Small election, not many hurt

Lost in translation

EastSouthWestNorth (EWSN) is undoubtedly one of the most ambitious English language blogs in Hong Kong - what Roland Soong mainly does is translate newspaper articles and blog postings from Chinese into English. This ought to be a useful public service for those us too lazy to learn Chinese, because the harsh reality is that Dr. Johnson's famous remark about dogs walking on their hind legs is all too apt when it comes to the English language media here, so it's quite important to know what is being said in the Chinese media (and Spike magazine had it right when they included articles translated from Next and Apple Daily).

Unfortunately, the problem I have always had with EWSN is that Roland is so obviously biased against the pan-democrats.  That's fine, of course, and if he chooses to spend his own time on translating articles and publishing a blog then he's fully entitled to say whatever he likes. 

However, what it means in practice is that I don't take his blog very seriously because I am always conscious of the not-so-hidden agenda.  For example, when he wrote at great length about the varying estimates for the number of marchers on anti-Tung, pro-democracy rallies I found it impossible to take him seriously as an independent expert (as he portrayed himself).

Now it seems that he has mis-represented a blog posting that referred to Alan Leong's campaign for the CE election, and Tom Legg is on the case (The Perils Of Taking Roland Soong Seriously): 

Some time ago, I learned a lesson to always check originals before trusting a translation from ESWN's Roland Soong. It was an embarrassing episode. It's one I'd rather not make again.

Simon at SimonWorld hasn't felt so burned... yet.

Would it surprise you if I suggested that you go investigate the entry for yourself before relying on Roland's translation/interpretation?

Unfortunately the best I can do when translating from Chinese to English is to use AltaVista or Google's translation tools, and they aren't much help here.  So I'll just have to assume that Tom knows what he's talking about!!   


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Deep Throat

The blog is a front for the New China New Agency (Disinformation Department).

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