Please create an account to participate in the Slashdot moderation system

 



Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
It's funny.  Laugh.

Beijing Newspaper Spoofed by The Onion 281

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the eat-that-suckers dept.
mattsucks writes "Reuters is reporting a story about the Beijing Evening News. Apparently, they too believe that everything they read on the internet is true, republishing a story from The Onion. Or at least one of their freelance writers believes it...." This is absolutely great.
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

Beijing Newspaper Spoofed by The Onion

Comments Filter:
  • by magicsquid (85985) on Saturday June 08, 2002 @08:33AM (#3664654) Homepage
    At least they weren't fooled by stories like "This Just In: Bill Gates Buys Evil From Satan" or "Death Star Opens Day Care Center."

    I can imagine them running through the streets of Beijing saying "Look at the size of that thing!" and "That's no moon!"
  • Or (Score:5, Insightful)

    by daghlian (113201) on Saturday June 08, 2002 @08:33AM (#3664655) Homepage Journal
    I'd actually like to see someone take the Onion's kids explanation [theonion.com] of why the Sept. terrorist attacks happened seriously.
    • Re:Or (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Boulder Geek (137307) <archer@goldenagewireless.net> on Saturday June 08, 2002 @09:27AM (#3664768)
      I'd actually like to see someone take the Onion's kids explanation [theonion.com] of why the Sept. terrorist attacks happened seriously.

      Good point. This is actually a very serious introduction to some of the key points of modern Islamic fundamentalism. When I first read it I went looked up Qutb. No other major media outlet that I know of has bothered to give people the starting point to actually find out how and why bin Laden came to be.

      Ignore The Onion at your peril.

      • Re:Or (Score:4, Insightful)

        by ChaosDiscord (4913) on Saturday June 08, 2002 @10:45AM (#3664928) Homepage Journal
        I'd actually like to see someone take the Onion's kids explanation of why the Sept. terrorist attacks happened seriously.

        For anyone who hasn't seen it, the article "Talking To Your Child About the WTC Attack [theonion.com]" is online. In fact, their entire "Holy Fucking Shit: America Under Attack [theonion.com]" It's the single most brilliant issue of the Onion ever. It captured the fear, the uncertainly, the random lashing out. It reflected America in a way that no other news source had done. It managed to be respectful and sad, yet very funny. It was exactly what America needed.

      • Here is a better link [theonion.com]:

        Bush Sr. Apologizes To Son For Funding Bin Laden In '80s MIDLAND, TX-- Former president George Bush issued an apology to his son Monday for advocating the CIA's mid-'80s funding of Osama bin Laden, who at the time was resisting the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan. "I'm sorry, son," Bush told President George W. Bush. "We thought it was a good idea at the time because he was part of a group fighting communism in Central Asia. We called them 'freedom fighters' back then. I know it sounds weird. You sort of had to be there." Bush is still deliberating over whether to tell his son about the whole supporting-Saddam Hussein-against-Iran thing.

  • by Budgreen (561093) <<moc.liamg> <ta> <dnalivah.hsoj>> on Saturday June 08, 2002 @08:34AM (#3664658) Homepage
    On the radio lastnight as I was driving home.and almost crashed...

    but anyways I guess this just shows that you have to choose a source carefully.. I mean who really needs a new capital with a retracting dome and stadium seating?

  • by dontod (571749) on Saturday June 08, 2002 @08:34AM (#3664660) Homepage
    Mr T to pity fool. Don.
  • The Story (Score:1, Interesting)

    by bckspc (172870)

    Paper Falls for Gag in Humor Tabloid

    June 07, 2002 09:59 AM ET Email this article Printer friendly version

    BEIJING (Reuters) - Beijing's most popular newspaper has unwittingly republished a bogus story about U.S. Congress threats to skip town for Memphis or Charlotte unless Washington builds them a new Capitol building with a retractable dome.

    The source? America's celebrated spoof tabloid, the Onion.

    The Beijing Evening News, which claims a circulation of 1.25 million, translated portions of the Onion's tall tale word-for-word in the international news page of its June 3 edition.

    The reprinted version of the May 29 article, which parodies Congress as a Major League Baseball squad, also copied the Onion's would-be blueprint for a new legislative home that resembles a ballpark. "Don't get us wrong: We love the drafty old building," the Onion quoted House Speaker Dennis Hastert as saying.

    "But the hard reality is, it's no longer suitable for a world-class legislative branch. The sight lines are bad, there aren't enough concession stands or bathrooms, and the parking is miserable."

    The spoof from the brazen entertainment tabloid, which dubs itself "America's finest news source," apparently took in the Evening News.
    "The story was written by one of our freelance writers," an editor at the Evening News told Reuters on Friday. "His stuff has been pretty much reliable before."

    The editor said he had received other calls from readers about the article. "They were also suspicious of the contents."

    Told the story came from the Onion and was not true, the editor said, "We would first have to check that out. If it's indeed fake, I'm sure there will be some form of correction."

  • by ringbarer (545020) on Saturday June 08, 2002 @08:34AM (#3664664) Homepage Journal

    In case anyone's interested, the Onion article is here [theonion.com]! (No goatse.cx links, sorry!)

    TOTALLY believable!

    • Although this story is funny, I think its also a reflection of how the Chinese view the US. They view Americans as shallow and self-centered, and a story like this would jump out at them to confirm thier beliefs. Its like they wanted it to be true so they could say "See what dumb things those Americans are doing now!"
  • by gambit3 (463693) on Saturday June 08, 2002 @08:36AM (#3664667) Homepage Journal
    In my high school...

    Teacher: Gambit, you didn't write this!

    Gambit: uh, well...

    Teacher: You COPIED this, didn't you?

    Gambit: Well, maybe a little...

    Teacher: That's PLAGIARISM! Where do you think you're going to end up if you just copy other people's article??

    Gambit: Hopefully on Slashdot?
    • It flows both ways, I've seen a number of books in English with material ripped straight out of Chinese books. This will happen until there are enough people reading both Chinese and Englsh sources. BTW, reading Chinese isn't as hard as you think. After all, you've learned all the nasty little icons on your desktop and productivity applications. Besides, it may be useful or essential knowledge for computing depending on how OSS development goes in China & E. Asia.

      Working with some european and east european mathematics journals brought up an anecdote about a mathematician who'd made a multi-decade academic career though translating material from an east european mathematician and publishing it in the west under his own name. His day was rained on when the Iron Curtain came down and the original material became available.

      • After all, you've learned all the nasty little icons on your desktop and productivity applications.

        Speak for yourself, dude. I got this key on my keyboard (actually 2 of them right next to the "alt" keys) that have an icon I think is supposed to be a landscaping truck turned into a "just married" limo dragging a bunch of cans driven by some drunk swerving a bit. Never have been able to figure out what they are for. Press either one, nothing happens. ;)
  • <SA> If you read it on the internet, you know its true! </SA>

    (Disclaimer: Yes someone else probably said it first. But SA was the one that taught me it)
    • Interesting sidenote to that attitude:

      In, shall we say, less-developed countries, there is very low internet penetration. But the people who do have computers also have printers, and internet "news" from such stellar paragons of reliability as azzam.com and kavkaz.org is printed out and widely distributed. However, due to the internet's high-tech reputation as a worldwide communications net, simple peasants and villagers, as well as educated people who should know better, ascribe a credibility to internet news stories that Westerners would find to be astounding. After all, the internet runs on computers - how could such amazing machines tell lies all by themselves? Plus, the Islamic media would never lie, lying is against the teachings of the Koran. You should see the fantastic stories that are taken as Allah's honest truth, such as the hundreds of American special forces being held prisoner by the Taliban, and the AQ fighting unit formed by aforesaid prisoners who converted to Islam.

      I can't emphasize this enough - for these people, this is what is happening. There was a warning telephoned to all the Jews who worked in the WTC not to come to work that day. America is conspiring with India against Pakistan in order to open another front against Islam. In truth, the Islamists have been trying to start the first Indo-Pak war of this century frantically (parliament attack, kashmir provocations) so they can depose the Musharraf regime and sieze Pakstan's nuclear weapons for their own use. And use them they will...a nuclear deterrent only works if the other guy wants to live. We're losing the information war, badly.

      A similar situation existed during operation Allied Force in Serbia. Serbian citizens believe to this day that they shot down dozens of Allied aircraft, including a B-2 and several F-117s, as well as capturing a damaged stealth fighter intact (it was immediately shipped to Russia for examination, of course, which is why it's not on display at the same Serbian military museum where the fragments of Capt. O'Grady's F-16 are).

      • But this wasn't islam, this was china. Large difference, though your paragraph is correct, just not completely relevant.
  • by nuggz (69912)
    The onion has some of the best news there is anyway.

    Actually I really enjoy how they poke fun at the ridiculousness of things that go on today. And they also do a good job, I really loved that "God clarifies his 'Thou shalt not kill' rule" article they had back in october.
    • Ask a conspiracy theorist... the onion's version of Ask Slasdot.

      Check it out [theonion.com]
    • Actually I really enjoy how they poke fun at the ridiculousness of things that go on today. And they also do a good job, I really loved that "God clarifies his 'Thou shalt not kill' rule" article they had back in october.

      It was the September 27-October 3, 2001 issue, to be exact - the first published issue following September 11. I saved the paper copy of that issue - probably some of the best work that The Onion has ever produced. "Hijackers Surprised to Find Selves In Hell," "American Life Turns Into Bad Jerry Bruckheimer Movie," along with the article mentioned above.

      As you read through it, you can just see the raw emotions in every article in that issue - it reminds me every day I look at it what that day was like.

      • Holy Fucking Shit (Score:5, Interesting)

        by Bonker (243350) on Saturday June 08, 2002 @09:58AM (#3664836)
        As you read through it, you can just see the raw emotions in every article in that issue - it reminds me every day I look at it what that day was like.

        The Holy Fucking Shit [theonion.com] edition of The Onion was one of the finest pieces of literature serious or satirical published about the September 11 bombings. Before the HFS edition, I merely thought The Onion was funny. Afterwards, I respected The Onion.

        In the middle of all the hysteria, screaming panic, and horror, The Onion *dared* to go in and examine the ridiculousness of not only what had happened but what was happening because of it.

        Good work guys!
        • That's what I thought too. I actually read a "critique" shortly afterwards from some dipshit who thought that the onion had changed and wasn't being as edgy as they normally are. It was a delicate situation, and they managed to make people laugh about it without being disrespectful. I had been reading the onion for years, but after that, much like you, I actually *respected* them for more than just their humour.
  • Half of congress will want the dome open and half will want it closed.

    Oh well I guess they'll be to busy arguing about it to come up with any more dumb laws like the DMCA ;0)
  • Another news link (Score:2, Informative)

    by Skreech (131543)
    Another online news story about this is here [sfgate.com].
  • by Gatesninny.net (565318) on Saturday June 08, 2002 @08:41AM (#3664684)
    In breaking news, Beijing Evening News reporting early election results from elections in the United States of America:

    CowboyNeal, Q.E.D. 20%
    a^2+b^2=c^2 17%
    algore 0.41%

    (source:slashdot.org)

  • by GoatPigSheep (525460) on Saturday June 08, 2002 @08:43AM (#3664688) Homepage Journal
    More than once Slashdot has published stories from questionable sources which turned out to be completely false. Although it's inevitable for any site that uses reader submitions to sometimes publish hoax stories as it's hard to read every submition that is sent. However I've read many stories in newspapers here (not in china) that came from sources about as or less credible than the onion. China is relatively new to the internet so I suppose they haven't figured out which sites are the joke ones yet.

    I guesse we could say: Beijing Newspaper. YHBT. YHL. HAND.


    • The difference is that real journalists attribute everything. Since the editor at the Chinese newspaper wasn't aware of the Onion, etc. it appears this freelance writer simply plagarized the entire story. Slashdot does not plagarize stories because it ONLY references other published articles with the exception of
      Jonathan Katz's work [weeklyworldnews.com], which very well could be plagarizing pieces appearing in the Weekly World News. I'd strongly suspect this writer won't be working with that newspaper again.
      • Slashdot does not plagarize stories because it ONLY references other published articles with the exception of Jonathan Katz's work, which very well could be plagarizing pieces appearing in the Weekly World News.

        There's no need to trash Jonathan Katz's reputation. After all, he's a professional therapist, [imdb.com] not a journalist. "Jon Katz," perhaps?
    • More than once Slashdot has published stories from questionable sources which turned out to be completely false.

      I just got an IM from somebody replying to this:

      HELLO MY AMERICAN FRIENDs! THIS IS JUNIS FROM AFGHANISTAN! I AM NOW ABLE TO HAVE MUCH BETTER INTERNETTING, THANKS TO THE BANDWIDTH PROVIDED BY THE GREAT AMERICAN LIBERATORS! LONG LIVE THE COMMODORE 64!

      Eat your heart out, JonKatz. I still haven't seen a retraction or an apology for perpetrating that one against our collective intellect.
    • Although it's inevitable for any site that uses reader submitions to sometimes publish hoax stories as it's hard to read every submition that is sent.

      You don't have to check every story that's sent -- just the ones that you decide to actually post. That only amounts to a handful of stories per day.

    • by Rogerborg (306625) on Saturday June 08, 2002 @11:14AM (#3665033) Homepage
      • More than once Slashdot has published stories from questionable sources which turned out to be completely false

      Yeah, but this is completely different! The Beijing evening news is a for-profit publication with a staff of paid professional editors, whereas Slashdot is... no, wait... what was I saying again?

  • Guess this will be my first trolling mod here, but I do not see what this is doing on slashdot.

    I got this days ago from the mainstream media.

    This is not what I expect from slashdot. Yet another testament to the need for a more democratic story acceptance system.

    • Three words: "Stuff that matters."
    • Democracy won't help (Score:3, Informative)

      by tlhf (312423)
      Kuro5hin.org, the proof of concept democratic group blog, has already posted this, a few days earlier than slashdot. It got voted to front page.

      tlhf
      xxx
      • Kuro5hin.org, the proof of concept democratic group blog, has already posted this, a few days earlier than slashdot. It got voted to front page.

        So what? Kuro5hin's "democratic group" concept is flawed. Just try to submit a story, and most times, it'll be rejected for asinine things like a typo, or maybe enough people just didn't agree with the story.

        Ever hear the statement "Too many cooks spoil the broth?" That's Kuro5hin for you.
    • Exactly why doesn't it belong on slashdot?
      Because mainstream media also covered it?
      Because mainstream media covered it first?
      It certainly can't be because of the content because that absolutely fits slashdot, a story about an actual established paper printing something it read on the internet only to find out it was a spoof article. That is most definately slashdot material. Hell slashdot does it all the time.
      • I must respectfully disagree, CodeMonky.

        Because mainstream media covered it first?
        Nope, nothing to do with it. What I'm saying is that I go to mainstream media sites for this kind of news, and I come to /. for another kind.

        That is most definately slashdot material. Hell slashdot does it all the time.
        Well, if /. does it all of the time is it news? Conceivably, this could be news the first time or three around, but we're well past that.

  • by An Onerous Coward (222037) on Saturday June 08, 2002 @08:50AM (#3664698) Homepage
    I remember a hilarious letter to Readers Digest, complaining that they shouldn't be giving any publicity to avowed Satanist J.K. Rowling. The woman's source for her numerous quotes? You guessed it. [theonion.com] She gave the URL of the story to anyone looking for further information.

    The staff of Readers Digest was kind enough to point out the woman's error.
  • On the same page there was an article saying something like "sexual tension between sharon and arafat reaches breaking point" and was about them kissing. Of course maybe I'm giving them way too much credit for intelligence
  • I've translated the beijing evening news article from chinese:

    Translated from http://www.ben.com.cn/WLZB/20020603/GB/WLZB^357^7^ 03R1101.htm

    WASHINGTON, DC--Calling the current U.S. Capitol "inadequate and obsolete," Congress will relocate to Charlotte or Memphis if its demands for a new, state-of-the-art facility are not met, leaders announced Monday.

    Above: An architectural firm's proposal for a new retractable-dome capitol. Inset: Hastert addresses reporters.
    "Don't get us wrong: We love the drafty old building," Speaker of the House Dennis Hastert (R-IL) said. "But the hard reality is, it's no longer suitable for a world-class legislative branch. The sight lines are bad, there aren't enough concession stands or bathrooms, and the parking is miserable. It hurts to say, but the capitol's time has come and gone."

    "If we want to stay competitive, we need to upgrade," said House Minority Leader Dick Gephardt (D-MO), who has proposed a new $3.5 billion capitol on the site of the current edifice. "Look at British Parliament. Look at the Vatican. Respected institutions in their markets. But without modern facilities, they've been having big problems attracting top talent."

    Its cornerstone laid in 1793 by President Washington, the capitol has been built, rebuilt, extended, and restored countless times over the past 209 years. Legislators say another multimillion-dollar renovation is not an acceptable alternative to a new building.

    "How many times can you put a fresh coat of paint over an old, broken-down horse?" asked Sen. Rick Santorum (R-PA), co-chair of the Senate Relocation Subcommittee. "We need a building that befits our status as the nation's number-one democratically elected legislative body. And if D.C. isn't willing to provide that, I can think of plenty of other cities that would be more than happy to."

    The leading candidates for a possible congressional relocation are Charlotte and Memphis, both of which have long sought a major organization to raise their national profile. San Francisco civic leaders have also lobbied hard, offering to finance a $4 billion Pac Bell Capitol Building using a combination of private corporate funds (40 percent), a county sales tax (35 percent), and a local cigarette tax (25 percent). Dallas, Seattle, and Toronto have also been mentioned as long shots.

    Demonstrating its commitment to "stay in Washington if at all possible," Congress has invited more than a dozen architectural firms to submit proposals for a new D.C. capitol. Among the early favorites is the ambitiously titled "Halls Of Power," a retro-futuristic design by the Kansas City architectural firm of Hellmuth, Obata, and Kassabaum. The Halls Of Power would feature a retractable rotunda for daytime sessions, a Dancing Waters fountain in the front courtyard, and 55 more luxury boxes than the current building.

    "This is just the kind of thing we need to stay competitive in today's lawmaking environment," said agent Barry Halperin, who represents many prominent government officials, including Sen. Jim Jeffords (I-VT) and Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld. "Washington can no longer afford to ignore the fact that visitor attendance has dropped every year since 1989. Our elected officials don't like coming to this building and, clearly, neither do their constituents."

    Experts attribute the decline in congressional attendance to a number of factors, including increased home viewership of legislative activities on C-SPAN, with which Congress signed an exclusive 20-year, $360 million broadcast pact in 1984. It is not known how a new capitol building would affect the terms of that soon-to-expire contract, but Congress is expected to restructure the deal to increase its share of revenues and secure possible advertising rights, regardless of whether it opts for rebuilding or relocation.

    According to the lawmakers' constituents, the capitol is not the problem.

    "Sure, the capitol's a little beat-up, but it's got its charms," said Geoff Lapointe, a Glendale, CA, voter. "The real problem is the legislators. Back in the old days, you had big stars like John Kennedy and Richard Nixon. Who've they got today? Evan Bayh? Paul Sarbanes? Who's gonna get excited about those guys?"

    Lapointe said he is "fed up" with the legislators and their demands.

    "Those guys are all just a bunch of spoiled, overpaid crybabies," Lapointe said. "All they want is money--they don't care about all the hardworking people who pay their salaries. Look at 'em: When's the last time you saw them acting like a team? They can take their capitol and shove it."

  • by SuperCal (549671) on Saturday June 08, 2002 @09:00AM (#3664712) Homepage
    I what I find even more funny, is that (according to FOX news) the paper countinues to claim that it properly followed up and checked the sources and when Fox reporters questioned them about it, they simply replied (I'm paraphrasing) "How do you know our reporters didn't make calls to confirm this story?"
  • "Integrity Shmentegrity, I don't understand journalists' obsessive-compulsive desire to get every little number correct. I mean, this is Journalism, not Rocket Science. We're here to entertain the masses, not put men on the goddamned moon." -- Me at my job interview for the Nevada Appeal. Guess who's still unemployed?
  • Dear Chinese Reporter,

    In case you were looking for more news to reprint about the stupidness that is America, here are some other leads you might want to follow:
    1) America is stupid
    2) No, seriously. Just put that up as your headline and your readers will believe it. Though you might get letters berating you for not being mean enough.
    3) And despite that win the other day, we still suck at soccer.
    4) And we're all very, very gay.
    5) And completely against education, sewer systems, organized government and hygiene.
    6) And we find Jay Leno to be absolutely hilarious.

    If only number six weren't true.
    -Brandon

    I don't know why they picked up the Onion story. This one's [lostbrain.com] more believable.
  • "The story was written by one of our freelance writers," an editor at the Evening News told Reuters on Friday. "His stuff has been pretty much reliable before."

    I sure give those blokes a call for a consultation should I ever have to hire a reliable journalist.

  • And they'll have the olympics? Just imagine: (Translated) Iyama Yuoamoto won the gold medal!! No wait...the bronze medal....no wait, the...
  • "Why would they have our national grammar rodeo in an another country?" -- Lisa Simpson.

    What is the relevance?

    One of the listed long-shot alternatives was Toronto--Canada eh!

    Iaamoac

  • by CokeBear (16811) on Saturday June 08, 2002 @09:19AM (#3664748) Journal
    Best Onion Article Ever:

    http://www.theonion.com/onion3734/god_clarifies_do nt_kill.html [theonion.com]

    Not only is it funny, but also deeply insightful, even for an atheist like me.

  • My girlfriend's sister is editor of Buisness China, a Shanghai based Economist publication (in English) which comes out every fortnight. She is always having to watch out for her freelancers lifting articles from other English language sources. The freelancers figure that they are so far off the beaten track they can get away with it. But they quickly find out how much she reads.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    Unfortunately, the page seems to be gone now, but the onion ran this just a couple of weeks ago:
    Factual Error Found on Internet [theonion.com]

    "The Information Age was dealt a stunning blow Monday, when a factual error was discovered on the Internet. The error was found on TedsUltimateBradyBunch.com, a Brady Bunch fan site that incorrectly listed the show's debut year as 1968, not 1969.

    "Caryn Wisniewski, a Pueblo, CO, legal secretary and diehard Brady Bunch fan, came across the mistake while searching for information about the show's first-season cast."
  • I wonder how many Members of the Chinese government now have dreams of a Retractable Dome of their own. The Onion may have unwittingly kicked of a international contest between our governments.

    "Nyah! Nyah! My Domes Bigger than Yooourrrs!"

    Or Not.
    • by Anonymous Coward
      Maybe a dome in Beijing will attract some of our "top talent" away, leaving room for rookies and semi-retired politicians in their wake?
      God..
      One can only hope.
  • by doublem (118724) on Saturday June 08, 2002 @09:36AM (#3664790) Homepage Journal
    I still remember the damn fool local DJs reading the "Post office wants to levy a 5 cent tax on each e-mail" story as real. Most of my coworkers were in a panic and complaining bitterly. I printed up disclaimers debunking the story from the US Post Office's web site, among other locations.

    Sadly, my coworkers insisted that the post office must be lying, because "They wouldn't put it on the radio if it weren't true!" (Yes, that is a real quote)

    It was read on WAAF (bottom of the dung pile "rock" station) by "Mistress Carrie" for crying out loud!

    And then there was the time Hillary Clinton was asked about her stance on the bill during an interview...
    • > It was read on WAAF (bottom of the dung pile "rock" station) by "Mistress Carrie" for crying out loud! As if there was something better to listen to in Boston? Come on.
      • You got me there.

        For some reason taste in music escapes most of the population out here.

        Still, WAAF is OK on the weekends. I just wish they'd shut the DJs up and play some $#@ Music for a change. MTV (The Shiny Things Network*) has more music these days than the Boston stations.

        * "After 16 years, MTV has finally completed its deevolution into the shiny things network"
  • by afflatus_com (121694) on Saturday June 08, 2002 @09:40AM (#3664801) Homepage
    The founder of the Onion was on Jay Leno a while back and discussed the problem at length.

    He said that the biggest problem was email forwards from people who consider it a news release, and in the email there is not the rest of the onion's site for context, so people don't know it is a parody.

    He said the 2 that generated the most amount of letters from concerned citizens, up to that point in time, was "Chinese woman gives birth to septuplets, doesn't know which one to keep" and "New York to install infant-only dumpsters".
  • There was the girl in my Chem class,
    we were researching experiments to do for a class project. All of a sudden, I hear "Oh my god, Bill Nye is dead, I didn't know that!" I was laughing my ass off, half the class we talking about it, and about how good of shows he had, and how sad it was, even the teacher believed it. When I walked over to see what the commotion was about, I nearly wet myself.
  • Even if you believed the part about wanting to relocate, I don't think there is any chance that Congress would relocate to TORONTO: Dallas, Seattle, and Toronto have also been mentioned as long shots.
  • Just goes to show the importance of checking your sources, lest you inadvertantly embarrass yourself in front of the 'eyeballs' of your readership. (hint)

    OT, but the thought occurs: I wonder if /. could be sued by the Fox network for loss of eyeballs over the Lone Gunmen fiasco? I'm sure at least a couple of otherwise-viewers skipped watching it, knowing the outcome.
  • Sounds Familiar ... (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Batou (532120) on Saturday June 08, 2002 @09:53AM (#3664828)
    I have a very-muched-loved-yet-altogether-nuts-over-religio n uncle that used to send out his own newsletter giving news from the Christian coalition mindset kind of thing. Used to annoy the hell out of me that he somehow thought that he assumed I wanted to be filled in and take action against evolution being taught in schools and such, but it wasn't worth the confrontation to tell him to STFU.

    Well. One of these things he sent me a few years ago was about how the Harry Potter books were teaching our kids satanism and witchcraft and such. Now this thing was sent in all seriousness, with quotes from children (something about sucking Satan's "gigantic black cock", I don't quite recall). Anyway, he was dead serious that this was a problem that all "good christians" should take immediate action against.

    Now I would normally just delete these things after getting a good laugh, since I really do like the guy despite this kind of evangelical nonsense. What caught my eye was the link to the article he was quoting from - it was (ta da) from The Onion. I nearly fell out of my chair at work from laughing so hard.
    • This happened to me as well. Several days at the beginning of last year, the Onion Article was being passed around via email some of the more religious young women at my office. The hell of it was that it had been forwarded to the 'Local Christian E-Mail Distribution Officer' by a prominent local pastor.

      They *Bought* this, hook, line, and sinker.
    • Hahahaha!!! Hohohohho! ...Um, and that quote was? While I enjoyed the rant about your 3rd cousins uncles brothers religious news letter, your post lacks any sort of value without said link.

      "Knock Knock"
      "Who's there?"
      "Um..."
      "Errr..."
      "Uh..."
      "Damn. I forgot, but trust me, it was funny."

      Whatever.
  • by phillymjs (234426) <slashdot@nOSpAm.stango.org> on Saturday June 08, 2002 @09:55AM (#3664831) Homepage Journal
    ...about China's space program and their wish to land on the moon by 2010 [slashdot.org]:

    Are they actually doing their own R&D, or just feverishly combing the Internet trying to find out how to make Cavorite? [pagebypagebooks.com]

    ~Philly
  • Irony (Score:4, Funny)

    by SocialWorm (316263) on Saturday June 08, 2002 @10:00AM (#3664841) Homepage
    I'm surprised no one has pointed out how ironic this story is on /.

    We're reading a story on a niche news site about a story on a popular news site about a story in a major newspaper (albeit in China) taken from a site that lampoons the news.
  • Because the rest of the world would not be surprised if it were true!
  • Item! Hold onto your hats, everyone, because this is the Big One. From one of my better sources, who must obviously remain nameless, I've learned that there is going to be another Star Wars movie! Plot details about Star Wars 4 are extremely sketchy, but from what I understand, Luke and Laura have to find a magic potion that was hidden by Boba Fett, Darth Vader's son-in-law, in order to save their home planet from space drug dealers. It's good to know that Steven Spielberg still has the magic touch. Stay tuned for more info. And may The Force be with you and your loved ones!
    Link [theonion.com]

    Death Star Daycare [theonion.com]
  • But I think this demonstrates that satire sites should carry warnings. After all, remember that adequacy article "is your son a computer hacker?". 7000+ people were taken in by it.

    Imagine if the Chinese read in a "satire" site that the US was going to nuke them, and they believed it!

    I would rather be on the safe side here, even if people's free speech needs to be curtailed just a little bit.

  • They probably get their English lessons from Herbert Kornfeld.
    http://www.theonion.com/archive/archive_kornfeld.h tml [theonion.com]
  • Just think what news they would report if they had not blocked access to Washington Post and CNN. :-)

    Guess they didn't peel the onion.
  • by Easy2RememberNick (179395) on Saturday June 08, 2002 @11:37AM (#3665115)
    Well if you think the Chinese are gullible then you should watch "Talking With Americans" by Rick Mercer. Rick is a Canadian comedian who interviews Americans in the US posing as a Canadian journalist (which is he is). He interviews regular people, politicians, anyone. He'll stun them with facts like we just got indoor plumbing, paved roads, tv, the 24 hour clock...lmao and the people believe it! It's so stupid how could anyone believe it!!!

    here [radio.cbc.ca]

    and here [cbc.ca]
  • ...was published right after the 2000 elections when we didn't know who the next president would be.

    Within days of election night, The Onion came out with one of its greatest stories ever: Bush Or Gore: 'A New Era Dawns' [theonion.com], accurately satirizing just how similar the two candidates were.

    • The poster's slightly mistaken. The really funny part of this story was the fact that it was posted BEFORE the election. Late in the evening on election day we were starting to realize how prescient it really was.

      -Aaron
  • by fprefect (14608) on Saturday June 08, 2002 @12:09PM (#3665209)
    The thing that struck me here was not "how could they believe what they read in the Onion?", but "is there a segment of the Chinese that takes anything in print as fact?"

    In our open society, we take freedom of the press to the extreme by publishing just about anything. It forces people to read news with a critical eye, which carries over to various aspects of out life. In a society where all information and editorial is controlled and filtered heavily, is it a surprise that "news" and "critical thinking" don't always go hand in hand.

    I'm not trying to slight the Chinese here, I'm sure there are plenty of US Citizens who pick up the Onion and believe it as fact -- I'm sure it would confuse the heck out of my grandmother. And how many times have you seen someone repost a good April Fools joke as fact?

    So yes, it's funny, but apply your critical thinking and take it in context -- that the world is full of gullible people.
    • So yes, it's funny, but apply your critical thinking and take it in context -- that the world is full of gullible people.

      Yes, and we hope that those on the more gullible end are not our journalists for major newspapers.

      (That's the *real* context.)

      mark
  • I thought the mainstream media was going to save us from all this Internet misinformation. After all, how can we unwashed masses be informed without their help?

    I think it's funny as hell that after all the crap we've heard from the media about how the Internet is a dangerous playground of falsehood and misinformation, they were taken in by a web site well known among Internet users as being a satire site.

  • by ArcadeNut (85398) on Saturday June 08, 2002 @12:41PM (#3665306) Homepage
    Not to be picky here, but they were not "SPOOFED" by The Onion, they were "DUPED".

    If they were Spoofed then you would have seen an article on The Onion about Beijing and not an article about some news station in Beijing using a story on The Onion.

    • Not to be picky here, but they were not "SPOOFED" by The Onion, they were "DUPED".

      Classically speaking -- in dictionary terms -- you are correct, sir. However, this being a Nerd site, CmdrTaco was apparently using Geekspeak. In this jargon, "spoof" means "to fool", derived from the ability of hackers to create false email headers; this technique being referred to as "spoofing", with the resultant back-formation of "spoof". Linguistically speaking, the reversal of the meaning of a term is an important part of the creation of a sub-language; the example that springs to mind just now is the early-'70's use in the African-American culture of the term "bad" to mean "very good".

      And, to be even more exacting, they weren't "duped" -- the use of "dupe" implies a conscious motive toward the Beijing newspaper on the part of "The Onion", which did not exist. "Fooled" is probably the appropriate word to use here.

  • Some friends and I just created a parody news site the other day. We're not really complete enough to start advertising, but that won't stop us from mentioning it once in a while, like, say, here.

    But what does amuse me is that the line between real journalism and parody has gotten a lot slimmer in the recent years. Ever since The Daily Show, it's almost seemed better to get your news from someplace like that than a traditional boring newscast. The Daily Show seems to give accurate enough basis for the parody stuff they do, just twisted. Of course, the Domination News Network that myself and some friends created is a little more like The Onion, with the user community twist. I'm almost afraid now, that someone will take DNN seriously someday. Particularly since the "basis" for it is global domination by a conspiracy that's decided to go semi-public.

    I keep wondering if I should be proud to get on any watch lists with some of the articles we may post someday? :)

    Domination News Network [bowdownbefore.us]

    Suggestions for site improvement are always accepted, by the way. And submissions for content just as much so. :)
  • To be a scientist... (Score:2, Interesting)

    by joshyc (584247)
    It's probably just the massive amount of caffeine circulating through my system right now but this quote made me laugh for a solid 5 minutes:

    "To be a scientist, you have to learn all this weird stuff, like how many molecules are in a proton,..."

    Taken from: http://www.theonion.com/onion3821/science_hard.htm l

    Oh well, back to studying for chem.

You knew the job was dangerous when you took it, Fred. -- Superchicken

Working...