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Bogus Harry Potter Book In China 203

elveu writes "Chinese Harry Potter fans have been blessed with the fifth book early -- only it's not the real one. The title translates to 'Harry Potter And Leopard Walk Up To Dragon.' The story has Harry getting turned into a fat hairy drawf and being void of his powers."
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Bogus Harry Potter Book In China

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  • by stevey ( 64018 ) on Saturday July 06, 2002 @10:29AM (#3832605) Homepage

    This is completely different because it's a parody - but it amused me:

    The first chapter is available online - and is hugely funny..

  • by IronTek ( 153138 ) on Saturday July 06, 2002 @10:34AM (#3832625) Homepage
    I bet you this thing, sadly, is going to become some sort of rare ultra-expensive collector's item stateside in the very near future... ...and this is a shame. I for one don't read the Harry Potter books, but even I have respect for J.K Rowling and her story (not referring to Harry Potter here)...so to turn something as fake as this "new" book is quite the shame, and I think I'd be upset if I were Ms. Rowling.
    • by Lemmy Caution ( 8378 ) on Saturday July 06, 2002 @10:45AM (#3832678) Homepage
      I don't see it that way. For one thing, it's not piracy - she didn't write this book (I don't read Chinese, so I couldn't tell whether they attributed the book to her or not, but in any case, it's an original work.) In Mexico, you can find a lot of street-artisans who make paper-mache versions of Tweety-Bird, Bugs Bunny, Spider-Man, and the like, and create an informal visual culture based on images that were otherwise completely imported. This is a way of adapting to the fact of being completely overwhelmed by culture industries from overseas.

      I think of this as a combination of a fan-fic and street-level gray-market good. It's the adaptation of a local culture to a global one, and I think it's vital. After all, just who did Disney pay and ask permission from to use the characters in Mu-Lan, or the Lion King, or any of the other non-Western cultural figures that they freely profit from?

      • Agreed...If the name is the only holdover from the original (which it sounds like it is), then whats the big deal? Its an original work, which makes it even less piracy. Kind of like 'open source' fiction.

        My cousins used submit their own scripts for Star Trek to the producers. (which I think was encouraged) They were not the creators of Star Trek, but understood the characters, the environment, and could write scripts that were just as good as those written by the actual writers.
      • Wasn't Mulan an adaption of a traditional Chinese story that Disney made in order to gain favor with the Chinese government- and hence get access to their markets?

        Assuming that Disney have a substantial proportion of their merchandise made in China (I haven't researched this at all, but it seems likely), would they be trying to sell it back to the people that made it- and would they buy it? I'd like to find out...
      • After all, just who did Disney pay and ask permission from to use the characters in Mu-Lan, or the Lion King

        DisneyCo pirated two movies from Japan. "The Lion King" is "Kimba the White Lion". "Atlantis" is "Nadia: Secret of Blue Water".

        or any of the other non-Western cultural figures that they freely profit from?

        Actually, some of the Western characters that Disney uses are still under copyright. Take Peter Pan for instance. Peter Pan is still under a limited form of copyright in the United Kingdom and will be forever [wikipedia.com], or at least until the hospital that owns the copyright [gosh.org] goes out of business. No, this isn't Bono Act pseudo-perpetual copyright [pineight.com]; it's the real thing. DisneyCo will get a dose of its own medicine when it tries to bring Return to Never Land into DVD Region 2.

    • She'd be right to be mad if (1) this was successfully passed off as her work in the West, which won't happen, or (2) if this was direct piracy of her work, which it isn't. Under the circumstances, if she gets mad about it, she's just whining about the fact that she's popular enough that people want to parody (or build upon) her ideas. If you can't take the heat, don't become a famous writer.
  • Collectors item (Score:3, Insightful)

    by tsa ( 15680 ) on Saturday July 06, 2002 @10:34AM (#3832627) Homepage
    This will be a good collectors item.
  • by Wiseazz ( 267052 ) on Saturday July 06, 2002 @10:35AM (#3832630)
    and being void of his powers

    They turned him into Newt Gingrich?

  • by mrsam ( 12205 ) on Saturday July 06, 2002 @10:38AM (#3832645) Homepage
    "Harry Potter, and the Wrath Of The Troll", wherein Harry Potter is turned into a slashdot editor that can't spell.

  • From the Bloomsbury website [bloomsburymagazine.com]:

    "JK Rowling is happily writing the fifth Harry Potter book and we will announce a publication date once we have received the finished manuscript. As soon as we have any more news about the publication date we will update this area."

    It's also well known that the fifth book will be titled "Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix." Book 4, "Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire" was published in July of 2000. 2 years and counting. . . no wonder the fakes are emerging!
  • Wait for it...

    The new Defense of the Dark Arts teacher!

    The Harry Potter books (the real ones) are great for children and OK for adults, but they are quickly turning into formula novels. Rowling needs to shake up the next novel a lot, otherwise Mr. Potter's books will sink back to the children's section.

    Of couse, this wouldn't really be a bad thing.

    • actually they don't really follow a formula. yes in three out of the four the dark arts teacher has been bad. the villin was the defence of the dark arts teacher in two of them. the dark arts teacher was drunk on illgotten fame in antoher. and in anotehr it ws harrys fathers friend. so no it's not alwasy the defence agains the dark arts techer. in fact the books got more complicated as they go on. the firts one starts off as a childrents cook and as harry gets older the sorys become more complex. sure they're not exceptionally complex but they are good books. people jsut seems to have dismissed harry potter as crap beceause it is popular with children which is very common. like people hated pokemon beceause young kids liked the anime. if they're read with a mondset like that yes you will be looking for faults. but harry potter is not predictable in fact the second one where the defence against the dark arts techer was the bad guy you thought he was the good guy throught the whole thing.
      • people jsut seems to have dismissed harry potter as crap beceause it is popular with children which is very common. like people hated pokemon beceause young kids liked the anime./i?

        Umm, pokemon IS crap.

        Horribly CUTE crap mind you, but crap none the less.

        Actually what pisses me off isn't the over marketing, it isn't the shoddy TV show, and it isn't even the CCG knock off.

        It is that it is a DECENT, I repeat, DECENT RPG that was rather linear and boring and good for a few hour run through, and that is it. All the fan fair about a middle-grade RPG isn't really right.

        Yes folks, the game in me still lives on. w00t! SSI GOLD BOX FOREVER, BIZZZOOOTCH!
        • Well damnit fucked that up. Lets try this again, Rant 2.0

          people jsut seems to have dismissed harry potter as crap beceause it is popular with children which is very common. like people hated pokemon beceause young kids liked the anime.

          Umm, pokemon IS crap.

          Horribly CUTE crap mind you, but crap none the less.

          Actually what pisses me off isn't the over marketing, it isn't the shoddy TV show, and it isn't even the CCG knock off.

          It is that it is a DECENT, I repeat, DECENT RPG that was rather linear and boring and good for a few hour run through, and that is it. All the fan fair about a middle-grade RPG isn't really right.

          Yes folks, the game in me still lives on. w00t! SSI GOLD BOX FOREVER, BIZZZOOOTCH!
      • Golly, it's a good thing you didn't spoil any of the story!
  • by SuperDuG ( 134989 ) <be&eclec,tk> on Saturday July 06, 2002 @10:43AM (#3832671) Homepage Journal
    Lets see ...

    The entire country is blocked by a huge firewall censoring the entire internet. All forms of news and entertainment media are controlled by the government. The country is ran by a one party dictatorship. People have minimal human rights. More than 60% of the country is impoverished.

    But yes, let's focus on the fact that there's a bogus Harry Potter book floating around in China, God knows that's more important.

    • The entire country is blocked by a huge firewall censoring the entire internet. All forms of news and entertainment media are controlled by the government. The country is ran by a one party dictatorship. People have minimal human rights. More than 60% of the country is impoverished.
      Sounds like America in 10 years time - if you disagree, you're not a patriot... Did you know our poverty rate was currently at around 14%, with 25% of all women living below the poverty line? See here [jcpr.org].
      • If I'm reading those statistics correctly, they basicaly say that almost all poor people are female?

        Doesn't make sense to me...
        • Well, if you're in the buisiness of making up statistics, you could consider every housewife below the poverty line since they have no direct 'income'. Of course, things like this are only useful if you're trying to use your 'statistics' to further an agenda.

          Wheeeee!
          • Ah, that's probably it... good thinking.

            Nice example of how statistics can be so misleading :-/
    • All those things have been covered here before. We all know about them. This, we didn't. Now we do.
      • It's a Harry Potter book. What value does this serve except for entertainment. Are children blessed with higher intellects by reading this? Are countries brought to peace through it? Do starving families eat well? NO! This is a prime example of media crap. Who cares if Harry Potter has a fake? Who cares if he turns into a troll? When are we going to realize that the world is controlled by media and not by what really counts?

        Where are we honoring our intellectuals? Where are we showing that the value of reasoning is better than the value of dunking a basketball. We need to realize that the world needs to change or else we will begin to regress into worms. I come to slashdot for news that applies to techies and computer intellectuals, if I want to read entertainment news I'll go somewhere else. I was meerly stating that China has a whole heap of problems over the fact that they have a fake Harry Potter book.

    • Perhaps it's a cover message for text based steganography? It would be the perfect way to hide a message: A lot of people are reading it, obfuscating the recipient of the message, and it looks inoccous enough to slip past the radar screen of everybody. Maybe there's something encoded the spaces? Or maybe a pattern to the characters? Who knows...
    • China is now a capitalist country, and this book is a product of that economy. It's the details that make sweeping generalities harder to take seriously. If the government controls all media, what was the point of this book?

      Learn more about everyday life in China. China changes more every couple of years than most Western countries change in a decade.

    • That news has already been published, several times. People who read the news generally already know that.
    • Let see:
      - Huget firewall=FBI carnivore.
      - Control of entertainment media=Disney and its senator minions.
      - Ran by one party dictatorship=Bush administration.
      - Minimum human rights=DMCA and other bills against terrorism.
      - 60% of the country empoverished=lots of workers from other countries are under minimum wages.

      For one minute, I thought that you were referring to the US. Phew! I'm glad that you were talking about China.

      PPA, the girl next door.
  • by totallygeek ( 263191 ) <sellis@totallygeek.com> on Saturday July 06, 2002 @10:45AM (#3832676) Homepage
    I think it is funny that fan fiction can become more exciting than the canon storyline (from the author). Look at the craze over Fett with Star Wars. Can you imagine the popularity of a story about Yoda or the birth of the Jedi?

  • Titles (Score:4, Funny)

    by GigsVT ( 208848 ) on Saturday July 06, 2002 @10:49AM (#3832695) Journal
    'Harry Potter And Leoard Walk Up To Dragon.'

    In other news, the fake versions of the sixth and seventh book will be titled "Harry Potter Slay Dragon", and "Harry Potter Steal Dragon Treasure".

    The manuscripts were discovered when buyers found that each only contained 2 pages of text, and a lot of blank pages.
    • Re:Titles (Score:5, Funny)

      by JCCyC ( 179760 ) on Saturday July 06, 2002 @12:21PM (#3833038) Journal
      In other news, the fake versions of the sixth and seventh book will be titled "Harry Potter Slay Dragon", and "Harry Potter Steal Dragon Treasure".

      The manuscripts were discovered when buyers found that each only contained 2 pages of text, and a lot of blank pages.


      Harry: What happen?
      Teacher: Someone set up us the spell.
      Harry: Crystal ball turn on.
      Teacher: It's you!
      Dragon: How are you gentlemen?
      Dragon: All your magic are belong to us.

      to be continued...
  • BBC Report (Score:4, Interesting)

    by jt007 ( 459122 ) <jt007NO@SPAMbruce-lee.com> on Saturday July 06, 2002 @10:51AM (#3832700)
    The BBC [bbc.co.uk] also has a report about this here [bbc.co.uk]
  • fanfic (Score:3, Informative)

    by Fjord ( 99230 ) on Saturday July 06, 2002 @10:53AM (#3832710) Homepage Journal
    And peopl eon the internet have been able to read unofficial version of Harry Potter stories [tripod.com] for free.
  • by Bonker ( 243350 ) on Saturday July 06, 2002 @11:12AM (#3832764)
    I read the article at another source, but am left wondering how the content of 'Leopard Walk up to Dragon' is any different than the reams and reams of bad Harry fanfiction available on sites like Fanfiction.net [fanfiction.net].

    While it's being sold as Rowling's work, that is the only crime I see being committed, unless the publishers want to stamp out all original Harry fiction in the name of 'protecting their copyright'. Even the most zealous of intellectual property holders, Paramount, doesn't do a thing to inhibit the vast, vast legions of Trek ficcers and slash writers because they know exactly badly they'd alienate their fan communities. Lucas doesn't either. In fact, SW stories flourish on sites like theforce.net [theforece.net].

    I imagine that 'Leopard Walk up to Dragon' is probably a fanstory that got snapped up by an unscrupulous pirate publisher. The real author is probably not getting the credit he or she deserves for being so dedicated as to write a novel-length fan story and the legitimate Harry Potter publishers are going to make everyone's lives miserable because of it.
    • no i think it's just that they claimed it was offical that is the problem. if htye said it was a fanfic it would be no problem but if people buy it thinking it's real then they're being ripped off
    • While it's being sold as Rowling's work, that is the only crime I see being committed, unless the publishers want to stamp out all original Harry fiction in the name of 'protecting their copyright'.

      Not protecting their copyrights, but exercising their copyrights. The individual author of a novel creation (like Harry Potter and the various books he's in) has the lifelong right to decide who can and who can't "copy" that creation, including allowing a publisher to print the books in exchange for money, or allowing fans to "copy" parts as a derivitive work for PR benefits.

      The sad part is, though, that J.K. Rowling's going to catch as much heat as Metallica did for trying to protect her IP rights. Thank you /., thank you Microsoft.
  • And I'll buy a copy. Would be the first HP book I read.

  • I have often thought of writing Hairy Pothead and the Sorcerer, Stoned, about Harry's dissolute adventures with controlled substances and the resulting degradation of his hygiene whilst at university.
    • "Harry is a potthead and the sorcer's stoned" is the original...

      you can buy t-shirts with that text on newgrounds.com
    • (* I have often thought of writing Hairy Pothead and the Sorcerer, Stoned, about Harry's dissolute adventures with controlled substances and the resulting degradation of his hygiene whilst at university. *)

      Most would find the newt-sniffing scene rather disturbing.
  • Oldest Technique (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward
    When Miguel de Cervantes was taking too long to publish the sequel to his masterpiece, Don Quijote, some industrious person came out with a fake version as well. It's always happend, and always will
  • by cyberon22 ( 456844 ) on Saturday July 06, 2002 @11:30AM (#3832845)
    ... that this book is poorly written. Direct translations from any language usually sound horrible. Chinese-English translations are particularly difficult because many language constructions in Chinese just don't have English equivalents. The same goes for English text simply translated into Chinese.

    So while the article [asia1.com.sg] linked above mocks the book on the basis of its first sentence. I'd be curious to know if the author (who is seemingly a native English-speaker) has read the original Harry Potter books in their Chinese translation. Is this one really worse???

    Frankly, I'd imagine that if this thing is selling as many copies as the author claims, it's either because it's well written, or because it's fooling a lot of people. And if it's fooling a lot of people, that probably means it's well written. Either that or Rowling needs to get some better English-Chinese translators....
  • That really seems to be the icing on the cake. Sitting behind the great wall, he's probably in one of the safest spots in the world, a place where the police can't get him.

    It's just a matter of coincidence that one of the world's biggest markets is in that very place. Oh well.

    Software piracy has been going on there for quite a while, now they've just gone one step further.

  • ... are belong to us.
  • Hmmm... Here [207.171.181.16], Amazon relates Running Weblogs With Slash to Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone (Widescreen Edition)?
  • 'Harry doesn't know how long it will take to wash the sticky cream cake off his face,'

    'For a civilised young man it is disgusting to have dirt on any part of his body.

    'He lies in the high-quality china bathtub, keeps wiping his face, and thinks about Dali's face, which is as fat as the bottom of Aunt Penny.'

    'He keeps wonder what it is to be man when he grow up then Ginny can be wife and have two children as directed by the Queen Lizerbath II'

    'The soap bubble go up then flop down next to the now dead soap bubble.'

    'Harry wave his thumb and flies in his magic stick which he wave at bubble, bubble turn into TV and he watch BBC where there is a show about how to capture his uncle Black'

    'Harry is not happy'

    'Harry looks down and see he is man now, but he grow not tall, maybe if he play basketball he might but in England Harry only play soccer, that till Harry in school then he play his favourite sport'

    'Harry turn TV into bubble then say prayer to Jesus before walking to kitchen where Aunt Penny is angry with Harry again'

    'Aunt Penny look at Harry and scream'

    AUNT PENNY : 'HELP HELP It's the man from Austin powers, help help!'

    'Harry look puzzle and rub his scar then look in mirror'

    'Harry sees mini me, Harry feel heart break into one piece' ...
  • by Tablizer ( 95088 ) on Saturday July 06, 2002 @12:43PM (#3833128) Journal
    (* The story has Harry getting turned into a fat hairy drawf and being void of his powers." *)

    Perhaps they should have called it, "Harry Gets Married".
  • Damn.. (Score:2, Funny)

    Overpeer's at it again!
  • I heard about this fake on the radio. Apparently the giveaway that the book comes from China and not J K Rowling is the "sweet and sour rain".

    The mind boggles! :)

    Julian
  • what concerns me (Score:4, Insightful)

    by lingqi ( 577227 ) on Saturday July 06, 2002 @01:04PM (#3833217) Journal
    is not that there is a book and what not, but as the story has pointed out:

    This is a case which we are aware of and, as with all piracy matters throughout the world, take this issue extremely seriously.

    i am sorry, HUH? piracy matters? wtf does that have to do with this? This is more like infringement of copyright of the Harry Potter name, but there are other people writing fan fictions -- the only thing this author is guilty of is probabbly the fact that he pretended to be Rowling, but throughout the story it appears that he did not try to do that anyway, nor does people really think that he is Rowling because of the difference in writing style etc; so it just boils down to that a fan-fiction got published and we are taking it *way* too seriously because Rowlings believes it's taking away some of her money. good grief people.

    • i am sorry, HUH? piracy matters? wtf does that have to do with this?

      Yeah, I was struck by that too. It seems like they're clearly overstating the nature of the "crime" in order to come off more alarmist. There's a lot of that going around right now...
  • Harry Potter: what you say?
  • by agrounds ( 227704 ) on Saturday July 06, 2002 @01:22PM (#3833289)
    Haryy's quest to continue to find He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named as he journeys across the wild and exotic backdrop of rural China. Along the way he encounters the loveable but stern Master who takes him in and teaches him Leopard-Style Kung-Fu, the only Kung-Fu capable of beating the Voldemort's Dragon-Style. Armed with a quarter staff and the ability to make feathers float, he resumes his quest only to finally meet up with Voldemort against the oft-used-but-still-unappreciated-backdrop of the Great Wall. They challenge each other, make feathers float, then begin the fateful duel. Hilarity ensues. This book has dubbbed speech, or you can choose the subtitle option, where the english shows up at the bottom of the book as a footnote.
  • I submitted the same story on friday, except mine had a lot more detail, including for example the fact that the author was given as "An English Person J K Rowling" and that the book had JK Rowling's picture on the sleeve and that Harry gets caught in a rain of sweet and sour ! Oh, and that JK Rowling's reps were apparently investigating. Strange how /. picked the submission with the least information. .
  • How retarded do you have to be to read Harry Potter books? I mean my IT manager read them!
  • Just wait until China gets an "early release" of book seven: Harry Potter and the Deadly Wang Ba [yahoo.com]

    Back Cover Summary:

    Harry's back for his final year at Hogwarts, but something's not right -- once again. Students who slip out at night to visit wang bas in Hogsmeade are dying in mysterious fires. When Dobby the house elf warns Harry not to go to the wang ba run by Voldemort, Harry has no choice but to dust off his invisibility cloak and investigate. Will Harry survive this last book of the series?
  • A spokesman for the Christopher Little Literary Agency, which represents her, was quoted as saying: 'This is a case which we are aware of and, as with all piracy matters throughout the world, take this issue extremely seriously.'

    since when is faking something 'piracy'??? is the FBI going to look for money 'piraters' now, and can i buy a 'pirate' rolex on canal st.?
    this 'pirate' thing is getting completely out of hand, it seems like the new definition just boils down to: 'someone who does something a media exec doesn't like'.

    excuse me while i put a patch over my eye and change the channel during the commercials...

  • A spokesman for the Christopher Little Literary Agency, which represents her, was quoted as saying: 'This is a case which we are aware of and, as with all piracy matters throughout the world, take this issue extremely seriously.'

    Although parody doesn't survive translation well, from the quotes given in the article, it sure feels like this is nothing more than a parody, like Barry Trotter and I'm sure some other less famous ones.

    And, as all good slashdotters should know, parody is fair use under almost all nations' copyright ordinances. So why is this a piracy issue?


  • Harry Potter and the Mysterious Centerfold
    Harry Potter and the Unnecessary Suppository
    Harry Potter and the Hookah of Fire
    Harry Potter and the Magic Stock Options
    Harry Potter and the Tryst with Oprah
    Harry Potter and the Special Master
    Harry Potter and the Brown Barking Vapor

    .
  • The writing in the Chinese book is not quite up to the standards which have made Rowling the most popular children's author of her generation.
    'Harry doesn't know how long it will take to wash the sticky cream cake off his face,' the book begins.

    'For a civilised young man it is disgusting to have dirt on any part of his body.

    'He lies in the high-quality china bathtub, keeps wiping his face, and thinks about Dali's face, which is as fat as the bottom of Aunt Penny.'


    The book is in CHINESE. I'm sure it reads better in the original. Chinese grammar does NOT directly correspond to English, so the awkward phrasing found here is purely a creation of the person who translated this passage to English.

    OTOH, it's a weird simile, and not having read the original books, I don't know if that's consistent with Rowling's writing style.

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