who are always pointing to a handful of deeply flawed studies (often published by shills) and ignore a massive body of scientific work that goes against their agenda.

        News outlets including CNN cited a study of several major media outlets by a UCLA political scientist and a University of Missouri-Columbia economist purporting to "show a strong liberal bias." But the study employed a measure of "bias" so problematic that its findings are next to us

      • by tehcyder (746570)

        Funny thing - last year a professor (UCLA?) used standard statistical measures on various news outlets to measure overall bias. I don't recall the details of the methodology, but it is one that has been used for a long time for this sort of thing. He found that most of the mainstream news media were far to the left (over 70%), and Fox News was only slightly to the left (IIRC 52%, within experimental error).

        That is the funniest thing I have read all week.

        It's also worth noting that in DC something over 90% of all news professionals are registered to left or extreme left parties - IIRC last survey showed over 12/13. Among the reporters and editors the ratio is more extreme. I just read a quote from the editor or publisher or something at NY Times, who said (as I recall) that everyone in the news room and editorial staff is so far left that they don't even know how to cover a story from any other angle.

        If you are a college grad, realize that at most colleges over 95% of instructors are left or far left - so your education started out from a very left perspective. Chances are, based on the available inputs to most of us, your idea of 'center' is probably somewhere to the left of where it really is. Of course I don't know you, I'm generalizing.

        IMHO any news organization that presumes to be nonpartisan should have approximately equal numbers of personnel of all common persuasions. AFAIK the only 'mainstream' news TV outlet with _any_ regular non-leftist onscreen personalities is Fox - I don't have cable and rarely see TV, so I could be mistaken on that by now. (plus also maybe Bloomberg and some other financial channels?) I think the experience of Juan Williams (is he still on Fox?) is a useful example.

        Oh, you were being serious. I'd get some urgent professional help if I were you, whatever drugs you're on aren't helping.

  • They'll PAY YOU to troll? I'm quitting my job and moving to china!

  • Pirating (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Taibhsear (1286214) on Thursday October 18, 2012 @10:13AM (#41692207)

    You keep using that word. I do no think that word means what you think it means...

  • "the '50 cent party' — a commenter paid half a dollar every time he derails an online debate in China. 'Essentially, these people are paid internet trolls; their job is to stop any meaningful discussion online about the government."

    Discern your political leaning:

    1. Oh my god, how corrupt!
    2. Eh, companies astroturf, why not governments?
    3. 50 cents? That's not a living wage!

  • To their list of prank phone names?
  • They own it, and all the rights to it, so unless they have refused to give themselves permission to distribute their magazine, a concept that makes no sence, they have the right to distribute it any way they want.

    Translation: They can't pirate their own stuff.

  • I think the "Kanye West Party" might be more accurate in this case.
  • You keep using that word. I do not think you know what it means.

  • If you give it away, its not "pirating"

"A great many people think they are thinking when they are merely rearranging their prejudices." -- William James

Working...