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Chinese Bureaucrats Duel Over Right To Regulate WoW 128

Posted by samzenpus
from the great-wall-of-azeroth dept.
upto0013 writes "Chinese bureaucrats are battling each other for the right to regulate World of Warcraft. They hope to gain the political clout and the revenue that comes along with controlling a new industry with potential for explosive growth. 'If you supervise a more dynamic area with a lot of growth potential, you have more budget and more administrative muscle,' said Edward Yu, president of Analysys International, an Internet research firm in Beijing. 'They see this pie is getting bigger and bigger, so it is no wonder different administrations are fighting over pieces of that territory.' It's absurd how orcs and elves (and Moonkin) can affect so many different faraway places."
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Chinese Bureaucrats Duel Over Right To Regulate WoW

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  • by Joe The Dragon (967727) on Thursday November 05, 2009 @01:42AM (#29991338)

    they really want to stop any anti chain chat in game and they want to tax the gold farmers.

  • by fahrbot-bot (874524) on Thursday November 05, 2009 @01:47AM (#29991370)

    Chinese bureaucrats are battling each other for the right to regulate World of Warcraft.

    Can they fight within the game so we can all watch?

    (So. Would being mod'ed a "troll" be good or bad for this thread?)

    • by binarylarry (1338699) on Thursday November 05, 2009 @01:58AM (#29991432)

      It's gonna be a big hit.

      Crouching Tauren, Hidden Draenei

      • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

        by DeadDecoy (877617)
        Nah, it'll probably be boring. The only thing they're gonna do is farm for gold.
      • Re:Can we watch? (Score:5, Insightful)

        by meerling (1487879) on Thursday November 05, 2009 @02:18AM (#29991562)
        I think you mean 'Hidden Nightelf' since they are the ones with Shadowmeld.

        Don't have a problem with the Crouching Tauren thing, since they keep having to duck down to get through most doorways without wedging their horns in the frame... :)
      • Fear and Loathing in Quel'Danas?
        • google 'fear and loathing in Silithus' its hilarious.
        • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

          by fractoid (1076465)
          We had two bags of Fras Siabi's finest, seventy-five pellets of vision dust, five sheets of high-powered mana residue, a saltshaker half-full of R.O.I.D.S, and a whole galaxy of multi-colored uppers, downers, screamers, laughers... Also, a quart of sulfuron slammer, a quart of volatile rum, a case of dark iron ale, a pint of raw embalming fluid, and two dozen amyls. Not that we needed all that for the trip, but once you get into locked a serious drug collection, the tendency is to push it as far as you can.
      • by wish bot (265150)

        Minmatar will kill you all!

        Ok, wrong game.

    • by dkleinsc (563838)

      I was thinking I'd much rather see them fight it out in real life, with a stadium full of raucous fans: 2 bureaucrats enter, 1 bureaucrat leaves!

  • by Bookwyrm (3535) on Thursday November 05, 2009 @02:01AM (#29991450)

    My first mental image was a conference room full of bureaucrats and a duel flag dropping down in the middle.

    Or two opposing teams of bureaucrats playing a Warsong Gulch match.

    Hmm. Does anyone else think this could be the next big MMO? "That's not a red health bar on the boss -- that's how much red tape you have to cut through!"

  • by DNS-and-BIND (461968) on Thursday November 05, 2009 @02:14AM (#29991530) Homepage
    (AP) BEIJING

    OK, I'm going to go out on a limb here and say that Western reporters in Beijing are total dumbasses. They constantly write stories colored by their own blinders they're not even aware that they're wearing. The story doesn't even mention that WoW/Netease problems getting a license in China has been going on for a while now and is nothing new. It's not really even a story, just a space filler - bureaucratic turf wars between communist ministries are news now? Anyhow, I just wanted to mention whenever you see that line at the top of the story, immediately mentally activate your BS detectors. If you want China news, there is no shortage of primary sources in English. Even my own small city district has its own website, with a translated English page. Here is a much better story from Shanghai Daily [chinadaily.com.cn], which lays out the issue in a much clearer fashion:

    ``The GAPP said downloading online games is also an "online publication". GAPP is responsible for reviewing and approving "publications", and the ministry has the right to regulate the "online game" market.''

    Compelling story, eh? This is typical of what comes out of Western media in Beijing.

    • by sopssa (1498795) * <sopssa@email.com> on Thursday November 05, 2009 @02:19AM (#29991564) Journal

      OK, I'm going to go out on a limb here and say that Western reporters in Beijing are total dumbasses. They constantly write stories colored by their own blinders they're not even aware that they're wearing.

      So, pretty much like every reporter and newspaper?

      • by DNS-and-BIND (461968) on Thursday November 05, 2009 @03:43AM (#29991978) Homepage
        The BBC, for one, is renowned for its objectivity and lack of bias.
        • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

          by Anonymous Coward

          The state controlled media has assured us of their lack of bias from of an investigative report they did on themselves assuring us they were unbiased.

        • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

          by khallow (566160)
          For a really simple counterexample to the claim that the BBC is unbiased, what's the BBC's take on the television licence? Would they be indifferent to being thrown to the wolves of capitalism?
          • Re: (Score:1, Insightful)

            by Anonymous Coward

            The BBC as a company is different from the BBC as a broadcaster. The broadcaster may well be unbiased while the company protects its own interests. The difference is obviously that the broadcast is public and the company affairs are behind the scenes.

          • by TheRaven64 (641858) on Thursday November 05, 2009 @09:04AM (#29993600) Journal
            The chairman of the BBC called for the abolition of the TV license last week, in favour of having the BBC funded out of general taxation rather than a specific levy. The BBC has, in the past, covered stories of people protesting about the TV license and has included quotes from people opposed to it. Any time a public figure criticises the BBC, you will find a BBC story covering it, usually giving someone at the BBC an opportunity to respond, but not generally weighted towards the BBC. For some examples, look at this story [bbc.co.uk] and this one [bbc.co.uk].
            • by khallow (566160)
              How about the BBC becoming a private business and having to compete just like any other private business? I assume that the BBC is interested in good use of taxpayer funds rather than just a selfish enlarging of the pool of funds to which it has access.
              • That would clearly cause conflict with their mission as a public service.

                • by khallow (566160)
                  Thus, we have bias.
                  • You seem to be mistaking reporting bias with corporate interest.
                    BBC programs are required to be objective and unbiased, and it seems they live up to that requirement more than most broadcasters.

                    • by khallow (566160)

                      You seem to be mistaking reporting bias with corporate interest.

                      No. I consider corporate interest ("corporate" in the sense of group not in the sense of corporation) of a news media organization to be a subcategory of reporting bias. And I am not mistaken in this consideration.

                      BBC programs are required to be objective and unbiased, and it seems they live up to that requirement more than most broadcasters.

                      I don't even see the point of making statements like the above. It doesn't matter what they are "required" to do. Being funded by a particular tax introduces a bias in their outlook that can't be removed with a "requirement". For some reason, I routinely read on Slashdot, smug yet naive boasting a

                    • "corporate" in the sense of group not in the sense of corporation

                      Three guesses what the "C" in "BBC" stands for.

                      I consider corporate interest of a news media organization to be a subcategory of reporting bias.

                      WTF?

                      And I am not mistaken in this consideration.

                      Wow. Feeling self-confident today, aren't we?

                      I don't even see the point of making statements like the above. It doesn't matter what they are "required" to do. Being funded by a particular tax introduces a bias in their outlook that can't be removed with a "requirement".

                      You seem to have a propositional fallacy.

                      As an aside, I've googled "BBC bias" [google.com] and have come up (though trivial effort) with several examples of BBC bias, including favoring "political correctness" [wnd.com] and "liberal culture" [timesonline.co.uk], a tendency to assign racists [blogspot.com] to the right hand side of the political spectrum, and slanting the coverage of some religious groups [blogspot.com].

                      Way to go. You link to an article by News Corp, the largest, most biased media organisation in the world which jumps at every chance to take a stab at the BBC.
                      Your other links are to a blog that is fixated on the BBCs coverage of the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, despite being the only major western news organisation with an extensive network in Palestine.

                      But if you think about it, everyone employed at the BBC is paid in large part from a tax. Why wouldn't they be so biased?

                      People will have

                    • by khallow (566160)

                      I don't even see the point of making statements like the above. It doesn't matter what they are "required" to do. Being funded by a particular tax introduces a bias in their outlook that can't be removed with a "requirement".

                      You seem to have a propositional fallacy.

                      Only if the statement isn't strictly true.

                    • And it isn't.

                    • by tsm_sf (545316)
                      I don't disagree regarding your take on bias at the BBC, but your links could be a little more robust. Wanting to see "both sides" of an anti-poverty campaign, global warming, and multiculturalism doesn't strike me as an intelligent argument for bias.
                • by smithmc (451373) *

                  That would clearly cause conflict with their mission as a public service.

                  Once upon a time, all corporations were viewed as having a public service responsibility. [sigh]

      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by grking (965233)

        Isn't this just a cynical way of describing ones "perspective"? Every mind perceives the world from it's own perspective, has it's own world view coloured by it's experiences.

        Sure you can compare perspective to "blinders" and call those people "dumb asses" but they are the same blinders worn by your dumb ass.

    • by Inf0phreak (627499) on Thursday November 05, 2009 @03:32AM (#29991934)
      Blizzard and their Chinese partners haven't found the right people to bribe yet.

      Or maybe they found the right people, but they're asking too much for CWoW to be profitable?
  • /roll 100
  • The agriculture regulatory agencies want to have their say in the matter so they can include gold farming in the next Five Year Plan.
    • by jlar (584848)

      ...now what if we establish a small backyard gold furnace in every commune and in each urban neighbourhood. I believe that will be a great leap forward in the gold farming economy.

  • "It's absurd how orcs and elves (and Moonkin) can affect so many different faraway places."

    A truly obsessed WoWHead would know that the proper term is "Boomkin."

    • by Canazza (1428553)

      You dare call is Oomkins and we will drop a Starfall on your collective arses.

      • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

        by borizz (1023175)
        How? You're always OOM. There's no boom in oom.
      • by Talderas (1212466)

        Oomkins, Huntards. Fucking rogues.

  • New race? (Score:3, Funny)

    by Krneki (1192201) on Thursday November 05, 2009 @04:21AM (#29992132)
    Does this mean I can play as a Chinese bureaucrat now? And I guess the special spell would be Silence your opponent.
  • Worse than that... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by plastick (1607981) on Thursday November 05, 2009 @04:23AM (#29992146)
    Actually, I had some in depth talks with some friends from China about WoW.

    They still only have level 70 because the government STILL hasn't "filtered" every last quest in WotLK for any themes that might contradict the Chinese government policies. I'm dead serious. The "censorship" is that horrific.

    Not only that, but there are some really weird censorship issues you wouldn't expect. For example, there are no undead in Chinese WoW because the Chinese government won't allow any human bones to be shown in the game. So anywhere you see a skeleton, it had to be removed by Blizzard.
    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by thetagger (1057066)

      Not only that, but there are some really weird censorship issues you wouldn't expect. For example, there are no undead in Chinese WoW because the Chinese government won't allow any human bones to be shown in the game. So anywhere you see a skeleton, it had to be removed by Blizzard.

      Well, if I made a MMORPG where everybody is naked and targeted it to the 13+ audience, I bet I would have to make some changes before it was published in the US. It is ultimately my problem if I designed thousands of NPCs while ignoring the culture of my target market.

      Some things are cultural. Don't expect them to make a lot of sense. If Blizzard had planned for the Chinese market from the start, instead of undead you would have a different race and they wouldn't have to change a thing.

      • by DigitalSorceress (156609) on Thursday November 05, 2009 @10:55AM (#29994832)

        Hmm if it's truly a cultural issue, then wouldn't it be a self-regulating feedback loop?

        In other words, if you're that offended by the game diong something repugnant to your culture, you won't play... end of problem.

        It seems to me that the whole bones thing may go against certain cultural norms, but that the government is the one who has a problem with it.

        I honestly don't know enough about Chinese cultural norms to know if showing bones is equivelent (to the Chinese) as your hypothetical MMORPG would be to America.

        I keep trying to think about this from an outsider's perspective, but I keep getting back to "dude, it's just bones. if it bothers me, I won't look, but it doesn't so where's the harm?". There are one or two substitutions for the word "bones" that you could add that would make it illegal in the US, and where most members of our culture would even agree that it should be a crime.

        Cultural relativism is a damn minefield.

        I'll just go back to LFM H ToC 25 now and be happy that my culture allows me to waste my evenings and weekends in this manner.

    • I don't see what's so hard about this Naxxaramas instance. It's completely empty!
  • Seeing that they are both rogues (politicians) we'll have to wait and see who get caught out of stealth first.
  • by Kupfernigk (1190345) on Thursday November 05, 2009 @04:53AM (#29992298)
    Instead of warlords fighting for turf, you have civil servants fighting for budget. Progress. You also have the advantage that, unlike the US and the UK, you already have an overbearing, censorship-obsessed, fascist* slave state, so you don't have the civil servants fighting to get the budget to create one.

    * anyone who thinks China is Communist doesn't understand either (a) the meaning of communism or (b) history.

    • by Nathrael (1251426)

      China can't be communist! Communists aren't evil fascists like China!

      No true Scotsman...?

    • Instead of warlords fighting for turf, you have civil servants fighting for budget

      Civil servants fighting for budget in China has been going on for several thousand years.

      • by ljgshkg (1223086)
        Civil servants in this whole world have all been fighting for budget for thousand of years and try to waste/use-up whatever is left over before the next budget time, which continue today everywhere. lol
  • ...will the Chinese WoW turn into Evony?

  • This is government at its simplest and most honest: the struggle for power and influence, consequences to the people be damned. Let those who would expand the powers of their own governments forget this at their peril.
  • I guess... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by jipn4 (1367823) on Thursday November 05, 2009 @07:25AM (#29993068)

    US bureaucrats are also falling over each other to regulate whatever they can because it gives them power. Bureaucracies work the same the world over, communist or not.

  • get real already (Score:3, Insightful)

    by onyxruby (118189) <onyxruby@@@comcast...net> on Thursday November 05, 2009 @09:48AM (#29994082)
    This is about who gets to be in a position of demanding bribes to allow WOW in their country. This is about good old fashioned greed and doesn't have a damn thing to do with Orcs or Elves. Since this is seen as potentially very lucrative, people will fight to be in a position to exploit this. It's fundamentally no different than any other fight for territory.
  • I know the game is far from over, but I have seen the start of a movement of people just fed up of playing so much for so long, and wanting something different...WoW had its day, and even though I am a die hard fan, have my account and play alost everyday (.5 to 1.5 hours) I have to say I think WoWs days are limited, they are taking too much time between expansions (being the limit for lvling is rumored to be 100) so the next expansion is lvl 80 - 85, instead of the usual 10 lvls.....I think this is a mista

    • by pwfffff (1517213)

      "25$ character transfer, 25$ character name change, then 15$ per month to play, 50$ per expansion or game.....it adds up quick as being the most expensive game to play EVER."

      First off your prices are wrong. $15 to change your name, and xpacs are only $50 on release day.

      $20 for the game, $20 for the first xpac, and $40 for the second xpac equals $80 to buy the game outright, today. In order to match the price of a SINGLE set of golf clubs, you'd need to buy (after the game) a name change, a character transf

      • by geekoid (135745)

        Context, context.

        He is talking about computer games. I mean, come one.

        Golf is now where near as expensive as owning a football team, but that would make no sense in this context, would it?

        • by pwfffff (1517213)

          He said 'game' not 'video game', and if I was to assume what he meant from the context, I would have assumed 'mmorpg' and not 'video game' in general anyways.

          And it's not like your nitpick actually has anything to do with my point. Judging game to game, $20 for WoW is pretty fucking good, even if you only get the first 60 levels and all the dungeons that go with it. Spend another $20 for BC, and you get many more hours of play, new dungeons, a new continent, etc. Now you've spent less than you would have bu

          • by Fred IV (587429)

            Anyone who thinks WoW is expensive by any metric needs to spend some quality time with a math book.

            WoW only looks like a bargain if you compare it with other disposable forms of entertainment with limited replay value....compared to buying a new console game every month WoW is a great deal. Compared to buying a chess set, WoW is a terrible waste of money in terms of both potential hours of entertainment and opportunity for meaningful social interaction.

      • Most expensive video game, you dolt.
        As for pricing, I guess in your neck of the woods, but I am telling you what spending is like HERE, in my neck of the woods, no, expansion packs are 50$ until 1 year has passed minimum, so the real hardcore players that all have their friends raiding within the first week, all the new raids and dungeons make you feel like your totally useless if you can't help out on the raids, so you go and buy the expansion that same week (not a year later when it is at 20$ as you say).

    • by geekoid (135745)

      ".5 to 1.5"

      The barely qualifies you as a player~

      Anyways, whoever gets WoW, will probably get any future games.

      • Most with a normal life and a girlfriend they intend on keeping,
        don't play more then that, else they look like addicts....
        and yes I still plan on getting cataclysm....next wow expansion...
        I may get a splinter cell MMO or hitman MMO if they ever come out with one, however, I have been playing WoW exclusively for the last 3 years now, with much enjoyment, but without touching
        any other games, as I just a have no more time then that to play.

        ps- before you reply again about the time spent playing = a REAL player

    • Right now, it's late in the expansion and here's the problems that I'm seeing:

      - The "B" team is obviously in charge. So many immersive RPG elements have been removed this year (3 days between server moves or name/race changes). And they continue to remove any sorts of barriers that make the game world feel real and not just a grind fest of teleporting to an instance then teleporting to another instance.

      - The ToC raid (3rd in the series, Naxx -> Ulduar -> ToC) was a piss poor "toss the players in
      • by SL Baur (19540)

        Most players have gotten all of the alts they could want to level 80. Most have finished grinding out all WotLK reps to exalted that they care about and are basically biding their time (or trying to keep up with the raid progression).

        Well, I guess I'm in the minority then. I'm still working on getting my first level 80 to exalted with the Wyrmrest Accord and with any luck and time this coming weekend, I'll get my 2nd level 80, but hey, I have a life.

      • I agree, but blizzard having made over close to a billion dollars off this game alone, with all the expansions, and time cards etc...etc... I have to say, when I have an issue and they tell me to just live with it, or when the server is down for a couple of days, and they do not bother giving a few extra days to your account to compensate, I have to say I am pretty darn furious, they are greedy, and the fact they keep milking their players trying to limit the lvls per expansion....what gives.

        All I got to sa

    • by snuf23 (182335)

      Is it just me or has the WoW is dying meme replaced the BSD is dying one?

  • Protip: Roll a flavor of the month class. I don't know which one it is but you can count the nerf threads on the wow pvp forums to figure it out.
  • So; if a Western gamer spots a Red Chinese chekist in-game and chops him down, is it considered an act of war?
    ];)

  • heh (Score:1, Offtopic)

    by geekoid (135745)

    It's absurd how Orcs and elves (and Moonkin) can affect so many different faraway places."

    You mean like Hobbiton?

    Stupid Jackson missing the ENTIRE point of the book by changing the Hobbiton ending.

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