Friday, May 29, 2015

vietnamese pho is from french soup feu

Pho actually doesn't have any Chinese influences. Northern style pho might have some ingredients found in Chinese dishes but there's no influence whatsoever. The story of pho is that there's this viet lady who married a French dude and because he's French he'd often asked her to cook soup with a beef based broth. She realized how much he liked it and wanted to make it a fusion of viet and French thus creating pho.

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

vietnamese was responsible for the killing field in cambodia comment

Bob Says:

You’ve forgot a few important key points: Today’s South Vietnam was a Cambodia territory. Read up on Champa, a kingdom that was completely annihilated by the Vietnamese. During the Vietnam War, Viet Cong was using Cambodia as their santuary (thanks to Sihanouk). The Viet Cong is responsible for the “killing field” in Cambodia.

Monday, May 25, 2015

The Greek Pontic Genocide

The Greek Pontic Genocide: Over 350,000 People Killed for Being Greek

The Pontic Genocide is one of the darkest moments in history, not only for Greeks but also for mankind. The Genocide erased from its ancestral and historic homeland in Pontus a culturally vibrant and unique part of the Greek population that had been fighting for its survival for about 3,000 years. An estimated 353,000 Pontian Greeks were killed during the genocide, and about 1,100,000 Greek Orthodox Christians from Asia Minor (modern day Turkey) were relocated to Greece in the population exchange of 1923, thus ending thousands of years of Hellenic civilization in Asia Minor. The worst part of this is that the Turkish government still denies the specific genocide, along with a few others they committed against mankind, and call the specific holocaust nothing but a historical harassment. (Source | Photo)

The Ottoman Greek Genocide (1914-1923)

6. The Ottoman Greek Genocide (1914-1923) Great Fire of Smyrna Wikipedia The Ottoman Greek Genocide was the systematic extermination of the indigenous Ottoman Greek (Rūm) inhabitants of Eastern Thrace and Asia Minor. It was perpetrated by the Ittihadist and Kemalist governments of the Ottoman Empire and the Republic of Turkey. Estimated killed: 1,400,000-1,700,000

The worst genocides of the 20th and 21st Centuries

The worst genocides of the 20th and 21st Centuries

by Piero Scaruffi | Email
TM, ®, Copyright © 2009 Piero Scaruffi All rights reserved.
Here is a tentative list of modern mass murderers and the estimated number of people killed by their orders (excluding enemy armies). In many cases (notably Stalin's and Mao's cases) one has to decide how to consider the millions who died indirectly because of their political decisions. The Chinese cultural revolution caused the death of 30 million people (according to the current Chinese government), but many died of hunger and ordinary Chinese (who, unlike us, were there) blame Mao's wife rather than Mao himself. Stalin is held responsible for the death of millions by Ukrainians, but "only" half a million people were killed by his order. Khomeini sent children to die in the war against Iraq, but it was a war.
Read the bottom of this page for frequently asked questions on controversial actions such as the atomic bombs, the Iraqi war, etc (that always involve the current superpower and usually the current president of that superpower).
I welcome feedback if i forgot anything or posted the wrong data, but PLEASE always provide reliable sources: webpages are gossips, not sources (and the worst one is Wikipedia, edited by anonymous people). Reliable sources are books written by professional historians who spent decades researching the event. Don't embarrass yourself.
An impressive number of readers don't seem to know what "20th century" means and keep sending me emails about the Atlantic slave trade, the Native Americans, the Irish famine, etc.
See also Wars and Casualties of the 20th and 21st Century: a genocide like the one in Rwanda that was not ordered by anyone is not listed in this page but it is in that page.
Ze-Dong Mao (China, 1958-61 and 1966-69, Tibet 1949-50)(see note 2)
Adolf Hitler (Germany, 1939-1945)12,000,000 (concentration camps and civilians deliberately killed in WWII plus 3 million Russian POWs left to die)
Leopold II of Belgium (Congo, 1886-1908)8,000,000
Jozef Stalin (USSR, 1932-39)7,000,000 (the gulags plus the purges plus Ukraine's famine)
Hideki Tojo (Japan, 1941-44)5,000,000 (civilians in WWII)
Ismail Enver (Ottoman Turkey, 1915-20)1,200,000 Armenians (1915) + 350,000 Greek Pontians and 480,000 Anatolian Greeks (1916-22) + 500,000 Assyrians (1915-20)
Pol Pot (Cambodia, 1975-79)1,700,000
Kim Il Sung (North Korea, 1948-94)1.6 million (purges and concentration camps)
Menghistu (Ethiopia, 1975-78)1,500,000
Yakubu Gowon (Biafra, 1967-1970)1,000,000
Leonid Brezhnev (Afghanistan, 1979-1982)900,000
Jean Kambanda (Rwanda, 1994)800,000
Saddam Hussein (Iran 1980-1990 and Kurdistan 1987-88)600,000
Tito (Yugoslavia, 1945-1980) 570,000
Suharto/Soeharto (Indonesian communists 1965-66)500,000
Fumimaro Konoe (Japan, 1937-39)500,000? (Chinese civilians)
Jonas Savimbi - but disputed by recent studies (Angola, 1975-2002)400,000
Mullah Omar - Taliban (Afghanistan, 1986-2001)400,000
Idi Amin (Uganda, 1969-1979)300,000
Yahya Khan (Pakistan, 1970-71) 300,000 (Bangladesh)
Ante Pavelic (Croatia, 1941-45) 359,000 (30,000 Jews, 29,000 Gipsies, 300,000 Serbs)
Benito Mussolini (Ethiopia, 1936; Libya, 1934-45; Yugoslavia, WWII)300,000
Mobutu Sese Seko (Zaire, 1965-97)?
Charles Taylor (Liberia, 1989-1996)220,000
Foday Sankoh (Sierra Leone, 1991-2000) 200,000
Suharto (Aceh, East Timor, New Guinea, 1975-98)200,000
Ho Chi Min (Vietnam, 1953-56)200,000
Michel Micombero (Burundi, 1972) 150,000
Slobodan Milosevic (Yugoslavia, 1992-99)100,000
Hassan Turabi (Sudan, 1989-1999)100,000
Syngman Rhee (South Korea, 1948-50) 80,000 (various massacres of civilians)
Richard Nixon (Vietnam, 1969-1974)70,000 (Vietnamese and Cambodian civilians)
Efrain Rios Montt - but disputed by recent studies (Guatemala, 1982-83)70,000
Papa Doc Duvalier (Haiti, 1957-71)60,000
Rafael Trujillo (Dominican Republic, 1930-61)50,000
Bashir Assad (Syria, 2012-13)50,000
Francisco Macias Nguema (Equatorial Guinea, 1969-79) 50,000
Hissene Habre (Chad, 1982-1990)40,000
Chiang Kai-shek (Taiwan, 1947)30,000 (popular uprising)
Vladimir Ilich Lenin (USSR, 1917-20)30,000 (dissidents executed)
Francisco Franco (Spain)30,000 (dissidents executed after the civil war)
Fidel Castro (Cuba, 1959-1999)30,000
Lyndon Johnson (Vietnam, 1963-1968)30,000
Maximiliano Hernandez Martinez (El Salvador, 1932)30,000
Hafez Al-Assad (Syria, 1980-2000)25,000
Khomeini (Iran, 1979-89)20,000
Robert Mugabe (Zimbabwe, 1982-87, Ndebele minority)20,000
Rafael Videla (Argentina, 1976-83)13,000
Guy Mollet (France, 1956-1957)10,000 (war in Algeria)
Harold McMillans (Britain, 1952-56, Kenya's Mau-Mau rebellion) 10,000
Jean-Bedel Bokassa (Centrafrica, 1966-79) ?
Paul Koroma (Sierra Leone, 1997) 6,000
Osama Bin Laden (worldwide, 1993-2001)3,500
Augusto Pinochet (Chile, 1973)3,000
I don't know if i have to be angry or honored that the Daily Mail (a newspaper that is famous for moralizing articles) plagiarized this old page of mine in October 2014:

As usual they also copied errors that i have since corrected on my own page ( their unauthorized copy).
For a list of casualties in wars, see this page.

Main sources:

  1. Note: this website has been banned in China and Turkey since 2006. Please help boycott these countries.
  2. Mao is widely credited in the West with tens of millions of killings (49-78,000,000) but the sources are generally vague and contradictory. It is particularly difficult to pin down the deaths of the Cultural Revolution on him. Even assuming that the numbers are correct (and living witnesses saw very few people die during those years), Mao certainly started it, but after a few months he had lost control over the events, and there is no evidence whatsoever that he ordered or approved the many killings committed in the name of the Cultural Revolution: they were not carried out by the army or the police but by radicals. Crimes committed by the "red guards" cannot be automatically blamed on him. His wife Jiang Qing is widely despised in China and considered to have exerted an evil influence on those events (and was eventually arrested). In 1968 Mao called for "Big Unity" between the radical and conservative factions that were fighting all over China (not for more blood but for less blood). Before dying he appointed Hua Guofeng, a provincial governor, as his successor bypassing all the senior officials who were responsible for the excesses of the Cultural Revolution. The Cultural Revolution indirectly caused starvation, but the number of people who died of that starvation is probably lower than Westerners thought (again, judging from living witnesses) and he can only be considered indirectly responsible for them. A failed policy does not constitute "genocide" (otherwise this list of genociders would be much longer).
  3. The atrocities committed by right-wing dictators have always been easier to track down than the crimes against humanity committed by communist leaders, so the figures for communist leaders like Stalin and Mao are mere guesses. (To be fair, the numbers for Stalin have decreased in recent years by admission of the Ukrainian authorities). We also don't know how many dissidents have been killed by order of Kim Il Sung in North Korea, although Westerners suspect many thousands.
  4. I often get asked if Hiroshima/Nagasaki qualify as a genocide. I disagree. First of all, why only nuclear weapons? The carpet bombings of German cities and of Tokyo killed the same numbers of people. Second, Winston Churchill and Harry Truman did not start that war: they ended it. It is even debatable if these bombings killed or saved lives: Hiroshima probably saved a lot of Japanese lives, because a long protracted invasion like the one that took place in Germany would have killed a lot more people (Germany lost 2 million people, Japan only 300,000, because Japan was never invaded, while Germany was invaded from all sides). Actually, more Japanese died in two weeks of battles with the Soviet Union in Manchuria than in the two nuclear bombings. As horrific as it sounds, i suspect that a nuclear bomb on Berlin would have killed 100,000 people but caused Germany to surrender right away, thus saving many German lives. (I know, it is gruesome to count dead bodies like this; but, again, i didn't start that war, Germany and Japan started it).
    The USA had a casualty rate of 35% in the battle of Okinawa: they expected to lose one million soldiers in a land invasion of Japan, and the estimates were that Japan would lose the same number of soldiers and many more civilians. Most historians believe that it was the atomic bomb that convinced Japan to surrender, and it was the second one: after the first one, there were still members of the Japanese cabinet who were opposed to surrender (the cabinet had to be unanimous in order for the emperor to surrender). The dissenters who wanted to continue the war even tried a coup to overthrow the emperor rather than obey the order to surrender.
    After the first bomb, Nishina (head of the Japanese nuclear program) was asked if it were possible that the USA could build another atomic bomb within six months: obviously the people who asked him the question were not going to surrender unless a second bomb was possible. Koichi Kido, advisor to emperor Hirohito, said: "We of the peace party were assisted by the atomic bomb in our endeavor to end the war." Hisatsune Sakomizu, chief secretary of Cabinet, said that the atomic bombs were a "golden opportunity given by heaven for Japan to end the war." Thus the Japanese themselves (those who wanted to surrender) seem to indicate that the two atomic bombs were indispensable to end a war that was killing hundreds of thousands of people per battle (the battle of Okinawa killed more Japanese than the atomic bomb on Nagasaki).
    It is also estimated that throughout Japan-occupied Asia about 200,000 civilians were dying every month (of disease, hunger, etc): if the atomic bombs helped Japan surrender even just six months earlier, that saved the lives of one million Indonesians, Indochinese, Philipinos, Chinese, etc. (Notable dissenting voices were the two most powerful USA generals, Dwight Eisenhower and Douglas MacArthur, who both felt that the atomic bombs were unnecessary to finish Japan).
    People die in wars. During the previous world-war, millions died of everything from guns to chemical weapons. The fact that a more or less efficient weapon is used to fight a war does not constitute genocide, per se. It is not the weapon, but the intent. Churchill's and Truman's intent was to end the war, not to exterminate the peoples (which they could have done easily, had they wanted to). In fact, i think that Churchill and Truman are exemplary of how to treat a defeated enemy: instead of annihilating the enemies, they helped Germany and Japan to rebuild themselves and become stronger and wealthier than they had been before the war. It may have been the first time in history.
    Furthermore, we know that Werner Heisenberg in Germany and Yoshio Nishina in Japan were working on an atomic bomb: what if they had had the time to complete one? Heisenberg in Germany had failed to correctly calculate the critical mass of uranium required to sustain a chain reaction, but Nishina in Japan had just done that in 1944. It was a matter of time before German and Japanese scientists would find out the right recipe. Thus the first bomb saved a lot of lives, probably millions of lives (not just Japanese lives, but lives of all the nations that were being massacred by the Japanese). Last but not least, the USA dropped 720,000 leaflets on Hiroshima and other cities two days earlier, warning of the impending destruction of the city.
    It is certainly debatable, instead, if the second atomic bomb was necessary. The USA only waited three days to see the effect of the first atomic bomb and of its leaflets. Today sitting in our living rooms we can calmly debate this issue forever. Of course, it was a different kind of decision for the man sitting in the White House in the middle of a world war that had been raging for four years.
  5. I've been asked why i blame the USA only for part of the civilian deaths in Vietnam while i blame the Soviet Union for all of the civilian casualties in Afghanistan. The USA "invasion" of Vietnam is not as clearcut as the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan:
    1. Even today many in Vietnam think that the aggressor was North Vietnam, not the USA, at least at the beginning, whereas everybody in Afghanistan blames the Soviet Union for that invasion. Nobody welcomed the Soviet Union, whereas about half of Vietnam welcomed the USA.
    2. When the Soviet Union withdrew, almost no Afghani followed them, whereas, when the USA withdrew, about eight million Vietnamese left with them and about three million ran away from Vietnam in the following decades risking their lives (the "boat people").
    3. There are documented large-scale atrocities by the North Vietnamese against their own population (read the Black Book of Communism) while i haven't seen evidence of any large-scale atrocity by the Afghani fighters against their own population
    4. The Soviet Union tried to invade the WHOLE of Afghanistan. The USA never tried to invade the northern part of Vietnam: it simply fought the Vietcong that wanted to annex south Vietnam to north Vietnam (if you read the history of the country, north and south Vietnam have fought wars for more than 1,000 years: go to the Timeline of Indochina and look for Annam and Champa. the ancient names of the two kingdoms). When the USA bombed civilians in North Vietnam, then i consider it a war crime.
  6. The most frequently asked questions are always about current unpopular USA presidents: Reagan, Bush I, Clinton, Bush II... The moment the USA elects a new president, i start receiving emails asking to add him to the list of "genociders". The moment the president leaves office the same people forget about him and jump on the next one. Can we consider George W Bush a genocider due to all of the civilians killed in Iraq under his watch? I don't think so, because the vast majority of civilians killed in Iraq were NOT killed by US troops and certainly not by his order. It is genocide, but the "genociders" are others, and the situation is still too murky to decide who exactly killed those 100,000 civilians. (If Bush is indirectly guilty of it, then certainly Islam is too). The USA bears some clear responsibilities for the chaos, but ineptitude, miscalculation, ignorance, etc do not qualify as genocide. Otherwise the United Nations and France would be responsible for the genocide in Rwanda (900,000 people). Even if one wanted to count all the civilians killed in that civil war as Bush's and Blair's responsibility, it would be (as of 2013, long after the USA and Britain withdrew) 120,000 people in ten years, i.e. 12,000 a year. In 20 years Saddam Hussein was responsible for the killing of 600,000 people (that he personally ordered), an average of 30,000 a year plus the victims of his invasion of Iran. Therefore, technically speaking one could argue that the war, by removing Saddam, saved lives. Putin would be a better candidate for "genocider", since the vast majority of Chechen civilians killed under his watch were killed by Russian troops. However, i have never received a single email nominating Putin...
  7. Specifically about Bush II (the hot topic between 2003 and 2008). I have seen no evidence whatsoever that he or anybody working for him or the British prime minister or the Australian prime minister wanted to kill Iraqi civilians. And even less evidence that Iraqi civilians were killed in any large number by US soldiers. The Iraqi civilians killed by US soldiers are estimated at about 4% of all deaths, which is a little over 5,000. With all due respect for those families, a seven-year war that kills only 5,000 people (less than 1,000 a year) does not register anywhere in the history of the world. All the other civilians were killed by militias, suicide bombers, etc. and almost always in the name of Islam (so it would be more appropriate to vent your anger at that religion than at the USA). In fact, documents show that some caution was taken by the US and Britain to avoid mass civilian casualties. Compare with Vietnam, when the US bombed densely populated areas knowing that thousands of civilians would die. In fact, the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan might be the first large-scale wars in which the winners went out of their way to avoid mass civilian casualties. Compare with any other war. Future generations (who will face other crises and will be more concerned with their presidents than with Bush II) may see more clearly who is responsible for those killings. Most of them were killed by fellow Iraqis or at least fellow Muslims, not by US soldiers. Once we remove all the personal emotions against this or that politician, it is self-evident who/what killed those Iraqi civilians. If you simply scream hysterically against the president of the USA, you are not helping solve the real problem of those places.
  8. Coming to more serious issues, Lothar von Trotha massacred the Herero and Namaqua in Namibia in 1904-1907. That episode is not listed here (despite the large number of victims) because the German government never ordered those massacres. Once the facts became known, outrage in Germany among the political class forced the Kaiser to fire Von Trotha. So i consider this event the folly of one overzealous and racist man rather than a real genocide.

viet was khmer

Khmer Freedom
24 January at 00:01
Youn is a normal calling use by Thai, Laos and Khmer. .. When we talk about Youn invading Cambodia we know this basis on personal experience that they did… Ho Chin Minh told his Vietnam citizens they must prosper to take resources from Maykong River by any possibility.
Ho Chin Minh went to Hong Kong in 1930s to make IndoChinous of South Cambodia, but later was arrested by the Chinese government for 2 years… after Ho Chin Minh met Noradom Sinhanuk in Hanoi, they build a great relationship as god-father and god-son. He promise he can make Noradom Sinhanuk king of Cambodia if he agrees to some political conditions. 1941 Sinahuk became king, than he signed a 99 years territory’s right of Southern Cambodia to Vietnam, later Ho Chin Minh forge the concept of the treaty and force Southern Cambodia to today modern Vietnam, including Koh Tral island of Cambodia. ..and supplied weapons to the POL POT regime plot to destroy the entire country using the third hand of teenagers, farmer, exile prison, with the ruling and permission of King Noradom Sinhanuk, to attack against Marshal Lon Nol and Cambodia government and scholar. On January 17, 1979 Vietnam did not liberated Cambodia from Pol Pot, it a circuit show to make people believe Vietnam help Cambodia, which in reality it just an evil spot all along… Two month ago, Prime Minister Hun Sen, private told his fellow interrogation that “I was just a puppet of the “Youn” (Vietnam). “If you want me to be straight forward with you, I be straight forward with you, “Youn” has brought over 100,000+ undercover arm soldier in our Country now” .
As for me, I’m Khmer, I respect all races, religion and ethics, “youn” actually is YAMMIN closed to the border of China in the old old days, they look light skin like Chinese, and Nam Viet was closer to Cambodia, so people Cambodia call today Vietnam because they want to express “Youn” is to comparison to Chinese/Vietnamese communist, only saying to the tyranny leader of Vietnam, not to the ethical Vietnam citizens or person.

Friday, May 15, 2015

Korean sounds like Spanish and sometimes Portuguese?

Korean sounds like Spanish and sometimes Portuguese?

   When I put the CD of Seungri in my LG Hi-Fi System I had the impression that I was listening to a Spanish CD, because most of the words remembered me spanishes words, and with the final "o", and sometimes "a", wich is very commom too in Spanish and Portuguese, Italian. I felt it very similar with Spanish I don't know why. I love Korean, I think it's more melodic than japanese. And I think to me as a Portuguese speaker that Korean sounds like a latin language sometimes, it's very cool. I mean Korean sounds like japanese but a bit more smoother I would say, a bit more melodic and variable. In another song I felt Korean sounded like Italian, very similar to Italian words as sarà, komun (comum - portuguese). The man sung "Heya tera, baila che heya sò sará." very Italian, but it was Korean. Maybe it's more similar to Italian.
Update:     And when I put in google translator the Italian Voice to read the romanization of Korean it's the most perfect language that can pronounce Korean in the correct way, it's very interesting, I think Korean is very similar to Italian in pronounciation. The both language shares the same sound of "ae" (è -it, é´-pt) and "eo" (ò-it ó-pt) which with Portuguese makes these three languages be more vocalic. And there are a lot of words in Korean that is similar to Portuguese too.
 Some examples:
 Miina (Korean) = Mina (Portuguese slang for girl)
 Babo (Korean) = Babo (Italian - grandfather)
 Sara (Korean) = Sarà (Italian - will be)
 Ch'ae (Korean) = C'è (Italian - to have)
 Ne-ga (Korean) = Nega (Portuguese - a brown skinned woman)
 Italian seems me the most similar langauge to Korean in pronounce.

Update 2:     And when I put in google translator the Italian Voice to read the romanization of Korean it's the most perfect language that can pronounce Korean in the correct way, it's very interesting, I think Korean is very similar to Italian in pronounciation. The both language shares the same sound of "ae" (è -it, é´-pt) and "eo" (ò-it ó-pt) which with Portuguese makes these three languages be more vocalic. And there are a lot of words in Korean that is similar to Portuguese too.
 Some examples:
 Miina (Korean) = Mina (Portuguese slang for girl)
 Babo (Korean) = Babo (Italian - grandfather)
 Sara (Korean) = Sarà (Italian - will be)
 Ch'ae (Korean) = C'è (Italian - to have)
 Ne-ga (Korean) = Nega (Portuguese - a brown skinned woman)
 Italian seems me the most similar langauge to Korean in pronounce.

 Best Answer:   I guess. If you know Spanish, Korean is easy to pronounce.
 I don't know how to explain it but hmm I guess Spanish kinda has a soft kind of tone (language-wise) that's similar to Korean's (language). If you only know something like English or Flemish or whatever, it'll be kind of tough to copy and use the right pronunciation. Do you understand me? XD Sometimes when I explain, only I understand, but I don't know. Ahhh I suck haha.
 Hmmm. . .
 Saram = Korean for PERSON.
 You can pronounce SARAM in a Spanish way and it still sounds like it's coming from a Korean's mouth. Hahaha.
 For some people who can't really pronounce it that way would make SARAM sound kind of SAH RAUM ...
 BUT Spanish, Italian AND Portuguese have NOTHING in common with Korean. No word roots, no grammar stuff, NOTHING.
 Do you understand me? :( :) 

갬보스 · 4 years ago 

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 Korean is not similar to Spanish and Portuguese. If you think that, look again and to my ears, Korean sounds more like Chinese sounds. Even Japanese ends in yo but if you don't know what those words are for, how can you make these assumptions? Yo is for emphasis and in Korean they are probably verb forms. I haven't studied Korean but I don't know how it sounds like Italian to you. Italian sounds way different. I suppose you better get learning.

Sternfluss  · 4 years ago 

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A limine 

 mina is portuguese slang for girl?? I think it's N-I-N-A
 nega is portuguese "brown skinned..."? since when?

A limine  · 4 years ago 

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Thursday, May 14, 2015

베트남여자의 귀여움에도 끌리지만 인도네시아여자의 이런 쾌활함에도 끌림..

귀엽고 연약한 이미지의 베트남여자와는 먼가 다른이런 인도네시아여자의 쾌활함과 파워풀함에도 많이 끌림....

베트남여자가 소녀같이 섬세하면서 쾌활함까지 다 같췄다면 인도네시아여자는 에너지가 넘치고 쾌활하면서도 동시에 섬세함도 다 갖췄음....
베트남여자는 소녀같이 섬세한 가운데 나오는 쾌활함에 반한다면, 인도네시아여자는 반대로 에너지가 넘치고 쾌활한 가운데 나오는 섬세함에 반함....

Greece is the greatest civilization in the history

The Origins of Greek Mathematics
external Though the Greeks certainly borrowed from other civilizations, they built a culture and civilization on their own which is
  • The most impressive of all civilizations,
  • The most influential in Western culture,
  • The most decisive in founding mathematics as we know it.
Basic facts about the origin of Greek civilization and its mathematics.
  • The best estimate is that the Greek civilization dates back to 2800 B.C. -- just about the time of the construction of the great pyramids in Egypt. The Greeks settled in Asia Minor, possibly their original home, in the area of modern Greece, and in southern Italy, Sicily, Crete, Rhodes, Delos, and North Africa.
  • About 775 B.C. they changed from a hieroglyphic writing to the Phoenician alphabet. This allowed them to become more literate, or at least more facile in their ability to express conceptual thought.
  • The ancient Greek civilization lasted until about 600 B.C.
  • The Egyptian and Babylonian influence was greatest in Miletus, a city of Ionia in Asia Minor and the birthplace of Greek philosophy, mathematics and science.
  • From the viewpoint of its mathematics, it is best to distinguish between the two periods: the classical period from about 600 B.C. to 300 B.C. and the Alexandrian or Hellenistic period from 300 B.C. to 300 A.D. Indeed, from about 350 B.C. the center of mathematics moved from Athens to Alexandria (in Egypt), the city built by Alexander the Great (358 -323 B.C.). It remained the center of mathematics for a millennium until the library was sacked by the Muslims in about 700 A.D.
The Sources of Greek Mathematics In actual fact, our direct knowledge of Greek mathematics is less reliable than that of the older Egyptian and Babylonian mathematics, because none of the original manuscripts are extant. There are two sources:
  • Byzantine Greek codices (manuscript books) written 500-1500 years after the Greek works were composed.
  • Arabic translations of Greek works and Latin translations of the Arabic versions. (Were there changes to the originals?)
  • Moreover, we do not know even if these works were made from the originals. For example, Heron made a number of changes in Euclid's Elements, adding new cases, providing different proofs and converses. Likewise for Theon of Alexandria (400 A. D.).
The Greeks wrote histories of Mathematics:
  • Eudemus ( century B.C.), a member of Aristotle's school wrote historiesgif of arithmetic, geometry and astronomy (lost),
  • Theophrastus (c. 372-c. 287 B.C.) wrote a history of physics (lost).
  • Pappus (late cent A.D.) wrote the Mathematical Collection, an account of classical mathematics from Euclid to Ptolemy (extant).
  • Pappus wrote Treasury of Analysis, a collection of the Greek works themselves (lost).
  • Proclus (A.D. 410-485) wrote the Commentary, treating Book I of Euclid and contains quotations due to Eudemus (extant).
  • various fragments of others.
The Major Schools of Greek Mathematics
  • The Ionian School was founded by Thales (c. 643- c. 546 B.C.). Students included Anaximandergif (c. 610-c. 547 B.C.) and Anaximenesgif(c. 550-c. 480 B.C.). Thales is sometimes credited with having given the first deductive proofs.gif
    • The importance of the Ionian School for philosophy and the philosophy of science is however without dispute.
    externalThales The Major Schools of Greek Mathematics
  • The Pythagorean School was founded by Pythagoras in about 585 B.C. More on this later. A brief list of Pythagorean contributions includes:
    1. Philosophy.
    2. The study of proportion.
    3. The study of plane and solid geometry.
    4. Number theory.
    5. The theory of proof.
    6. The discovery of incommensurables.gif
  • The Eleatic School from the southern Italian city of Elea was led at one time by Zeno who brought to the fore the contradictions between the discrete and the continuous, the decomposable and indecomposable. Indeed, Zeno directed his arguments against both opposing views of the day that space and time are infinitely divisible; thus motion is continuous and smooth, and the other that space and time are made up of indivisible small intervals, in which case motion is a succession of minute jerks. Zeno's Paradoxes Zeno constructed his paradoxes to illustrate that current notions of motion are unclear, that whether one viewed time or space as continuous or discrete, there are contradictions. They are Dichotomy. To get to a fixed point one must cover the halfway mark, and then the halfway mark of what remains, etc. Achilles. Essentially the same for a moving point. Arrow. An object in flight occupies a space equal to itself but that which occupies a space equal to itself is not in motion. Stade. Suppose there is a smallest instant of time. Then time must be further divisible! external Now, the idea is this: if there is a smallest instant of time and if the farthest that a block can move in that instant is the length of one block, then if we move the set B to the right that length in the smallest instant and the set C to the left in that instant, then the net shift of the sets B and C is two blocks. Thus there must be a smaller instant of time when the relative shift is just one block. The Eleatic School
  • Democritus of Abdera (ca. 460-370 B.C.) should also be included with the Eleatics. One of a half a dozen great figures of this era, he was renown for many different abilities. Examples:
    • He was a proponent of the materialistic atomic doctrine.
    • He wrote books on numbers, geometry, tangencies, and irrationals. (His work in geometry was said to be significant.)
    • He discoveredgif that the volumes of a cone and a pyramid are 1/3 the volumes of the respective cylinder and prism.
  • The Sophist School ( 480 B.C.) was centered in Athens, just after the final defeat of the Persians.gif
    Emphasis was given to abstract reasoning and to the goal of using reason to understand the universe.
    This school had amongst its chief pursuits the use of mathematics to understand the function of the universe.
    At this time many efforts were made to solve the three great problems of antiquity: doubling the cube, squaring the circle, and trisecting an angle -- with just a straight edge and compass.
    One member of this school was Hippias of Elisgif (ca. 460 B.C.) who discovered the ] trisectrix, which he showed could be used to trisect any angle. external How to draw a trisectrix: Imagine a radial arm (like a minute hand of a clock) rotating at uniform speed about the origin from the vertical position to the horizontal position in some fixed period of time. (That is from 12 O'clock to 3 O'clock.) The tip of the arm makes a quarter circle as shown in red in the picture. Now imagine a horizontal (parallel to the x-axis) arm falling at uniform speed from the top of arm to the origin in exactly the same time. The trisectrix is the intersection of the two arms. The curve traced in black is the trisectrix. As you can see, the trisectrix is a dynamically generated curve. The Platonic School and those subsequent did not accept such curves as sufficiently ``pure" for the purposes of geometric constructions.
    Hippocrates of Chios, though probably a Pythagorean computed the quadrature of certain lunes. (This is the first correct proof of the area of a curvilinear figure.) He also was able to duplicate the cube by finding two mean proportionals (Take a=1 and b=2 in a:x=x:y=y:b. Solution: , the cube root of 2.)

  • The Platonic School, the most famous of all was founded by Plato (427-327 B.C.) in 387 B.C. in Athens. Pythagorean forerunners of the school, Theodorusgif of Cyrene and Archytasgif of Tarentum, through their teachings, produced a strong Pythagorean influence in the entire Platonic school.
    • Members of the school included Menaechmusgif and his brother Dinostratusgif and Theaetetusgif(c. 415-369 B.C.)
    • According to Proclus, Menaechmus was one of those who ``made the whole of geometry more perfect". We know little of the details. He was the teacher of Alexander the great, and when Alexander asked for a shortcut to geometry, he is said to have replied,
      ``O King, for traveling over the country there are royal roads and roads for common citizens; but in geometry these is one road for all."
    • As the inventor of the conics Menaechmus no doubt was aware of many of the now familiar properties of conics, including asymptotes. He was also probably aware of the solution of the duplication of the cube problem by intersecting the parabola and the hyperbola , for which the solution is . For, solving both for x yields eqnarray127
    • The academy of Plato was much like a modern university. There were grounds, buildings, students, and formal course taught by Plato and his aides.
    • During the classical period, mathematics and philosophy were favored.
    • Plato was not a mathematician -- but was a strong advocate of all of mathematics.
    • Plato believed that the perfect ideals of physical objects are the reality. The world of ideals and relationships among them is permanent, ageless, incorruptible, and universal.
    • The Platonists are credited with discovery of two methods of proof, the method of analysisgif and the reductio ad absurdum.gif
    • Plato affirmed the deductive organization of knowledge, and was first to systematize the rules of rigorous demonstration.
    • The academy was closed by the Christian emperor Justinian in A.D. 529 because it taught ``pagan and perverse learning".

  • The School of Eudoxus founded by Eudoxus (c. 408 B.C.), the most famous of all the classical Greek mathematicians and second only to Archimedes.
    • Eudoxus  developed the theory of proportion, partly to account for and study the incommensurables (irrationals).
    • He produced many theorems in plane geometry and furthered the logical organization of proof.
    • He also introduced the notion of magnitude.
    • He gave the first rigorous proof on the quadrature of the circle. (Proposition. The areas of two circles are as the squares of their diameters. gif)
  • The School of Aristotle, called the Lyceum, founded by Aristotle (384-322 B.C.) followed the Platonic school. It had a garden, a lecture room, and an altar to the Muses. external The School of Aristotle Aristotle set the philosophy of physics, mathematics, and reality on a foundations that would carry it to modern times. He viewed the sciences as being of three types -- theoretical (math physics, logic and metaphysics), productive (the arts), and the practical (ethics, politics). He contributed little to mathematics however,
    ...his views on the nature of mathematics and its relations to the physical world were highly influential. Whereas Plato believed that there was an independent, eternally existing world of ideas which constituted the reality of the universe and that mathematical concepts were part of this world,gif Aristotle favored concrete matter or substancegif.
    Aristotle regards the notion of definitiongif as a significant aspect of argument. He required that definitions reference to prior objects. The definition, 'A point is that which has no part', would be unacceptable. Aristotle  also treats the basic principles of mathematics, distinguishing between axioms and postulates.
    • Axioms include the laws of logic, the law of contradiction, etc.
    • The postulates need not be self-evident, but their truth must be sustained by the results derived from them.
    Euclid uses this distinction. Aristotle  explored the relation of the point to the line -- again the problem of the indecomposable and decomposable. Aristotle  makes the distinction between potential infinity and actual infinitygif. He states only the former actually exists, in all regards. Aristotle  is credited with the invention of logic, through the syllogism.
    1. The law of contradiction. (not T and F)
    2. The law of the excluded middle. (T or F)
    His logic remained unchallenged until the century. Even Aristotle  regarded logic as an independent subject that should precede science and mathematics. Aristotle 's influence has been immeasurably vast.

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

most watched single sporting event in china is football

Chapter 8 – Sports
[Note: below is Chapter 8 from Great Wall of Numbers]
In 2011 I was teaching at a college in Zhongshan, Guangdong – a mid-sized city in the Pearl River Delta manufacturing region of southern China.  During lunch I would regularly eat at the campus cafeteria.  The faculty dining area was in a separate room connected with the main student dining area.  Throughout the month of June, the students – typically men but also women – would pack their dining area to catch a glimpse of the NBA playoffs on TV’s hanging from the ceiling (and also because it was one of the few rooms with reliable air conditioning – unfortunately their dormitories only had fans).  For nearly an entire month the area was crowded almost shoulder-to-shoulder, even during final exams.  And on numerous occasions, my students, including one named Jason Xu from Dongguan, asked me repeatedly to bring back basketball ‘high tops’ whenever I traveled back to the US.  This task typically involved looking through Eastbay catalogs with them and listening to their dreams of one day wearing “authentic” NBA apparel.
Is this just an isolated group of NBA fans?  No, according to sport consultant Matt Beyer, “the NBA has close to 30 official corporate partnerships specific to China.”1 Thus while you may see Chinese apparel companies advertising in the background during an NBA game – if the student body at the college in Zhongshan is any indication – there is a similarly large potential for US brands to advertise in the Chinese Basketball Association (CBA) as well.
In fact, commissioner David Stern estimated that the NBA’s revenue generated from China will reach $150 million in 2012 (based on television and digital broadcast rights).  And according to Stern, “NBA viewership in China rose 18 percent last year [2011]” and will grow 10% a year for the foreseeable future.2 Furthermore, CCTV 5, a state-owned TV station that focuses on sports recently signed a new agreement with the NBA to increase its live-coverage, programming and analysis based on content “produced exclusively for China.”3 The NBA’s relationship with CCTV 5 dates back to 1987 when the All-Star game was broadcast on the mainland.4
What kind of sponsorships takes place in this cultural-sport trade?
For instance, while Yao Ming has a $10 million contract with Reebok, in 2006, Shaquille O’Neal signed a five-year sponsorship deal worth $1.25 million with Li-Ning (and later expanded to $6.2 million and again to $10 million).56 Li-Ning is one of the largest sports shoe and apparel companies in China, with $1.4 billion in revenue for 2011.7 Similarly, O’Neal’s teammate, Dwayne Wade recently cancelled his sponsorship with Nike and signed for a percentage of equity stake with Li-Ning.8 Yet for comparison, Nike did more business in China alone in 2011 ($2.1 billion) than Li-Ning’s total global revenue.910 And for perspective, according to Boston Consulting Group, the apparel market in China is expected to generate $204 billion by 2020 (triple from 2010).11
How popular is basketball on the mainland?  According to Ying Wushanley, a professor at Millersville University:
It is estimated that more than 300 million people play basketball throughout China; NBA games are watched by more than 30 million viewers per week; retail stores are saturated with NBA merchandise; has become the most popular single sports website in China; and NBA is consistently the most searched sports term on China’s top search engine
The Chinese Basketball Association (CBA) is the top professional league in China.  It has been around since 1995 but has had its share of growing pains.  According to FORTUNE magazine, the league incurred a loss of nearly $17 million in the 2008-2009 season because a significant portion of the expenses go towards recruiting overseas talent.13 For example, in October 2012 Tracy McGrady, a seven-time All-Star for the Houston Rockets signed a $1 million annual contract with the Qingdao Eagles of the CBA.14 Two weeks later he was greeted at the airport by a huge fanbase, which itself attracted media coverage.15 Even non-CBA players are sometimes hot commodities.  For example, this past summer, Jeremy Lin (林书豪 of ‘Linsanity’) signed a two-year sponsorship agreement with KFC, both of whom have huge followings on the mainland (see Chapter 16).1617
And while the domestic league continues to grow and recruit global talent (of note, in the 2009-2010 season, 19 of the top 20 scorers were foreigners18 ), this is not the only sport being played on the mainland.1920
Kicking and skating
While Yao Ming is probably the best known Chinese athlete abroad, the domestic basketball industry – while large (according to both FORTUNE and Ying, more than 300 million play it) – is just one of several sport markets.  As I discuss below, in addition to soccer and tennis, both badminton and table tennis, while seemingly pedestrian in the West, are each have the potential to become multibillion dollar sports in China.
The Chinese Super League (CSL) is the highest level of professional soccer in China has been around since 2004.  While its ticket gate revenue is relatively low, at an estimated $33 million a year, its 17,651 in average attendance is the highest in Asia.21 Soccer, as I note below, is a popular sport played by large portions of the population through pick-up games and several organized leagues (especially in high school and college).
As part of a new 10-year deal with CCTV (the state broadcasting company), in 2012 IMG (one of the largest sports and media firms in the world) was brought in to help market, brand, develop and manage the CSL into a topflight global league.22 Similarly, in March 2013, it was announced that David Beckham will be paid several million euros to become the new CSL Ambassador in an effort to bolster the CSL image overseas.23 Yet despite having a poor national soccer team (plagued by scandals) that has failed to qualify for the World Cup all but once (2002), an estimated 700 million Chinese watched the 2006 World Cup and 24 million Chinese fans watched the 2010 match between Greece and South Korea.2425 The 2004 Asian Cup final between China and Japan drew 250 million viewers in China, making it the “most watched single sports event in the history of Chinese television.”26 Thus US brand awareness firms on Madison Avenue (such as IMG) have a potentially large audience with which they can position their clients’ products.
Sport agents could look at the CSL market as a new venue for their clients.  Guangzhou’s Evergrande team hired Marcello Lippi of Italy for $12.5 million, the third highest ever for a coach.  And Shanghai’s Senghua team signed Nicolas Anelka for $13.3 million, coincidentally the third highest for a player.  All told, “forty three percent of the [league’s] revenue goes to foreign players.”27 Similarly if you are a Western trainer or coach, you may find large monetary incentives to train and coach Chinese athletes.  China’s meteoric rise in the Olympic swimming events is in large part due to Australian coaches who were lured over in part by financial incentives.  For example, Ken Wood noted that China pays four times the amount he would get in Australia.282930
Other non-traditional sports have begun to make inroads as well.  Skateboarding, for instance, has begun to spread throughout the larger cities of China and as of 2009, there are between 40-50,000 active skateboarders.31 At 12,000 square meters, SMP Skatepark in Shanghai is purportedly the largest skate park in the world and home to around 2,000 members.3233
Playing without nets
My first apartment in China was next to the outdoor basketball courts at the college I was teaching at.  During the daytime there were relatively few students on the courts.  But after 5pm, all 20 hoops were roughly jam packed with mostly young Chinese men (and sometimes women).  Just next to the courts was a soccer field, also filled with several soccer teams comprised of a similar demographic distribution.
Yet despite the popularity of soccer and football, at dusk many students, faculty and families would take to the campus streets and play badminton just like a scene out of The Sandlot, sans James Earl Jones.  Hours after sunset, up and down these streets the groups continued to play – until the mosquitoes became too much to bear.  And they did it all without nets.
With similar enthusiasm, the numerous ping pong tables at the student union and faculty centers were continuously occupied by both young and old alike.  None of the equipment was new, or the best – it simply was good enough as Voltaire might say.  And nearly identical recreation patterns are found across the entire country.  As a consequence Chinese athletes have dominated the medal table at nearly ever badminton and table tennis event over the past decade at the summer Olympics and World Games.
For example, Lin Dan is a household name and the first person to ever win the Super Grand Slam in badminton (winning all 9 major badminton events).  His image now graces the cover of numerous marketing campaigns – from Red Bull to Gillette – netting him at least $1.9 million in sponsorships annually (and ranking him the 33rd “most marketable athlete”).34
Table tennis (ping pong) is the national sport of China and the Chinese Table Tennis Association manages the largest professional table tennis league, China Table Tennis Super League (CTTSL).3536 Zhang Jike, currently the reigning Olympic and World champion, is sponsored by Coca-Cola (his image actually appears on the cans).  Domestically Jike is sponsored by Yanjing Beer Group (netting a $70,000 bonus for his Olympic win) and State Grid.37
In tennis, Li Na became the first Chinese national to win a grand slam tournament.  She won the 2011 French Open and subsequently signed 10 sponsorship deals including those with Hagen-Daz, Rolex and Nike as well as a three-year contract with Mercedes Benz and is on track to be the highest earning female athlete globally.38 And in swimming, Sun Yang broke an Olympic record in London last year and has signed 10 million RMB ($1.6 million) worth of sponsorship agreements including those with Yili Dairy, 361 Degrees (a sports manufacture) and Coca Cola.39 The 361 Degree deal was purportedly for 1 million RMB ($157,000).
Thus along with a social media strategy that I outline later in Chapter 12, if you or your company plans to sell goods and services to consumers on the mainland, it is important to look at potential sponsorship deals with popular athletes in leagues across the country.  And once again, if you do not, your competitors (both US and Chinese) could very well be looking to sign the next Yao Ming or Lin Dan.40
Professional know-how
What other services could you provide that are not available or are in scarce supply in China?
In his book Red Flags, Matt Garner notes that because Westerners – and specifically Americans – are exposed to the best advertising campaigns, the most concerted marketing efforts and the most methodical media plans, Westerners are by-and-large the most sophisticated and savvy consumers on the planet.
How can you use this to your advantage?
Colin Colenso is an Australian businessman who illustrates how Garner’s “saviness” can be put into practice.  He is the CEO of Human Action Media and with no qualifications or work experience in marketing, media or event managing, within 18 months of pursuing his dream to start a business in Shanghai running billiards events, Colenso’s small company – aided by two English speaking Chinese friends – managed the first nationally televised snooker event in China with a western multinational brand as sponsor.4142
In an October 2012 interview I had with Colenso, he noted that “this national snooker event was actually presented to me by the government officials as they hadn’t the marketing or public relations skills or resources to sell sponsorship packages to professional westernized companies in China.  Such gaps in skills and knowledge in sports and many other aspects of China are numerous, as services and products adapt to a growing and freer market.  This market phenomenon occurs everywhere, but the gaps in China’s rapid evolution to a market economy have been wider and deeper than in developed countries where such obvious opportunities had been snatched up long ago.”
So where does this leave a sport marketing expert in the developed world?  Is there a way you can translate your experience to the Chinese market?  Or is it too late?
I asked Colenso these same questions and he advised that while, “the development of sports business in China has been rapid, particularly in the last decade, so the gaps may be narrower and shallower for beginners.  Thus opportunities may not be obvious or easy to discover.  But in a market of dozens of cities with millions of residents whom have a growing desire and capacity to procure sports entertainment and products, I have no doubt Chinese sports will be grabbing headlines around the world in years to come, not just in athletic performances, but in business developments related to sports.  In fact, sports, as well as other markets are maturing to the point that they are more capable of providing opportunities for experienced professionals and companies from the West.  Snooker provides but one example of this, as China has become a key ally in World Snooker’s strategy for international expansion.  I’m sure the same is true for golf and various other sports, as the various organizations and companies involved have evolved.”43
And remember, just because you might not know who Lin Dan or Li Na are does not mean that Chinese consumers are equally unaware.  For perspective consider that the English Premier League generates almost the same revenue as the NBA ($3.5 billion versus $4.3 billion)44 yet it would be foolish to ignore the marketing potential of sponsoring teams like Manchester United or players like Wayne Roonie (the League’s highest paid player) just because you did not like the sport.  In fact, due in part to its large fan base on the mainland, Manchester United recently signed a 3-year sponsorship deal with China Construction Bank and Wahaha, the largest soft drink producer in China.45 Could your firm or clients find similar opportunities?
The Great Outdoors
As I discuss later in Chapter 11, according to the China Daily, in 2011 more than 60,000 Chinese children traveled to the US and participated in various summer programs.4647 While educational attainment is the primary motivation, another reason is that some middle class families have begun looking for outdoor activities for their children.  Why?  According to a recent survey, “Chinese kids under six spend less than an hour outdoors every day, only a quarter of the global average.”48 Thus in an effort to educate their children about nature, some are opting for day-trips to nature preserves and even summer camps.  In fact, according to a McKinsey & Company survey, “Chinese consumers who identify “retail-tainment” as a favourite pastime has fallen from more than half a few years ago to about 40 per cent now, and will be less than a third by 2020.”49
This kind of change in consumer behavior could provide an opportunity for both domestic and foreign companies to provide outdoor services and entertainment to children and adults.  For example, two years ago Club Med opened its first ski resort near Beijing.  During the summer it doubles as a golf course and theme park and was built to accommodate 18,000 customers a day.50 And according to one estimate from Justin Downes, a ski resort advisor, “there are about five million ski tourists in the country” – a number he estimates could reach 20 million by 2020 once new ski resorts are built.51  There are even ski resorts in relatively remote Urumqi, in the northwest province of Xinjiang.52 All told there are over 400 ski resorts nationwide and companies like Mountain China Resorts are investing several billion RMB to develop and build additional resorts and hotels to cater to a customer base which is now about 70% Chinese.53 Thus both foreign and domestic turf experts, course and resort designers, and even ski trainers may find a new revenue source.
Yet one area both foreigners and domestic firms and investors should be cautious of is golf courses.  While the ban on golfing was lifted in 1984, construction of new courses has been officially banned since 2004 (e.g., “it is an elitist game” and “uses scarce fertile land”); there has been a cat-and-mouse game of subsequent construction followed by investigations.  To get around this ban, new golf courses typically use other names like “health clubs” or “country clubs.”54 Those that are discovered (typically via satellite imagery) are sometimes dug up.  For example, several years ago the Anji King Valley country club (southwest of Shanghai) received a 10-day visit from bulldozers who subsequently redesigned the landscaping (tore up the turf and sprinkler system).55 Yet there are others that thrive and generate purportedly large sales; the Qinghe Bay club that opened in 2008 charges 880,000 RMB ($141,000) for lifetime membership.56
In fact, one estimate is that the Chinese golfing industry generated nearly $10 billion in revenue in 2008 (from course costs and equipment) and is expected to grow from 700 courses in 2012 to 2,700 in 2015.57 Even Mission Hills, the world’s biggest golf resort operator has opened several courses in the face of legal uncertainties.  Their largest course is the size of Manhattan and is located in Hainan province which is exempt from the ban.  Yet as I mentioned at the beginning: caveat venditor.  This boom may only be temporary.58
Six Minute Abs
As China both ages and develops (see Chapter 6 and 19) the demand for professional recreational facilities may also increase.  For example, water aerobics is generally considered a healthy, physically beneficial activity for elderly consumers in the West.  Yet aquatic facilities do not exist in China at the level as they do in some foreign countries.  And it is not due to a lack of popularity as anyone who has visited a public pool can attest; these facilities can become very crowded.59 Similarly, just as all other developing countries go through growing pains, one literal example that is increasingly relevant is physical stress.60 Or rather, many segments of the mainland do not feel they have enough time to both work hard at work and exercise afterwards.  In fact, according to the World Health Organization, the obesity rate for those 15 years or older in China reached 38.5% in 2010 (up from 25% in 2002) and another study by the General Administration of Sport (国家体育总局) found that “overweight rate among students between the age of 7-22 climbed to a new high.”6162 And as I mentioned in Chapter 6, in terms of overall numbers China is now the capital of diabetes, with 92.3 million or 9.7% of the population suffering from this affliction compared with 11% in the US.63
Part of the predicament leading to this rise in obesity is that quite simply, many students are encouraged and required to study more that in the past.  The increased competitiveness in obtaining academic placement (see Chapter 9) has led to many primary, secondary and even tertiary students to typically attend school from 7:30am to 5pm and then spend an additional 3-4 hours doing homework.  As a consequence they have little time to play or participate in physical activities.64 In fact, according to a recent Global Times report, “[i]n comparison with data collected in 2005, scores in men’s 1,000 meters fell by 3.37 and 3.09 seconds for urban and rural students, while breathing capacity of college students as a general dropped by nearly 10 percent from the 1985 level.”65 According to Qiao Xiaoshan a physical education researcher, “[f]rom 2002 to 2010 in China, more than 40 participants in long-distance running events aged 16 and over died suddenly.”66 In 2012 two more college students died from heart exhaustion after participating in a marathon in Guangdong and another student died in Shanghai while playing basketball.67 This has led to cancellations of running-based tests and competitions across many cities and provinces.  In fact according to Qiao, “more than 30 universities in Xi’an no longer held long-distance races because of the decline in students physical fitness, leading to concerns the students may suffer injury or even death if they took part in intense physical activity.”6869
In other cases, the consumer may not feel comfortable at existing facilities.  For example, in my own anecdotal experience at participating in gyms in China, one common concern I have heard by female patrons is that they would prefer to work out in their own women-only gym so they can receive train in a more supportive, focused environment.  Thus foreign, women-oriented firms such as Curves may find opportunities to cater to niche clientele.70 Similarly, specialty gyms like CrossFit may be able to capitalize on its status as a non-traditional, unconventional training program that could market itself towards the insatiable demand for wushu (e.g., Shaolin kung fu) which similarly involves training in creative ways and carrying, throwing, contorting and kicking unusual apparatus.71 However, all told, by one estimate, the penetration rate for fitness facilities is a mere 0.3% on the mainland compared with 16% in the US and 13% in the UK.72
For perspective, in 2011, there were 29,365 fitness-related businesses providing 43.6 million gym memberships in the US.73  Yet just because there is potential in one country does not mean there is instant success in another.  For instance, Bally’s Total Fitness has actually reduced its fitness centers in China from 44 in 2008 to less than 30 today.  And 24-Hour Fitness sold its centers to a local Chinese group (Ansa) in August 2012.  Why?  Because according to Walter MacDonald, a wellness management consultant, “[a]ll the ideas that work in the West mostly don’t work here.  Fitness is not like fast food chains that can easily change the menu according to local taste.”74  Similarly Theo Hendriks, the CEO of Sports and Leisure Group explains that “[t]he international clubs that have a difficult time in China are franchises, and they just have one concept for their gyms in different countries and cultures.”75
And again for those willing to stick with the mainland, the revenue potential could be rewarding.  According to Walter Macdonald, in terms of market size only $11 billion is spent on fitness in Asia compared to $21 to 25 billion in the US.76 For example, Hosa Fitness Clubs is one of the largest on the mainland with more than 500,000 members and plans to increase its centers “from the current 82 to 300 by the end of 2013.”77 Thus perhaps if foreign firms can figure out how to localize and cater fitness to specific consumer behavior (e.g., group based activities like tai chi, yoga, cycling) instead of the traditional Western model commonly tried they may be able emulate Hosa’s success.7879
In my conversation with Kirt Greenburg (see Chapter 1), he also noted that foreign firms should conduct research to specifically discover consumer behavior patterns regarding scheduling preferences at the gym.  For example, based on his cursory research he has found that many local gyms do not cater to consumers who prefer to work out in the morning, that gyms are typically only open beginning at 8:00 am.  According to him, “because the gym itself and formal fitness culture have not been established in most urban regions, customers and entrepreneurs are still adjusting and learning how to utilize and cater to peak hours.  The idea that you can take your work clothes to the gym, workout, shower and then head straight to work is still not fully embraced by urban workforces.”  Thus it may take some long-term planning and even education to cater to this new segment of time-conscious customers.
Takeaway: China’s sports base and sport development continue to create world-class athletes.  Professional leagues are beginning to mature and have attracted significant fan bases.  As a consequence, sponsorship and advertising revenues continue to climb both for sport franchises and athletes.  If you plan to sell your products and services in China you should also consider looking for potential athletes and sports – even those seemingly unpopular in the US such as badminton or table tennis – because if you do not take the opportunity to sign them, your competitors (both Chinese and American) very well might.

  1. China reaches for the big leagues from The National []
  2. NBA China Revenue to Increase at Least 10% Annually, Stern Says from Bloomberg []
  3. NBA, CCTV to boost basketball coverage in China from Variety []
  4. NBA, CCTV to expand partnership from China Daily []
  5. Yao Gives Reebok An Assist in China from The Wall Street Journal []
  6. O’Neal the real deal as Li-Ning goes global from People’s Daily []
  7. 2012 was a relatively difficult year financially and strategically for Li Ning and it may not exist in a year or two.  See A Year of Rebuilding for China’s Li Ning from The Wall Street Journal, Li Ning Torches Inventory from The Wall Street Journal, Li Ning tumbles on fundraising plan from Financial Times and Is the end nigh for Li-Ning? from The Li-Ning Tower []
  8. Chinese Shoe Deal Could Make Dwayne Wade The Richest Athlete of All Time from Celebrity Networth []
  9. Wade to sign with shoe brand Li-Ning from ESPN []
  10. I would be remiss if I did not mention a story Matt Garner originally told me.  Qiaodan is what they call Michael Jordan in China, but it was also a knock-off Air Jordan brand that Chinese consumers thought was actually American.  The reality is that the brand was registered as “Qiaodan,” not Jordan.  But most Chinese consumers cannot tell the difference.  It is like having a place in the US called “Hafo Business School” which has nothing to do with the real Harvard Business School yet most Chinese consumers do not know what they call Harvard in English.  See In China, Air cheow-DAN Cries Foul from The Wall Street Journal. []
  11. J.Crew to Open First Asian Store in Hong Kong from Bloomberg []
  12. See p. 204, Sports Around the World [4 Volumes]: History, Culture, and Practice by John Nauright and Charles Parrish and STATS Delivers the NBA to China’s Leading Web Portals from STATS []
  13. Pro basketball hits a wall in China from FORTUNE []
  14. It’s Official: NBA Star Tracy McGrady to Play in China from The Wall Street Journal []
  15. How Big is Tracy McGrady in China? from The Wall Street Journal []
  16. The two ‘followings’ are different.  Whereas KFC operates more stores on the mainland than anywhere else outside of the US, many basketball fans have enjoyed the rise of Jeremy Lin (born in Los Angeles to Taiwanese immigrants).  See Jeremy’s KFC Photo Shoot and More Photos From Volvo Shoot from Confessions of a Jeremy Lin Addict. []
  17. Another high-profile NBA import is Gilbert Arenas who currently plays for the Shanghai Sharks which is owned by Yao Ming.  See Zero Sum Game from Slam Online []
  18. NBA Washouts Have China Calling Foul from Bloomberg []
  19. Beyond Yao: The Future of Chinese Basketball from Knowledge@Wharton []
  20. Yao Ming’s Cure for What Ails Chinese Basketball from The Wall Street Journal []
  21. One Billion Fans, One Terrible Team from The New Republic []
  22. IMG Sees ‘Tremendous’ Sponsor Interest in Chinese Soccer from Bloomberg []
  23. See Beckham’s CSL ambassadorial role now confirmed from The Li-Ning Tower and Chinese Super League hoping Beckham can restore its battered image from South China Morning Post []
  24. See China bans former soccer chiefs for life, slaps heavy fines on clubs from Xinhua and Soccer in China from Facts and Details []
  25. Where are China’s Soccer Stars? from The New York Times []
  26. Asian Cup final smashes viewing records from the Asian Football Confederation []
  27. Chinese soccer clubs pay high salaries to foreign players from Want China Times []
  28. How world stole the brains behind Australian sport from The Daily Telegraph []
  29. How a swim school in Redcliffe is driving China’s Olympic gold rush from News Limited []
  30. Back in the swim from Financial Times []
  31. Skateboarding out of the shadows from China Daily []
  32. SMP Skate Park []
  33. Action Sports and Sport Participation in China from China Sports Review []
  34. The world’s 33rd most marketable athlete – Lin Dan from SportsPro []
  35. See China, Still the World Champ, Is Falling Out of Love With Table Tennis from The Atlantic and Ping Pong Diplomacy from []
  36. The late Zhuang Zhedong was one of the best known table tennis players on the mainland.  He was instrumental in ‘Ping Pong Diplomacy’ which presaged the normalization of relations between China and the US in the early 1970s. []
  37. See Zhang Jike: An Eligible Bachelor from Table Tennista and State Grid Welcome Visitors to the Brazil Junior and Cadet Open from ITTF []
  38. She was most recently the runner-up in the 2013 Australian Open.  See Li Na wins three-year Mercedes endorsement from SportsPro and Li Na on course to be world’s highest earning female athlete from The Li-Ning Tower []
  39. He was recently disciplined and his “commercial activities” (sponsorships) were put on hold.  See Sun Yang, advertising’s next big thing from and Sun Yang suspended from commercial activities from China Daily []
  40. Zou Shiming, gold-medal winner in Olympic boxing, is just one of many potential world-class athletes coming out of China.  See Zou Shiming’s professional example set to lead boxing revolution in China from Global Times []
  41. Human Action Media []
  42. Amway sponsors snooker from SportBusiness []
  43. World Snooker []
  44. Bumper revenues for Premier League clubs tempered by soaring wages from CNN []
  45. The wealthiest man in China is Zong Qinghou, founder of Wahaha which is the largest beverage producer in China.  See Man Utd signs up Chinese sponsors from Financial Times, Manchester United Signs Sponsorship Deal with Wahaha in China from Business Wire and China’s Richest Man Says Capital Markets ‘Suck’ from The Wall Street Journal []
  46. Chinese parents turn to US summer camps from China Daily []
  47. Some of these summer school programs may come under scrutiny due to relatively lax transfer credit requests.  See Chinese Summer Schools Sell Quick American Credits from The Chronicle of Higher Education []
  48. China discovers its inner tree-hugger from Financial Times []
  49. Ibid []
  50. Club Med looks to profit from China’s skiing craze from Agence France-Presse []
  51. Ibid []
  52. See Ski fields in Urumqi opens for business from Xinhua, Ice and Snow Festival kicks off in Xinjiang from Global Times and Urumqi attractions from China Daily []
  53. The ski’s the limit from China Daily []
  54. Golf course boom points to China corruption from Financial Times []
  55. The Forbidden Game from Slate []
  56. Golf course boom points to China corruption from Financial Times []
  57. See Golf defies rules to gain ground from China Daily and Mission Hills puts share float idea on table from South China Morning Post []
  58. Golf construction is booming in China, though it’s banned from Los Angeles Times []
  59. See Swimming: Chinese pools often too crowded to swim from Agence France-Presse and China’s Dead Sea Is World’s Most Packed Swimming Pool from The Daily Mail []
  60. This is a phenomenon that Matt Garner calls “stress stratification.”  In fact, due to time constraints Garner and others have predicted that many families will begin consuming pre-made food packages such as TV dinners like Hungryman.  This is further discussed in Chapter 3 (e.g., “frozen foods”). []
  61. Another estimate is much lower, 13.3% of urban Chinese male college students were classified as obese compared with 19.6% Americans in the same demographic group.  See China’s young in crisis of declining fitness from Associated Press []
  62. See Obesity in China: Waistlines are Expanding Twice as Fast as GDP from USC US-China Institute, Deaths in sports means more exercises needed from China Daily and What’s Making China Fat? from The Atlantic Cities []
  63. Another report from the International Diabetes Foundation puts the Chinese percentage slightly lower at 8.8% and in the US at 9.3%  See Prevalence of Diabetes among Men and Women in China from Yang et al. and China’s diabetes epidemic exacerbated by one-child policy from News Track India []
  64. Deaths in sports means more exercises needed from China Daily []
  65. Children’s tug of war between classroom, sports ground from Global Times []
  66. Races canceled as students struggle to stay in shape from China Daily []
  67. See Second death from Guangzhou marathon reported from Xinhu and Sudden death of college student raises attention from China Daily []
  68. See Races canceled as students struggle to stay in shape from China Daily and China’s young in crisis of declining fitness from Associated Press []
  69. Compounding this problem is air pollution (as noted later in Chapter 18).  According to John Balmes, a professor of medicine at UC San Francisco, due to the poor air conditions and relatively high levels of pollution in cities like Beijing, “it’s actually unhealthy for kids to be exercising outdoors. When you’re playing sports outside – or just being a kid and being very active – you get a high exposure to pollution because you’re breathing more per minute. Also, when you’re exercising, you breathe through your mouth instead of your nose, which has a filter.”  See Eye-Stinging Beijing Air Risks Lifelong Harm to Babies from Bloomberg []
  70. Compared to the rest of the industry, Curves has actually fallen on financial difficulties.  Thus competing firms that operate in this niche may be able to take this opportunity to expand overseas.  See In Search of More Muscle from The Wall Street Journal []
  71. The first official CrossFit gym on the mainland was recently opened in Shanghai.  See Iron Dragon: Crossfit []
  72. Down at the gyms from China Daily []
  73. Ibid []
  74. Ibid []
  75. Ibid []
  76. See Gym, Health & Fitness Clubs in the US: Market Research Report from IBISWorld, The Shape of the Fitness Industry from South Source and Industry Research from IHRSA []
  77. Down at the gyms from China Daily []
  78. For perspective consider that a year ago in 2011 Bally’s had large expansion plans for the mainland however those do not seem to be panning out.  Similarly, the fitness market has been another area that seems to have suffered from hype as back in 2002 it was reported that China’s sport and leisure market had 400 million consumers who spent $1.7 billion on sporting goods in 2000.  Thus, again while the potential remains, it may take many more years for any kind of critical mass or market penetration rates that are equivalent to the West, if ever.  See China’s Next Revolution Is in Fitness from The New York Times, Little Weight to China’s Gym Fad from Los Angeles Times and The New Sweatshops from TIME []
  79. An area of personal interest is the sport supplement and dietary supplement industry (which I did my graduate research on in the US).  While specific market research numbers are hard to come by, products from GNC are readily sold in CityShop (see Chapter 3) locations and some yogurt shops sell MuscleMilk.  And because of the prevalence of TCM (traditional Chinese medicine) and herbal supplements at every local pharmacy, perhaps foreign firms specializing in supplements could find a new market to generate revenue from if properly localized, branded and marketed. []