World Webby News: China Olympics and the interwebs
Lots of Interwebs news with relation to China these days, in part because of the upcoming Olympics, and in part because China is a big big deal.
The biggest story along these lines is that Olympics highlights will be made available via YouTube. While it’s being called a “financial deal [that is] is tiny compared to the traditional TV rights deals,” this is surely yet another sign that we’re entering an age in which the Internet is directly competing against broadcast television.
Also in the news:
Google is rolling out a free music service that could compete with popular Chinese search engine Baidu.com. Again, we’re seeing another intersection between China and Google (Google owns YouTube). Probably not a coincidence that Google has set its sights on getting as deeply enmeshed into the Chinese side of the web as possible.
Also not a coincidence that Internet companies are falling in line to engage in a “voluntary code of conduct” in China and other “restrictive countries.”
With over 30,000 reporters covering the upcoming Olympics in China, drumming up an original angle is at a premium. So much so that Beijing “Internet pundit” Kaiser Kuo is advising foreign journalists to be careful in their use of tired or inappropriate puns, such as “coming out party” or “great leap forward.” (And this is coming from someone who writes a monthly column called Ich Bin Ein Beijinger?)
Meanwhile, in other world web news, a guy is being jailed for four years for using malware to spy on a 17-year-old girl he met in a chat room. And Thailand has halted the sale of the popular Grand Theft Auto videogame after a teen blamed it for the murder of a taxi driver.
And to avoid ending on a downer note: scouts in the UK are using Facebook to keep in touch and get their virtual scouting on, and the French are illegally downloading as many movies as they are paying to see.