Internet Journalism in Action – Chinese Police and CounterStrike

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So, today on Kotaku, there was this story: China: Chinese Police Like Counter-Strike, which is pretty hilarious. It’s a little article about how cops in Tianjin had a 3-day CS tourney, and they are passing it off as counterterrorism training. Personally, I think they just wanted to have some fun, but whatever. It’s sourced from a People’s Daily online article, which has some pretty good quotes. An amusing read, overall.

So, there’s something I might have mentioned in passing, but hardly worth its own blog post… but then later I was on Digg, and saw this: Chinese Police Like Counter-Strike. The Digg article links to this blog post on a HALO fansite:

Which copies the Kotaku blog post word for word, excepting one minor edit (which we’ll get to in a minute). It’s an interesting trickle down effect of news. People’s Daily conducts some actual real world journalism, writes an article which gets translated into English, which gets picked up by a gaming blog that summarizes it. Then some other news site republishes Kotaku’s article (they do cite their source, at least) and gets it submitted to Digg, which drives tons of traffic and earns them money through ads.

In its essence, this is a complete cycle of one of the lousier sides of internet journalism, where people make money from other people’s work. In the end though, I’m sure everybody is a little happier. Digg gets used for what it’s for and makes money, QSK makes money, Kotaku is already well known and gets another link to them and makes money, and the whoever wrote the article for People’s Daily sees the fruits of their efforts spread across the internet.

Still, QSK getting the benefit of all the Digg traffic seems a little off to me. Well, ultimately, that’s kind of what the internet is about, anyway.

Final note – there was one minor edit to the QSK version of the Kotaku article, which I found hilarious. At the very end of her article, Maggie Green (the original Kotaku blogger) adds

“Now all they need is an outpost in Second Life to recruit officers, and they’ll be in business.”

Well, I guess HALO fans aren’t necessarily as aware of all the newfangled stuff out there in the series of tubes, so the QSK blogger felt it necessary to add a parenthetical to explain what Second Life was:

“Now all they need is an outpost in Second Life (an online sex rpg) to recruit officers, and they’ll be in business.”

Hilariously true.

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