Friday, 22 January 2010

Chinese Internet Rant and Index Explanation

Ever since returning to Poland at the beginning of the month, my days have been occupied with learning and short journeys on the tram, while my nights are spent cutting, splicing and tinkering with the remaining films for The Learning English Video Project. I am most excited about the way they are turning out; particularly 'Insights from China', which still has no official release date. This particular film is like no other from the series and, although I should be disinclined to choose a particular favorite, 'Insights..' has something very special about it. Due to the current commentaries on China's Internet situation (nobody in mainland China will be able to read this blog for instance) I am curious to see what the reaction will be concerning the film... This very issue in itself troubles me somewhat. Of course the Internet is censored, as different countries permit different things to be made available. No other country has grabbed national headlines as much as China has with regard to Internet strictness and that may be the source of my frustration. The Chinese government claimed that the Americans were imposing 'information imperialism', while Americans condemned the Chinese decision to censor Google searches on subjects such as Tiananmen Square and Tibet... It is well known that there is information (digital or otherwise) that is not made available to the American, British etc. public and so it is seemingly impossible that the aforementioned Western governments should criticise the Chinese in the fashion in which they have chosen. I am not shocked by this criticism, just disappointed... 

I have been collecting grades for the first semester of my MA this week. The Polish system is an interesting one; an 'Index' (a pocket sized green book with personal information, a passport photo and space for grades) is supplied, wherein one writes one's subject information. The teachers for each subject then fill in the Index and hand it back to you complete with their signature. So far my marks are showing the results of a fruitful semester that I have thoroughly enjoyed, although I may have been a little naive in thinking it possible to study during the day and edit at night with their being possible side affects...  I may now consider myself a polyphasic sleeper - something new for 2010.

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