Reading SCMP for free, on the iPad

The South China Morning Post is one of the best reads in English on East Asian news. Based in Hong Kong, it is a full-blown operation with reporters all over China. Its content is, however, trapped behind a paywall on its own website. Strangely, the iPad app “SCMP” has what I’m pretty sure is the whole paper for free.

Here are some things I learned this morning (amidst tweeting on the reported release of Ai Weiwei).

  • Analysts think the price of rice will rise after huge floods in South China this month.
  • News of a cover-up at the Ministry of Railways in China emerged when a former engineer Zhou Yimin told a newspaper that large problems in the safety of high-speed trains had been classified as small problems. This comes along with the news that new trains would be running below their designed speed. Zhou said the Beijing–Shanghai train, slated for 350 km/h, should run no faster than 300 kn/h.
  • Chinese officials are speaking with the Libyan “rebel” diplomatic chief Mahmoud Jibril in Beijing. The Chinese government, which had worked with Gaddafi, seems to be in a tough spot, having met the Gadaffi foreign minister this month.
  • “China-Vietnam Naval Exercises Ease Tensions.” Ships from the two countries patrolled the Gulf of Tonkin for two days, side-by-side. This was the 11th such joint activity since 2005, and SCMP reports its unclear how long it had planned. Recent tensions over the status of the South China Sea have raised concerns that Vietnam and China could enter conflict.
  • Chinese analysts divided on how much strength to show in the South China Sea disputes with Vietnam and Philippines.
  • North Korea has stocked up on riot gear to head off any potential unrest, according to AFP.

That’s not necessarily the most exciting list of things for just anyone, but for me, access to these things is great. The trouble is there’s no e-mail feature, no copy and paste, and no Twitter in this app. Are they intentionally making it harder to enjoy their content?





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