I received an email this morning that reads:
Free Accommodation & Free Transportation to Shaoxing!
“Here is your Golden Opportunity to enjoy a Free Trip to Shaoxing at the expense of their local government. Here you can take advantage of free Textile Sourcing Exhibitions and City Tours!”
This isn’t the first time I’ve received this sort of mass invitation, but it made me smile because I had just read just yesterday this article in the Times, which reports that the computers of Shaoxing have just been found to be the origin 21% of the world's “malicious hacker” emails.
I doubt very much that the city’s cyber-espionage activities are linked in any way to its government’s efforts to entice more foreigners to visit. Still, I thought it was an amusing coincidence.
As an aside, one thing that irritates me with these sorts of articles in western papers is the anti-China stance that they always seem to take – and the barrage of anti-China comments this inevitably generates from readers. The UK is clearly concerned about espionage from China, but the Brits and Americans are also engaging in the same activities. I guess for the papers it’s just a question of using attention-grabbing "news" hooks, and all things “China” continue to offer this.
Sooo, anyway, if any foreigners here in China do fancy an all-expenses-paid trip to Shaoxing, let me know and I'll forward you the email ;-)
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