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Monday, May 05, 2008

The Voice of Kyiv’s Legalize Movement

On May 3, pro-marijuana libertarians in Kyiv waved cannabis-themed banners to the tune of Bob Marley tracks, posing as a red cloth for right-wing Svoboda activists who strongly oppose the move.

With both parties cordoned off by police, the Global Marijuana March went without much incident. It was not immediately clear whether Mayor Chernovetsky attended the event.

Taras Ratushny, press attache for the Freedom March: We demand that parliamentary hearings be held on the issue of government policy regarding alcohol, tobacco and soft drugs. Such hearings are necessary to finally, in the 17th year of independence, hammer out government policy on this issue. How should we treat those who smoke tobacco? How should we treat those who use drugs? Should we put them to death or should we, instead, cure them? Who should be punished — drug dealers or drug users? What is more beneficial for the government, more economical and safe for public health, primarily?

No, that’s not me.

Video uploaded from:


Anonymous said...

He should use this video to prop up their cause:

Anonymous said...

Timeline for the story which turned out to be a hoax about Hitler dolls for sale in Ukraine.


Taras said...

Thank you, Leopolis!

It’s a blockbuster video! I’ve already seen it a couple of times. Many Kyivites have seen scenes like this with their own eyes.

Thank you, Luida!

I like this summary a little more. It mentions my humble effort:)!

After all, I think I was the first English-speaking blogger to debunk the story, as early as April 23, albeit initially unaware of its media proportions.

Unfortunately, I failed to retrieve the original Dzerkalo Tyzhnia report that same day. (I hadn’t read DT in a while, plus their search engine truly sux. Hell, I even translated кукла as toy instead of doll, and misspelled the reporter’s name, writing Katchenko instead of Kadchenko.)

Anyway, I had a gut feeling that Kadchenko had either presented an overblown account or a total fake. I could feel Ukraine being played like a toy. And the DT report, kindly contributed my one of my commenters, would prove that.

Thanks to my dear readers, the story had received links from Global Voices and forUm by the end of April 23. Without your rapid response, fewer people would have read Ukraine’s side of the story.

And btw, the BBC visited yesterday:)

Anonymous said...

Story about tainted sunoil might also be a hoax.

"If the incident really took place, the Ministry should inform us about it”, he noted. At the same time, R.Shmidt pointed out that, according to his information, “the sunoil was delivered to France by a European company, it was not bottled Ukraine, and, moreover, it was not supplied for retail trade by Ukraine”."

I am really surprised at Dzerkalo Tyzhnia, but it could be due to the site receiving submissions and then okaying them, do they even have their own reporters? In such a scenario, oversight and management is crucial. Has there been any explanation publ. by DT? or UNIAN? or Glavred who owns UNIAN? and who is Andri Kapustin?

Though I do remember a false story planted in english on the Ukrinform site during the Orange Revolution. Employees in certain locations have alot of power and authority and quality control seems to be lacking. And hv u ever noticed that some of the most interesting news items sometimes are released in the wee hours on the UNIAN ukr/ru lang sites? Has it never caused anyone anxiety that not all news items get translated into eng? which is also true for Forum? and that ukrinform which should be the premier site for news from Ukraine has such "odd" translations into eng? plus the fact that their news items are in-acessible which makes their newsworthiness mute unless looked at on the govt website? and I still want to understand why both 5 kanal and Ukrayinska Pravda no longer have eng. lang translations of their articles?

And lots of stories are passed around that present lopsided view - true but they could be called "spin", like the following. No mention of the box offices having been closed due to decision on the part of cinema owners, nor that certain production companies refused to subtitle or dub movies which would have made up sales, like "I am Legend". Nor does it explain that films can be shown in the original lang. with UA subtitles and need not be dubbed which is more expensive (though it does "hint" at such) nor does it state that dubbed movies into Ukrainian have made more money than those dubbed into russian, when shown in Ukraine. Though what it says is true, really do question how a 3% decline could translate into cinemas being closed. That is a decline but is it really enough to force closures?


Taras said...

Touché, Luida!

It goes to show that Ukraine speaks little English in the global news market. Countries that speak little English let tons of crap speak for them without even knowing it.

In Ukraine’s news industry, English plays a Cinderella role. The same can often be witnessed in corporate Ukraine in general.

I read my first Zerkalo Nedeli issue back in 1995. Dzerkalo Tyzhnia, the Ukrainian edition, became available years later. DT does not operate as a news service. It’s a Ukrainian/Russian-language newspaper with a Web site that occasionally translates articles into English.

As for full-time news services, they probably consider it unprofitable to hire professional translators. In fact, translators would be a misnomer. The job requires English-speaking journalists, or at least qualified people with near-native English and strong knowledge of Ukraine. If you assign the task to people who struggle with translating Ukrainian texts into English, you will only get those “odd” translations. And as long as the readers don’t complain, the organization will assume it’s fine.

Contrary to what many Ukrainian news agencies and companies believe, the near-native capability does not come from a crash course. For non-native speakers of English, it takes years of well-rounded education and hard work.

Until the job undergoes proper analysis and evaluation, Ukraine will be stuck with “we have what we have,” as Kravchuk put it.

The box office article, written by a Russian journalist, quotes sources that boycotted the move. It does not provide an alternative point of view, nor does it provide alternative statistics.

Finally, how has the movie theater industry fared in the Baltics, given their much higher proportion of Russian speakers?

Anonymous said...

"It goes to show that Ukraine speaks little English in the global news market. Countries that speak little English let tons of crap speak for them without even knowing it."

You said a mouthfull !

btw is is possible to donate books to the American Library in Kyiv? would they even accept them? Would not want to send books and then have them discarded and not made avail. to readers? such as "Young Stalin" by Montefiore or "Dawn Dusk or Night: A Year with Nicolas Sarkozy" by Yasmina Reza and many more. Keep in touch and let me know. Thanks.


Anonymous said...

"It’s a blockbuster video! I’ve already seen it a couple of times. Many Kyivites have seen scenes like this with their own eyes."

First off
women cannot tolerate alcohol as well as men - this is a fact in a world where hard alcohol is drunk like water, it is a deciding factor AND esp. when their own body weight is so much less and they may not even have eaten beforehand to line their stomachs (see "How to Drink Someone Under the Table" from the 'Action Heroine's Handbook by Worick and Borgenicht p. 29)

The good news is that they had friend/s to watch out for them and were not being "date-raped" by anyone or otherwise abused or taken advantage of.

Drink responsibly and just raise the price of booze for effin sakes!