I recently read a news post on bloomberg.com. I was disappointed about their wording. The reporter was just exaggerating. It was not accurate judging from my experience.
“In China, getting a ticket home for the Lunar New Year can feel a bit like winning the lottery. ” This was the lead. It was never that difficult. Media coverage is all about those poor guys who didn’t get their tickets but it doesn’t necessarily mean that the majority of people don’t get their tickets. The mean world syndrome is kicking in in this situation. A few extremes don’t give you the broad picture.
This news post included the data which can be frightening in a way. “More than 2.9 billion passenger trips, including 332 million on the country’s rail networks, are expected by China’s Ministry of Transportation to be made over the New Year period.” This is like every Chinese would travel twice in the new year holiday.
This was a rather long news post. Apart from the “winning the lottery” wording was disappointing. The remaining part was pretty awesome. Even as a Chinese, I am learning something new from it. I want to point out that the header image is very good which add a lot humanity and newsworthiness to the story. The caption for the photo is “a couple says goodbye before leaving to visit respective families for the Spring Festival in Beijing.”
People order tickets on an website 12306.cn. Before you start ordering, you need to pass a pop quiz to prove that you are not a Web robot. “The puzzles are part of new cybersecurity measures designed to thwart scalpers from snapping up seats to resell at inflated prices. ” It is understandable but the questions are not reasonable. I heard complaint about that. People made jokes out of it.
I want to show you a few examples here.
It asks you to choose all the pictures that are Christmas trees out of these eight. You are just lucky if you get this question. The second example here is just absurd.
This asks you which are the photo of Baihe Bai, an actress. You need to distinguish her from another actress Luodan Wang. These two actresses look really alike. You can imagine how hard it is when you are rushing and anxious and the pictures are just small.
*Luodan Wang on the left. Baihe Bai on the right. Believe me, it is really difficult for me.
P.S. Another thing I hold suspicious view is that I think bloomberg.com changed the headline of this news post. As I remembered and it shows in the URL. The headline was “Chinese new year when buying a train ticket feels like winning the lottery”. Maybe they also thought it is exaggerating so they changed it. I am not sure but I think I need to point out.