Tuesday, July 15, 2008

加油 Olympic Preparations

With fewer than 30 days before the opening ceremony of the Beijing Olympics, China notifying the world of ever more preparations.

Yesterday, China Daily published an article about rules for spectators at events. Beijing wants to have a fair games for all athletes. It sounds like the BOCOG wants to avoid its home field advantage. Spectators are banned from having banners (so, no "加油中国! Go China!") or flags of non-participating "countries." I wonder who that last regulation was pointed at (here's a hint: they're not in South America or Africa). It is also not advised to bring babies to events. If you're unsure of the rules when you get here, you can call 12308 and supposedly someone will inform you in English. If you're really confused, I suggest sitting quietly with your hands folded.

In another story, Reuters reports that the government will crack down heavily on pirated goods. There is no word on how widespread this crackdown will be, but the rumor is that it will only affect the host cities: Beijing, Shanghai, Tianjin, and Qingdao. If they brought this to Shenzhen, almost the entire Luohu shopping mall would be closed, as would a large portion of Huaqiang Bei. Maybe Shenzhen will consider this when it hosts the Universiade in 2011.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

The "no banners" policy is likely BOCOG's effort to avoid being embarassed by a big sign that says "Free Tibet", like the one that was unfurled at the diving competition in Athens 2004.

One might assume that the ban on flags of non-participating countries could refer to Tibet as well but actually this policy is aimed directly at Taiwan, whose national flag is not allowed to fly at any Olympic games. There is a special seperate Olympic flag for "Chinese Taipei" athletes that is used to pacify China's government.
It will also be interesting to hear if Beijing fans organized to cheer Chinese Taipei athletes chant either 中国台北 or the alternative 中华台北 which is preferred by Taiwan's government.