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Archive for the 'Policy' Category

Obama wins 2009 Nobel Peace Prize

Friday, October 9th, 2009

US President Barack Obama has won the 2009 Nobel Peace Prize.

The Nobel Committee said he was awarded it for "his extraordinary efforts to strengthen international diplomacy and co-operation between peoples".

There were a record 205 nominations for this year’s prize.

The laureate - chosen by a five-member committee - wins a gold medal, a diploma and 10m Swedish kronor ($1.4m).

U.S. President Barack Obama won the Nobel Peace Prize on Friday for his calls to reduce the world’s stockpile of nuclear weapons and working for world peace.

The first African American to hold the country’s highest office, Obama has called for disarmament and worked to restart the stalled Middle East peace process since taking office in January.

Green Iran

Monday, June 22nd, 2009

Which is the symbol of the current movement (hard to miss really) for more democracy and freedom in the recent election fraud case in Iran. So I’ll post my symbol of Green for support of the Iranian “free” people.

 

Those green wristbands by the Iranian football team demonstrate another such symbol of solidarity.

You’d have to be sitting in a cubby hole if you don’t know what’s going on out there..GREEN IRAN! (just search Iran or Iran Election if you must!)

Remembering Tiananmen in 2009

Friday, June 5th, 2009

A record 150,000 people poured into Victoria Park last night to pay homage to those who died in and around Beijing’s Tiananmen Square 20 years ago.

The turnout claimed by organizers for the June 4 candlelight vigil would therefore equal the 150,000 who turned up for the first anniversary of the crackdown in 1990. Police, however, put last night’s attendance at 62,800 - the second highest turnout, as they estimated the 1990 figure at 80,000.

By contrast, only about 300 attended a similar ceremony in neighboring Macau last night.

Szeto Wah, chairman of the Hong Kong Alliance in Support of Patriotic Democratic Movements of China which organized the event, said he was more than happy as the attendance exceeded all expectations.

Because of the huge turnout, the 8pm start of the vigil was put back 30 minutes since all six football fields were packed with more people streaming in.

Around 8.20pm, the organizer opened a basketball court and an adjoining lawn to accommodate the overflow.

Veteran democrat Martin Lee Chu- ming said he was proud of those who had turned up. "Those who showed up tonight represent the views of the Chinese populations all over the world. It also shows young people have not forgotten June 4," Lee said.

Before the one-minute silence, Szeto led a group of young students who were born in 1989 to lay a wreath while the names of known victims of the crackdown were read

out. The crowd then sang and lit candles while calling for a vindication of those who lost their lives.

One of the highlights of the vigil was the broadcast of an audio clip recorded by the late premier Zhao Ziyang while he was under house arrest.

In it, Zhao reaffirmed claims the students at Tiananmen Square in 1989 had been law abiding.

Also present was Xiong Yan, the first Tiananmen student leader to take part in the Alliance’s activity in Hong Kong. "Hong Kong is the pride of China and even the whole world because the Hong Kong people uphold freedom. The world will treasure Hong Kong and her people," said Xiong, adding he was happy to be back on Chinese soil.

Before the vigil ended at 10pm, legislator Lee Cheuk-yan called on all people to join the upcoming July 1 rally.

According to a declaration at the vigil, "June 4 was the dark age of contemporary Chinese history. We again light the candle as we have lit it for the past 20 years."

Though the declaration does not accuse Chief Executive Donald Tsang Yam-kuen by name, it condemns those who "buried their conscience."

The declaration read: "Regrettably, 20 years on, people who have buried their conscience express mistaken ideas, saying that 20 years of successful development will help people to arrive at an `objective evaluation’ of June 4. Does this mean that economic development can legalize and legitimize the June 4 massacre?

"Does it mean Hong Kong should cover up the crime of those in power for the sake of economic interests? Let us hold our candles, hold our dignity and conscience high, to light up Hong Kong, light up China, and not to allow ignorant leaders riding on the heads of the people to continue their arrogant ways. Chief Executive Donald Tsang Yam-kuen, can you hear us?"

Tsang’s remarks last month sparked public outrage as he glossed over the June 4 crackdown by speaking of the mainland’s economic development over the years. He also said his views represented Hong Kong people in general.

Among those who showed up were Lasse Markus Galschiot and Kasper Markus, sons of the Danish sculptor Jens Galschiot who made the Pillar of Shame to commemorate the 1989 crackdown.

Others said they attended the vigil to show Tsang he could not speak for them.

Obama a President of Hope

Wednesday, January 21st, 2009

"I stand here today humbled by the task before us," said Mr Obama as he began his inaugural address.

He thanked outgoing president George W. Bush before pledging to live up to the enormous challenges that lie ahead.

"I say to you that the challenges we face are real. They are serious and they are many. They will not be met easily or in a short span of time. But know this, America - they will be met," he said.

"On this day, we gather because we have chosen hope over fear, unity of purpose over conflict and discord."

More than 2 million well-wishers braved temperatures hovering at  minus-2 degrees Celsius to cram the National Mall and streets leading onto the US capital’s central thoroughfare, clogging the metro system and roads for hours before Mr Obama took the oath of office.

Mr Obama, the son of a black Kenyan father and a white American mother, swore to "preserve, protect and defend" the US constitution as he took the oath in front of the US Capitol building.

"This is the culmination of two years of work," said Obama activist Akin Salawu, who helped the candidate as a community organiser. "We got on board when Obama was the little engine who could. He’s like a child you’ve held onto. Now he’s going out into the world."

Mr Obama, 47, and his wife, Michelle, earlier attended services at St John’s Episcopal Church, across from the White House. Along with Vice-President Joe Biden and his wife, Jill, they then had coffee at the executive mansion with Mr Bush, his outgoing deputy, Dick Cheney, and their wives.

The former Illinois senator stepped up to the dais in front of the Capitol early this morning Hong Kong time to assume power from Mr Bush after two terms marked by political division.

Mr Obama is famed for his eloquence, but he stumbled his way through the oath of office, talking over Chief Justice John Roberts.

But this was forgotten as Mr Obama, who inherits an economic crisis, two foreign wars and massive challenges to US authority overseas, delivered a soaring inaugural speech.

"We remain the most prosperous, powerful nation on Earth. Our workers are no less productive than when this crisis began," he said.

"Our minds are no less inventive, our goods and services no less needed than they were last week or last month or last year. Our capacity remains undiminished. But our time of standing pat, of protecting narrow interests and putting off unpleasant decisions - that time has surely passed. Starting today, we must pick ourselves up, dust ourselves off, and begin again the work of remaking America."

Looking overseas, Mr Obama said America’s multicultural history put it in a unique position of responsibility.

Because of this history "we cannot help but believe that the old hatreds shall someday pass; that the lines of tribe shall soon dissolve; that as the world grows smaller, our common humanity shall reveal itself; and that America must play its role in ushering in a new era of peace", he said.

The celebrations in Washington had an acute poignancy for many, given the new president’s bi-racial heritage.

Christian Alderson went to Memphis, Tennessee, in 1968 in support of the civil rights movement and was there when Martin Luther King was assassinated 40 years ago. "That day was sorrowful," Mr Alderson, 73, said. "This is a dream come true for me."

Rather be Naked than wear fur, an animal rights message!

Wednesday, November 26th, 2008

In a protest against Giorgio Armani’s continued use of fur in its latest collection, animal rights group Peta yesterday deployed two "angels" to rally the crowd outside the fashion house’s flagship store in Central.

"Armani promised us it would stop using fur last year," said Rebecca Chui Shin-ping, a spokeswoman for People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, which is known for its aggressive campaigning. "But in his new collection he is using rabbit fur even for children’s clothes."

Armani said yesterday: "As a luxury fashion house, which has always been attentive to this issue, we feel we are being unfairly targeted in comparison to our competitors. In September we gave our commitment to Peta to refrain from future use of any animal furs other than humanely sourced rabbit fur."

However, Peta said its investigations found mainland farms that supplied fur to Armani were torturing rabbits. "Workers at the farm pull rabbits from cages by their ears and shoot them in the head with electric stun guns," its statement said.

Dressed in lingerie with wings and a halo, the protesters held up signs and attracted a small crowd of onlookers as they walked outside the store in Alexandra House. They stayed for about an hour.

Ms Chui said Peta started targeting the fashion house this year after it "broke its promise". Giorgio Armani had said he was convinced by Peta "not to use fur", according to a report on Time.com in July last year.

To press Armani to stop using fur, Peta planned to organise similar protests in the United States, Taiwan and the Philippines, Ms Chui said.

Ashley Fruno has been frequently used as a model for animal protection rights not just for PETA but has been active in Australia! It is pretty effective I’d say!

Hong Kong votes for Democracy

Wednesday, September 10th, 2008

Hong Kong voters chose a new legislature, with pro-democracy parties retaining a law-blocking veto and the pro-business Liberal Party losing its top two leaders in surprise defeats.

Democrats held onto more than a third of the 60 council seats, potentially giving them power to alter bills that will shape the political future of the southern Chinese city, according to final results from the Hong Kong Election Commission. Liberal Party Chairman James Tien and Vice Chairwoman Selina Chow both lost their seats. Turnout was about 45 percent, compared with 55.6 percent in the 2004 election.

“The biggest loser would definitely be the Liberals, the so-called pro-business party,” Andrew Shuen, co-founder and research director at Hong Kong-based Lion Rock Institute, said in an interview today. “The people of Hong Kong want change. They voted for candidates who didn’t seem to have a chance to win.”

Candidates from parties supporting Chief Executive Donald Tsang had been expected to benefit from warmer ties with China and a surge of patriotism following the Olympics, political analyst Joseph Cheng said before the election.

China still picks the city’s chief executive. Hong Kong returned to Chinese rule in 1997, and the Chinese government has said it won’t allow direct elections for Tsang’s successor in 2012 or before 2020 for lawmakers.

Democrats’ Luck

“The democrats have been lucky,” Ivan Choy, a political science professor at Hong Kong’s Chinese University, said late yesterday.

The result may lead to gridlock in the 60-seat legislature, Shuen said. While the result gives the Democratic Alliance for the Betterment and Progress of Hong Kong and its pro-government allies a majority in the Legislative Council, they fell short of the two-thirds it needs to push through bills.

“There are no winners in this election,” Shuen said. “The DAB has a mandate but not enough seats, while the democrats have enough seats but not a mandate.”

The other 30 seats in the legislature are drawn from so- called functional constituencies that represent special interests and industries, which usually support pro-China parties loyal to the city’s Chief Executive.

“We have to apologize to our supporters for doing badly,” Tien said today at a press conference broadcast on local television stations. Selina Chow resigned from the executive council and as vice chairman of the Liberal party, government- backed Radio Television Hong Kong reported. Tien also quit.

Democrats fought this election without two of their star figures: Martin Lee, the veteran legislator who helped found the Democratic Party, and Anson Chan, the former deputy leader of the government, who both decided not to seek re-election.

Up to 5 year prison term for Indian man for expressing “personal opinion” in India with Google’s support

Monday, May 19th, 2008

Techcrunch has an interesting article on Google supporting and assisting the arrest of an Indian Man for saying he hated a prominent politician. More details on this story here entitled Techie held for posting derogatory messages against Sonia Gandhi on Orkut.

To quote from Techcrunch:

He was then charged under section 292 of Indian Penal Code and section 67 of the Information Technology Act because he created a profile and then posted content in vulgar language about Sonia Gandhi in the community. If he’s convicted, he can be imprisoned for up to five years and may have to pay a fine up to Rs one lakh.

Now what is interesting is that for a democracy like India there appears to be no free speech issue issue for arresting a pan who said he hated a politician.

The Express Indian times said this:

Interestingly, the person who formed this community is not guilty as per the law. The police said that hating Sonia Gandhi is a personal opinion of the person who formed the community and having a personal opinion about someone is not an offence as per the law.

So he may not even be technically in breach as the law says he is entitled to a personal opinion.

So why is he charged and arrested?

Isn’t India a democratic country?

When China arrested people such as Shi Tao the media was abuzz, Yahoo was taken, in part, to congress on this, lots of reactions took place. The world was against China and its government, lots of protests took place. Yahoo was called a moral pygmie for supporting China by US Politicians because of this.

Don’t get me wrong, both is wrong, neither China or India should be arresting people for expressing their personal opinions or their free speech rights.

But the Internet has little  news about Rahul Krishnakumar Vaid from Gurgaon in contrast. Shi Tao in contrast was prominent news including the BBC.

China is not a democratic country yet, it is communist and has laws against certain areas of free speech and media. That they are not  agreeable to some, if not most is not my point, I agree that China needs to open up more and become more democratic which it is slowly embracing. What I find awful is that when a democratic country does the same thing, the world turns a blind eye. WHY?

Because you embrace ‘democracy’ therefore it is ok to break your own fundamental values? Countries that are called communist do not?

A dangerous polarization is taking place, like as was mention in this Pro-China or Anti-China video about the infamous torch relay.

China is viewed as simply bad no matter what it does, and if the media and individuals continue to display China poorly without recognizing that there are other aspects you will make us more suspicious. You will make us wonder more about your hidden agenda to hurt us. Are you afraid of China? Why can a perso be arrested in a democractic country for violations of free speech but not in China? What would happen if someone blogged "I don’t like Hu Jintao?" in China, it would be more than a mere footprint of online news, it would take the world by storm, Google would be asked to come in to congress to explain their actions like Yahoo did.

But for Rahul, he doesn’t seem to matter, because he is from India, or because India is "democratic" and endorses the western view of free speech?

Does the world really think China wouldn’t notice this type of treatment and be understanding of it? What does one really hope to achieve other than further polarizing and segmenting the chinese? If it was the intent of western media to garner sympathy and support for creating a more open society in China, your recent display was anything but.

Eliot Spitzer’s Girl cashes in big time

Monday, March 17th, 2008

A star was born earlier this week, and she was fortunate enough to already have decent-quality products available on the Internet. The price of Ashley Alexandra Dupre’s Amie Street songs instantly soared from pennies to $0.98, and now, according to the Post, has settled around $0.68. And that just the beginning for this very physical digital entrepreneur.Highlights from the Post:

  • $200,000+ from song sales so far (300,000+ downloads)
  • $1 million offer from Hustler magazine
  • Offers from Penthouse, et al
  • $1 million offer from Kick Ass Pictures for a starring role
  • Expected $1 million offer for a book deal.
  • Hypothetical “Client No. 9″ perfume deal
  • “Six figure” offer from Georgi Vodka to star in their butts-on-buses campaign (”She’s probably got the most popular butt in America right now,” a Georgi executive says). Georgi also wants to create a new product around her called “Vodka No. 9.”
  • Commercials, tabloid-TV shows, a sexy clothing line, and more.

The Post’s expert estimates that Ashley could coin $2.5 to $5 million off this publicity bonanza and calculates that she “would have to service Spitzer 581 to 1,162 times at her going rate of $4,300 for four hours to earn the same amount of money.”

The downside: Her new business success will make her ineligible for further representation by her public defender. Also, the 22-year old will be besieged by reps, managers, advisors, acquaintances, and agents of all types, some of whom will no doubt persuade her that she can’t afford not to pay them hundreds of thousands of dollars a year. In the moment, this will seem like pennies, but if her career trajectory follows that of other instant web stars, will soon leave her penniless again.

Wow, is all I can say!

China relaxes censorship ahead of Olympics, can buy Playboy??

Sunday, March 9th, 2008

Visitors to the Beijing Games may be able to buy Playboy and a raft of other limited publications as China mulls relaxing its controls for the Summer Olympics in line with international practice.

Source China Daily.


All pornographic material is prohibited on the mainland but a temporary exception could be made for the Games, according to the biggest importer of foreign publications in the country. “Our law forbids Playboy and we should obey this, but we can’t rule out the possibility that it might make its debut. There might be a demand for it (from athletes or visitors) during the Games,” said Liang Jianrui, vice-president of China National Publications Import and Export Corporation, which will manage the nine magazine-selling kiosks sanctioned by Olympic organizers BOCOG during the Olympic and Paralympic Games.

Each kiosk will retail over 100 kinds of newspapers and magazines, including publications that are difficult to find in the capital like The New York Times, Newsweek and Britain’s The Sun famous for its topless Page 3 models. “We will provide most of the world’s top-selling newspapers and magazines,” said Liang. While Playboy, the brainchild of Hugh Hefner that is known for its “tasteful” photos of buxom beauties, remains a highly controversial choice at the Olympic Village, there is a growing trend in China to experiment with magazines that were once deemed dangerous or unsanitary.

China’s increasingly liberal political climate has seen sweeping changes hit the shelves of bookstores in the last 18 months, with a Chinese edition of edgy music journal Rolling Stone now deemed fit for the Chinese reading public. Other foreign media, like The New York Times, usually costs twice as much in Beijing as it does in Hong Kong - because of high tax rate and shipping costs, and is often restricted to five-star hotels, international compounds and special foreign bookstores.

Many expatriates in the capital consider this one of the “cons” of living in the city. “It is very inconvenient to buy foreign newspapers and magazines in Beijing,” said South African Jeremy Goldkorn, a 12-year China resident who founded a popular English blog about the country. “As a long-term resident of Beijing, I am already used to reading my favorite publications online, but even then, some foreign websites are inexplicably difficult to access.”

Beijing is going all out on a PR offensive to show the world next summer that it is an international city and is ready to bend the rules to give visitors a more comfortable stay. In addition to implementing a citywide clean-up campaign involving taxi-drivers and social etiquette lessons, it is ramping up English learning across the city, recruiting an unprecedented number of volunteers for the Games and doing its utmost to sanitize the environment and food hygiene levels in the city. The relaxation of curbs on magazines and newspapers follows Olympic protocol. Previous host cities like Athens, Sydney and Atlanta were also asked to ensure journalists and athletes had access to all leading international publications.

The move is also in line with a growing appetite among the Chinese public for foreign, and especially original, material, including novels. The final installment of the bestselling Harry Potter series, for example, sold 50,000 copies on its first print here despite a high retail price of 200 yuan per hardback copy. “This trend of releasing more foreign material stems purely from demand,” said Liang. “Before China opened up, expatriates were so eager to read their newspapers and books in Beijing that China made exceptions by opening foreign bookstores. Nowadays, Chinese bookstores sell foreign books.”

The good news for athletes, tourists and journalists during the 2008 Olympics is that they will be able to find many of their favorite paperbacks at downtown bookstores, while also being able to catch up on the latest news from the nine designated kiosks only hours after publications like the Financial Times are printed in Hong Kong. Popular Asian newspapers such as Hong Kong’s South China Morning Post, Singapore’s The Strait Times and France’s L’Équipe will also be available, said Liang.

The kiosks got a pre-run this August at the Olympic co-host city of Qingdao when it staged the Qingdao International Sailing Regatta, an Olympic test event. Liang said his company is also talking with leading newspapers including The Washington Post and Los Angeles Times to keep down retail costs and make sure the papers arrive in a timely manner. These two dailies do not have access to printing presses in Hong Kong and must be flown from the United States to Beijing. “Our newsstands will respond to the practical needs of visitors during the Games,” said Liang. “We plan to release a list of what’s going to be available next April or May, but it may not be the final list.”

Six of the nine kiosks will be located in the media area for accredited and non-accredited journalists, he said. The biggest one, with a floor space of 68 sq m, will sit in the International Broadcasting Center. Athletes and coaches will have access to their favorite reads at the Olympic Village, while another store at the Olympic Green will cater to international and domestic spectators. The newsstands will be updated every three hours from 9 am to 6 pm, Jiao Guoying, president of the company, told local media recently.

On a newsstand at the University of International Business and Economics in north Beijing, several copies of a pink Financial Times stick out from behind piles of Chinese publications. The second-hand newspaper costs only 4 yuan (50 US cents), a fraction of its retail price in Europe, but is a must-read for finance majors at the college. Yet the fact it is even here at all is a mystery to many. “A man delivers the papers to me, but I’m not exactly sure where they come from,” said Han, a vendor at the school who refused to disclose her full name. A man who used to sell second-hand magazines during his college days told China Daily on condition of anonymity that he persuaded airport staff at Beijing Capital International Airport to collect used foreign magazines from the cabins of international flights, before carrying them to universities and crowded English schools like New Oriental in the capital.

As foreign publications, both in print and online, are still few and far between in China, used copies from “smugglers” like this form one of the limited channels for Chinese to (literally) get their hands on material that is easily available overseas. “When Time magazine published its Person of the Year edition last December, featuring a mirror reflecting the reader herself, I was eager to get one,” said Wu Yun, a senior student of Beijing Foreign Studies University. “It took me over a month to get one copy but in the end I did it,” she told China Daily.

Used periodicals like Time, The Economist and National Geographic, which are brought to the Chinese mainland from Hong Kong, are also among the best sellers, said vendors around Wu’s school. One vender there said he sold about 50 to 60 copies every month. Readers of foreign publications in China include students, scholars and office workers with some foreign-language skills.

During weekends, reading rooms for foreign-language periodicals are usually packed at the National Library of China near Zhongguancun, where more than 10,000 foreign periodicals are available. “I asked for leave from my company to come here and read foreign periodicals like I.D., Innovation, Design and Mono,” said a woman surnamed He, an industrial designer in her late 20s and a fine arts enthusiast. “Not many Chinese design companies can afford to subscribe to all these magazines,” she said. “But they are really useful.” Luo Huan, a 30-year-old librarian at the library, said that nowadays Chinese readers want to know more about what is going on in the world of international science, law and social affairs.

Many Chinese frequently read foreign publications online, using portals, search engines, proxies and RSS feeds. The Chinese websites of some western media have also experienced a growing readership on the Chinese mainland. “Reading more global publications certainly broadens the mind,” said Chen Lidan, a media expert at Beijing-based Renmin University. “But right now few people do that in China.”

“The driving force behind foreign publications in China comes from the coalition of the market and the policy. Policy follows demand,” said Liang Jianrui, vice-president of China National Publications Import and Export Corporation. “I often bought second-hand magazines at school. But since I left, I can rarely find them,” said Han Mingbing, a college graduate who now works at a tourism company in Beijing. “If the latest edition of Time was available around the corner, I would snap it up no matter how much it cost,” he said.

Tibetan Antelope Qinghai-Tibet railroad award winning photo is a fake!

Tuesday, February 26th, 2008

Via ifeng

"This is a photograph that everybody is familiar with.  When I first saw it, my eyes lit up: the Tibetan antelopes and the train on the Qinghai-Tibet railroad appeared simultaneously in the eye of the camera.  This was such a precise and decisive moment!  Thus, this photograph was selected as one of the top 10 most memorable photographs of 2006 and its author received innumerable honors … but on the day before yesterday, I suddenly discovered that there was a very obvious line at the bottom of the photograph." On February 12, an essay titled <Liu Weiqiang’s award winning photograph of the Tibetan antelopes is suspected of being fake> was posted to the world’s largest Chinese-language photography forum <Unlimited sights and colors>.  This post quickly drew more than 10,000 page views.  As of 7pm last evening, there were 120,478 page views and 1,524 comments.  Some netizens even compared Liu with "Tiger Zhou."  Could it be that this photograph was the result of PhotoShop manipulation?

The netizen nicknamed Dajiala was the person who made the post.  He questioned the bronze-award winning photograph titled <Wildlife opening the passage of life at the Qinghai-Tibet railway> from the 2006 CCTV news photos of the year.

According to Dajiala, he had liked that photograph before.  On February 10, he passing by the Beijing Number 5 subway’s photograph exhibition and saw this familiar photograph once more.  But this time, he found a suspicious point.  "I suddenly saw a peculiar detail.  At the bottom of the photograph, there was a very obvious line.  I examined it very carefully and it was obviously the stitching of two different parts … if the train and the antelopes came from two different photographs, then this decisive moment was just a simple PhotoShop trick?" Afterwards, Dajiala took out his camera and recorded the details of the photograph.  When he got home, he made a careful comparison with the photograph that he had saved on his computer.  He concluded that the photograph was faked.

Dajiala’s post caused a huge storm and drew many other netizens into an investigation of the veracity of the photograph.  They studied the EXIF information (which are present on digital photographs) and they pored over every detail of the photograph.  They came up with more problems.  "The EXIF information indicated that the time when the photograph was taken was faked!" "The rock in two different photographs taken at different times at the same place was identical!"  "The antelopes were definitely on the move and they cannot but be disrupted by the passing train!"  The netizens used their amateur photography knowledge to cast doubts on this award-winning photograph.  "From how the shutter speed could freeze the Tibetan antelopes, it is reasonable to assume 1/1000 seconds for 20D.  But the date of the photograph was in September, and this is inconsistent with the habits of the Tibetan antelopes." As the doubts rose, netizens said that "Tiger Zhou" has not departed the scene but "Antelope Liu" has arrived.

The reporter took this photograph and consulted a veteran photographer working in journalism in Chengdu.  "A news photograph must emphasize the factual nature of the subject.  If the decisive movement was in fact faked, then the facts do not exist.  It is illogical for this photograph to be entered into a news photography contest." As soon as this photographer took a look at this photograph, he shook his head and said: "According to the habit of the Tibetan antelopes, they will be scared by a passing train and they will scatter everywhere.  They could not maintain a straight-line file so calmly." Then he produced a photograph of a train passing by some Tibetan antelopes, which scattered in fear."  So anyone familiar with Tibetan antelopes would see that this photograph was illogical.  But if ordinary netizens can spot this problem, why did the many judges for CCTV fail to spot it?  Instead, they awarded a bronze award for photojournalism.  This photographer thinks that CCTV should bear the primary responsibility for the mistake.

This photograph is very well-known and has been published in more than 200 media outlets around the world.  The award-winning photographer is Liu Weiqiang, who is presently the assistant director of the photography department at Daqing Evening News.  He is a senior member of the Chinese Photographers Association and a special contracted Xinhua photographer.  Yesterday afternoon, this reporter made contact with Liu by mobile telephone.  At the time, Liu was out of town on assignment.

"The antelopes in the photograph are real.  The overpass bridge is also real.  But it was not easy to capture such a moment."  Liu Weiqiang admitted openly: The photograph was created by PhotoShop.  Liu said that the photograph was taken in 2006 and served as the poster/postcard for the Kekexili nature preservation area.  Later, the Kekexili nature preservation area let the China Environmental News publish it.  This photograph was then discovered by CCTV which selected it as one of the most memorable news photographs of the year 2006.  "I had never published this photograph as a news photograph.  After receiving this award, I did not use it to enter the Holland world competition or the China news photography competition, because this was an artistic photograph that had been modified."  As to why a PhotoShop-ed photograph could win a news photography award, Liu Weiqiang said, "Maybe it is because the award judges were not familiar with the habits of the Tibetan antelopes."

"Actually, I hoped that this incident would blow up because more people will pay attention to the Tibetan antelopes!" said Liu Weiqiang.  As for netizens calling for his award to be rescinded, Liu said that he only has a piece of paper and a cup to show and therefore this does not mean much to him.  "Presently, the focus of my attention is on the Tibetan antelopes!"