The Economist Pwned by China! has an interesting article called Translating “The Economist” Behind China’s Great Firewall. It tells how underground online organization the Eco Team translates every Economist article into Chinese and puts it online.

The greatest part was a line left by commenter Felipe Li:

> We’re in your websites, translatin’ your language.

Via Hank.


John Pasden

John is a Shanghai-based linguist and entrepreneur, founder of AllSet Learning.


  1. Wow, what a tremendous piece of journalism, and in blog form to boot! I’m going to have to subscribe to this guy…

    It’s interesting you chose to highlight this today (to me at least). I’m studying international finance under a professor who’s also the co-ordinator of our university’s Chinese study abroad program. To say the least, it’s illuminating and I often find myself thinking of you and the cultural lessons I’ve learned from your blog over the years. Isn’t that sweet? 🙂

    Anyway, I’m far from an expert on field, but there’s some really fascinating things going on with Chinese economic policy. In particular I found the fact your currency’s exchange rate is “controlled” to be intriguiging. It’s easy to view as a simple difference in policy, but it’s eventual scope is massive. The whole butterfly farts causing a hurricane thing…

    Obviously, there’s so much more to it than that; I definitely have a lot to learn!

    Keep em coming John!

  2. it could be a very good movie. remember The Net, starring Sandra Bullock? One big internet company sells a software that enables them to rule the world basically.
    Some obscure burocrat in the Chinese government could be the arch-villain. Chinese guys could be the villains and the heroes, but I would prefer Chinese ladies on the main roles.
    Hollywood isn’t very creative though… they like to portray internet villains as Bill Gates lookalikes.

  3. […] the Economist from cover to cover each week. Here’s a look, in English, at their work (h/t Sinosplice). […]

  4. […] the Economist from cover to cover each week. Here’s a look, in English, at their work (h/t Sinosplice). […]


  6. Ha! I love lolcats/lol-speak …

    Also, what an amazing amount of dedication these people have! Thanks for sharing!

  7. All Your English Words Are Belong To Us!! evil laugh 🙂

  8. This is a great project/endeavor. But… this says it best:

    “There’s one general rule: If the article involves any sensitive topics, if you’re not sure whether it’s permitted or not, please don’t risk any chance by publishing it.”

    And, correct me if I am wrong, but this rule applies to their special “protected” forum…where translated China articles can be published. So ANY articles related to China are not published in the genersal site, and only “non-sensitive” articles are published in the protected forum.

    I’m not flogging the censorship horse here.. it’s just: sigh.. a little dispiriting, no?

  9. The funny part is: the Economist doesn’t have a clue about Chinese Economy.

Leave a Reply