IP and Law

Prices jump on Beijing porn, but is it possible not to buy?

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The Beijing Times reported earlier this week that the price of a porn movie DVD in Beijing's Zhongguancun had risen to 25 yuan following a sustained anti-filth campaign. The five-month sweep found 68,000 discs in Zhongguancun alone, and police delivered them to the Beijing Bureau of Press and Publication to be destroyed.

Formerly, interested viewers could get their fix for as little as 7 or 8 yuan a disc (the reports justifiably ignore free porn that circulates online, since as everyone knows, net users in China are protected from the seedier parts of the Internet). An opinion column in the following day's Mirror raised the interesting question of why police are boasting about the bull market for blue movies - if they have access to the vendors to know how much they are charging, why don't they just arrest them all or confiscate their wares? And if the anti-filth campaign's success is measured by the price increase, what does that say about the performance of previous campaigns, which didn't have much effect on prices?

At any rate, the whole thing calls to mind a classic post by an unknown author about the tenacity of the street hawkers. Here's a translation:


The Genius Porno Disc Vendor

The road home had tons of porn vendors, coming up non-stop to hawk their wares. It was really annoying. Then....

Disc vendor A: Want porno discs?
Me: Do you have DVDs?
Disc vendor A silently exits....

Continuing on

Disc vendor B: Have a look at some porno discs.
Me: Do you have DVDs?
Disc vendor B: Yes.
Me: Do you have D9s?
Disc vendor B silently exits....

Again, moving ahead

Disc vendor C: Want a porno disc?
Me: Do you have DVDs?
Disc vendor C: Yes.
Me: Do you have D9s?
Disc vendor C: Yes, and they're multi-angle.
Me: Region 1?
Disc vendor C: Every region.
Me: Chinese subtitles included?
Disc vendor C: The Chinese has closed-captioned subtitles. Also, interactive menus and a game.
Me: Damn. Do you have a Li Yapeng dub?
Disc vendor C silently exits....

Again, moving ahead

Disc vendor D: Want a porno disc?
Me: Do you have DVDs?
Disc vendor D: Yes.
Me: Do you have D9s?
Disc vendor D: Yes, and they're multi-angle.
Me: Region 1?
Disc vendor D: Every region.
Me: Chinese subtitles included?
Disc vendor D: The Chinese has CC subtitles. Also, interactive menus and a game.
Me: Damn. Do you have a Li Yapeng dub?
Disc vendor D: Yes. The girl is dubbed by Zhou Xun.
Me: Oh, is it the CCTV version directed by Zhang Jizhong?
Vendor D:....

Again, moving ahead

Disc vendor E: Want a porno disc?
Me: Do you have DVDs?
Disc vendor E: Yes.
Me: Do you have D9s?
Disc vendor E: Yes, and they're multi-angle.
Me: Region 1?
Disc vendor E: Every region.
Me: Chinese subtitles included?
Disc vendor E: The Chinese has CC subtitles. Also, interactive menus and a game.
Me: Damn. Do you have a Li Yapeng dub?
Disc vendor E: The old version has Li Yapeng's dub. The newest version Green Snake version is dubbed by Zhou Xun.
Me: Oh, is it the CCTV version directed by Zhang Jizhong?
Disc vendor E: Who else would it be?
Me: Does F4 guest star?
Disc vendor E: They all have a go, and you even see Vic Zhou's...
Me: Is there a director's commentary track?
Disc vendor E: Yes, and the double D9 also has a discussions with the director and actors, unreleased scenes, behind-the-scene clips and live interviews.
Me: Does it have many hidden featurettes?
Disc vendor E: There's an average of one every 20 seconds - you'll feel like there's too much to see.
Me: And the disc media?
Disc vendor E: ifpi media. Exchange it if there's a problem.
Me: Is there a box?
Disc vendor E: A white plastic box - the latest design of disc holder.
Me: What else comes with the disc?
Disc vendor E: It comes with a postcard, a poster, and a keyring, as well as an original soundtrack CD.
Me: How much is it?
Disc vendor E: For a double D9, the lowest price on the market: 30!!!
Me: Oh, I didn't bring my wallet today. Maybe later.
Disc vendor E faints on the spot------

Almost home, finally

Disc vendor F: Want a porno disc?
Me: Do you have DVDs?
Disc vendor F: Yes.
Me: Do you have D9s?
Disc vendor F: Yes, and they're multi-angle.
Me: Region 1?
Disc vendor F: Every region.
Me: Chinese subtitles included?
Disc vendor F: The Chinese has CC subtitles. Also, interactive menus and a game.
Me: Damn. Do you have a Li Yapeng dub?
Disc vendor F: The old version has Li Yapeng's dub. The newest version Green Snake version is dubbed by Zhou Xun.
Me: Oh, is it the CCTV version directed by Zhang Jizhong?
Disc vendor F: Who else would it be?
Me: Does F4 guest star?
Disc vendor F: They all have a go, and you even see Vic Zhou's...
Me: Is there a director's commentary track?
Disc vendor F: Yes, and the double D9 also has a discussions with the director and actors, unreleased scenes, behind-the-scene clips and live interviews.
Me: Does it have many hidden featurettes?
Disc vendor F: There's an average of one every 20 seconds - you'll feel like there's too much to see.
Me: And the disc media?
Disc vendor F: ifpi media. Exchange it if there's a problem.
Me: Is there a box?
Disc vendor F: A white plastic box - the latest design of disc holder.
Me: What else comes with the disc?
Disc vendor F: It comes with a postcard, a poster, and a keyring, as well as an original soundtrack CD.
Me: How much is it?
Disc vendor F: For a double D9, the lowest price on the market: 30!!!
Me: If I buy now, can I draw for a prize?
Disc vendor F: Not only is there a drawing, but if you buy 100 yuan you get 20 yuan free.
Me: I don't have a DVD player. Can I watch it on my computer?
Disc vendor F: No problem. This disc is compatible with all disc readers on the market today.
Me: What if my computer doesn't have a DVD drive?
Disc vendor F: Not a problem. Our company also deals in all types of optical storage equipment. You can even rent a player from us.
Me: You'll deliver to my door?
Disc vendor F: Look, aren't we waiting here especially to talk to you? We've even brought the equipment!
Me: But I haven't brought any money today. I just paid the rent, so maybe later.
Disc vendor F: That's not a problem. We can swipe your card, or if you don't have a card, we also support payment by mobile phone. You also could take out a mortgage, or pay in installments. We also provide other sorts of walk-up services.
Me: But I don't have a card or a phone or a savings account. The apartment key I just picked up from the roadway. These clothes are borrowed from someone else.
Disc vendor F: No problem. Things picked up off the ground have value, too. We have a special property value assessment team who can help you to appraise your property.
Me: But even if it is appraised, no one will want it!
Disc vendor F: No problem. We have a special pawn shop where you can trade your valuables.
Me: But, haven't you noticed that I'm blind?
Disc vendor F: Ha, ha! No problem. Our promise is that all of our customers will be able to enjoy the things that DVDs bring.
Me: Oh. You have that stuff for real?
Disc vendor F: Yes, that's right. From HK, Taiwan or the mainland, Thai and Russian, and even American.
Me: You have any from the South Pole?
Disc vendor F: Of course! Our company has over a million workers who can be found in every corner of the world. And we even have a new group of extraterrestrials, from as far away as Mars.
Me: Oh! I don't plan on buying anything now. You may leave now!
Disc vendor F: Oh, I'm sorry sir. Our work is to satisfy all customers. If you don't buy our company's products, that means that you are not satisfied with us, and I have to take you to Mars, where we'll ask our Martian workers to forcefully provide you with services, after which you may fill in a customer response form to make reasonable suggestions. Our motto is: Service first, and payment only after satisfaction!
Me: -----------!!!!!! ---I guess I'll take a disc.


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