Archive | Things Around China

Chinese Perspective on South China Sea

Yesterday The Hague released its ruling on China’s questionable claim to the South China Sea, and as expected, it was not in China’s favor. Also as expected this has resulted in shrill cries of victimization from China, depicting itself as the target of bullying by the United States and Japan.

Below an example – a comic which I came across today. The original version in Chinese is on the right and a version which I translated is on the left:

Chinese comic on South China Sea

The South China Sea debate is leading to a lot of expat discomfort, as China predictably pulls nationalist strings to promote the “East versus West” narrative. It is not good for anyone but on this particular issue, neither side can step down.

This is a good overview of the current situation: No Stepping Back by Wu’er Kaiti.

Published on July 13, 2016

Does Chinese Internet Culture Exist?

This week I attended the inaugural “Chengdu Internet Culture Convention”.

Throughout my time there, meeting people and listening to speeches about the development of Chengdu’s IT infrastructure, I was plagued with a single thought: can Chinese internet culture exist?

In the TED clip above, a Chinese blogger goes into great detail about what the “Chinese internet” entails. Is the formula below accurate?

Chinese internet culture = block each and every international Web 2.0 service, and then clone it for a Chinese audience.

This is something that you will never hear inside China. It takes Chinese people traveling to far-away places like Edinburgh Scotland to make a case such as this, which undermines everything that the Chinese internet claims to be.

Published on July 31, 2012

One Night in Beijing

On Friday afternoon I flew to Beijing to give a presentation at a mobile developers conference at the Shangrila hotel about iOS (iPhone and iPad) app monetization. Why’d I speak there? Our company, Tap4Fun, is officially the highest grossing iOS developer in all of China so far this year. Because of this, a lot of attention is on our development process and business model. We’re conducting interviews on a nearly daily basis (today CCTV was in our office filming). Exciting times.

Here are some photos from my day in Beijing:

Feet in Taxi

Waited in line for 30+ minutes to get a taxi at Beijing International, the biggest airport in the world

Shangrila Hotel Beijing

Beijing Shangrila

The first thing I noticed inside the lobby of the Beijing Shangrila

Meeting with the designer of, a streaming music service that takes Pandora to the next level

Lecture Hall Namecard

Sitting at the front of the lecture hall

Lecture Hall in Beijing

The conference featured three lecture halls roughly of equal size, hosting thousands of attendees

Speaking in Beijing

Speaking on stage at the conference, Saturday July 7th

Beijing Airport

Walking through Beijing International Airport and the line to catch a taxi

Published on July 9, 2012

China Blogcast Interview About Music in China

Big Love Music FestivalEarlier this week I was contacted by China Blogcast, a new podcast which interviews prominent China bloggers about happenings in Mainland China. The event that led to the interview was the Big Love music festival post on Chengdu Living: Chengdu’s Big Love Music Festival Turns to Big Scorn.

In the podcast, I answer questions about the event, the music industry in China, and about performing in China as an American. Check it out right here: China Blogcast Episode 6: Big Love

Download Link

You can download the interview MP3 right here or subscribe to the China Blogcast on iTunes.

Published on July 5, 2012

Song of the Day #122: A Dedication

Washed Out – A Dedication

The last few weeks I’ve been re-adjusting to life overseas, and it’s been more fun than I had anticipated. The prospect of returning to my normal life after three incredible months of embracing the unknown was sobering in a way, but it wasn’t long before China reminded me of something important: you never know what’s going to happen.

Shorts and t-shirts in Chengdu. It’s summertime.

Published on June 12, 2012