Google and China’s Censorship War, Spiderman 4 Canceled and June is Soon for the New iPhone

Back to school with Spiderman!

+ GOOGLE VS. CHINA: Following a perhaps government-initiated series of cyberattacks nosing into the business of suspected Chinese human rights activists, Google announces that it may pull out of China.

Of course, China censors the bejesus out of this news. Also, Microsoft fesses up that this whole debacle comes courtesy of an Internet Explorer loophole.

+ SPIDEY SENSE: Looks like Spiderman 4 will get totally bulldozed following the announcement that Sony Entertainment, Sam Raimi and Tobey Maguire are parting ways. The studio indicated that rather than continuing on with the Spidey movies as we know them, the next Spiderman film will be a total reinvention, with the rebooted Peter Parker web-slinging his way through highschool. Yes, that means no Kirsten Dunst, too. Sounds cool to me, actually- though I’d still love to see Venom (and Carnage!) get more screen time!

Does this mean that Mr. Raimi will soon turn to the much-anticipated World of Warcraft movie? Please, please let the WoW movie be in the 3D. Avatar made a believer out of me.

+ IPHONE 4G: Apple’s newest iPhone 4G might offer the touch-sensitive casing technology suspected in the tablet, a 5 megapixel camera (finally!) and could debut as early as June.

What are you wearing?

+ CATACLYSM EXPANSION: In other World of Warcraft news, rumor has it that the Cataclysm expansion friends and family (only!) Alpha just opened up to a lucky few.

And WoW’s armory finally, finally has a model-viewer, so that you can not only check out the look of a player’s gear, but also their goofy hair style. Hair styles in WoW are really important to me, because my character is a major elitist about his beautiful, flowing ponytail.

+ STORM’S NEW ‘HAWK: Check out a brand-new gay Storm action figure, complete with endearing faux-hawk! I always knew, Ororo!

+ H8ERS: Will homophobia in gaming ever go away? Sadly, I find myself oddly complacent about it- gay slurs are such a part of the gaming scenery now that I hardly notice it anymore, which likely perpetuates the problem. Though I will still most definitely report your ass in WoW. I hate your stupid ‘fear’ spells and your hatespeech, undead warlocks of the world!

I would never say those things to you.

+ WOMEN AND THE WII: Project Runway coming to the Wii? Do virtual sewing machines have any place in the gaming community? This kind of feels like another affront to serious female gamers everywhere (hello target demographic!), but maybe it would actually be cool. You know…if you’re into that sort of thing.

Taylor has written 137 articles for us.

17 Comments

  1. Girl, you ain’t seen nothing yet. Get ready for Modern Warfare 2. While Halo is the worse when it comes to slurs – MW2 is catching up. It was nice at the beginning when most of the people playing it where High as fuck. Bring on the CATACLYSM. What will they do to my lovely homeland of Darnassus. And Re: Spidey – they should really adapt the Ultimate Spider-Man comics. That would be the best route. Too bad Alicia Witt is too old to play MJ. I still can’t believe she passed on the role. WTF is she now anyway?

    • If XBL is the cess pool of the internet then MW2 is the dregs of xbl. The amount of verbal vomit that is spewed constantly is alarming. was that graphic enough for you guys? Good thing it is so easy to mute people…

      • MW2 is 10 times worse than halo, imo. TGFTM – thank gawd for toggle mute. Even my friends use sexist, homophobic, & racial slurs; it’s become way too natural. (Luckily I know where they live & can kick them in the shins next time I see them.) Nevertheless, that cute little kitten makes all the bad melt away. Aww

  2. I kind of want to go back and major in computer science, except the part where I don’t plan to use it but just want to know it. Which isn’t worth tuition. How the intertubes work is well over my head at the mo. :s

    But I can’t get over how so many sources are spinning this whole Google v. China thing as some sort of Google stand for human rights and focus on the email hacking. PLEASE. Google has always known China’s awful record on human rights and they know that censorship helps allow atrocities to continue. This clearly has everything to do with the intellectual property side of things. They “targeted at least 34 companies in the technology, financial and defense sectors” according to that article and THAT is what the pull-out threat is about. Not the subject lines of activists’ e-mails.

    That cat graphic was so cute it made me squeal. And only hours ago I was making a passionate argument as to why it is dumb of us to have domesticated anything with retractable claws. But it’s so cute with it’s controller!

    • yeah, def good point about the google thing. like, who doesn’t know about china’s egregious rights violations? and fuck, china’s a huge market. i am surprised it’s worth pulling out of there, but then again i haven’t fully (at all) versed myself in the controversy yet!

      • Reports are saying that they believe the attacks were from either Chinese gov’t officials or “proxies” thereof. But I think making it about censorship rather than intellectual property of large corporations allows Google to instantly get broad Western support for themselves while putting the Chinese gov’t in a difficult position (and some sites suggest that Google’s comparatively low market share there might have even more to do with the situation than the attacks).

        The Chinese gov’t cut Google service for an hour last summer while pressuring them to further limit their search results. All this while domestically the government was forced to slightly backpedal on and delay implementing its plan to require installation of Green Dam censorship software on all computers due to public criticism (they’re also being sued by a US company saying the program stole code). It’s not like anyone in China is at all unaware of censorship, but it could be an major embarrassment to the government to have a major Western company say they are pulling out because of it.
        V. interested to see how things develop!

        • I think this whole china thing is fascinating. Companies have alway wielded power inside government but to have Google shame China into changing their policy would be something incredible. I think for that to happen though there needs to be more traction in mainstream media outlet,s the NY Times is covering it but not front page.

  3. THANK GOODNESS re: Spider-Man. I have been hoping they would do this since the second one blew my mind with awful-ness.
    Kirsten Dunst though, she will be missed.

  4. I don’t have an Xbox and have no first-hand experience of XBL, but from what my friends tell me, even mentioning you’re a girl on your profile is asking for trouble, and mentioning that you’re gay (either gender) is tantamount to a request for a torrent of abuse.

    I’m intrigued about why the vocabulary of these things defaults to high-school-level slurs, when the demographics suggest that most players should be old enough to know better.

    I don’t play WoW, but play another MMORPG, Final Fantasy XI. I’ve made loads of gay friends through it, and can think of only one two instances of even mild homophobia. Whether I’ve just been lucky I don’t know, but one thing that slightly differentiates FFXI from WoW is that all the servers are global, so you get a bigger mix of nationalities and cultures. I don’t know if this mix actively creates a more liberal environment (there’s definitely a sizeable amount of tension between the western and japanese player-base), or I just haven’t learnt all the words for fag yet in spanish, japanese etc…

    I’d be interested in hearing of others’ experience in different online settings where they HAVEN’T had any anti-gay slurs, to try and work out the environments where people behave like grown-ups, and not like 13-year-old boys.

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