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September 19, 2012



I called my father-in-law and found his ringtone had been replaced - by his phone company - with a "Defend the Diaoyu Islands! The Diaoyu Islands belong to China!" message.

Holy shit. Really?

If so, I give it five years before that comes to the UK. You can pay a bit extra to keep your own ringtone. If not, prepare to find your phone suddenly started to say "Tesco! Every little helps!" in a wee squeaky voice.


Just to clarify, I'm pretty certain this just played for the *caller,* rather than being the tone that sounded from the phone.


That's a ringback tone, not a ringtone, and it's a network service rather than a handset feature.

It does have a nasty, war-fever, mobilisation plan sound to it. Do you think it was part of a plan, or the operator freelancing/working towards the leader?


I doubt it was planned; probably just China Mobile or Unicom (the two big providers) going with the swing of things.


You can set your own ringback tone in China (thanks for the term), but otherwise it defaults to the service provider. Haven't noticed it on Beijing calls; this was Hunan.


CM is a pretty regionalised company - contracts with NSN, Ericsson, etc are usually issued by CM-Wherever rather than head office, and the IP address ranges are permanently broken out by province. So perhaps someone in CM-Hunan is a nutter.


Ah, OK. That's slightly less disturbing. Still not great though.

Barry Freed

I called my father-in-law

I seem to have missed the point at which Ms Blood became Mrs Blood. If so, then: Congratulations!


Hah, not yet, technically. I just call him "Ba" anyway.


I know being surprised by the priorities of the media is like being shocked by the state of the British weather but it's nonetheless dispiriting how much more attention the Duchess of Cambridge's sunbathing has acquired than this intriguing business.

john b

Ben: I'm rather spirited by it, to be honest.

The whole thing is meaningless swordwaving, culminating in the absolutely bonkers piece in the Torygraph this morning about China declaring Bond War on Japan (despite owning 2% of Japan's sovereign debt), with no more real world impact than any other pointless ritual denunciation to appease domestic patriotic stupidity.

Frankly, I'd rather the masses were getting excised by the inappropriate display of Sloaney tits, which at least has no impact whatsoever on real life, than wound up about "NEW WWIII" scaremongering which might affect their views on Abroad & Foreign Policy Choices.


Fair point. I'd momentarily forgotten that all international events are either completely trivial or harbingers of the apocalypse...

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