Tuesday, November 13, 2018

Sci-fi website in New York TOR.COM refuses to allow Taiwanese sci-fi fans to register at site as citizens of Taiwan and forces them to join as citizens of communist China: Orwellian nonsense?

Yes, a top Sci-fi website in New York TOR.COM/register refuses to allow Taiwanese sci-fi fans and sci-fi readers to register at site as citizens of Taiwan and forces them to join as citizens of communist China: Orwellian nonsense?
See the drop down menu above and see if you can find a country called Taiwan on the menu. No. Only China is there and Taiwanese sci-fi fans must sign in as being nationals of Communist China when Tor editors know very well that Taiwanese are not citizens of Communist China. Yet Tor refuses to change the drop down menu.

There's more: A Taiwanese e-sports team was  recently denied entry to a competition next year after the German body overseeing it argued that Taiwan does not exist on any UN list of countries or regions
Although a declaration of independence would probably not see Taiwanese sovereignty recognized in the short term, it would legally protect the nation from annexation and afford it international recognition, while putting it on the path toward sovereignty in the long term. It would also protect the democratic rights and the will of the nation’s 23.5 million people.
While there is no set definition for what constitutes sovereignty, legal experts around the world largely agree on a few key requirements and generally concur that UN recognition is the standard for a successful determination of the requirements.
A BBC article on Oct. 10 last year delineated four components that comprise a state: a people, a territory, a government and the ability to conduct relations with other states on a sovereign basis.
The definition of “a people” is disputed, the article said, but added that some argue it means a permanent population with a concept of and belief in their own nationality.
Despite having these components, Taiwan remains in limbo — neither under the control of another nation nor recognized as sovereign. This is largely due to international laws being somewhat contradictory. They call for the protection of self-determination, as outlined in the UN Charter and clarified in the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, but disallow the fragmentation of existing sovereign states.
An article on theconversation.com says that these laws were mostly written during the period of decolonization, while self-determination in today’s world is typically done by working within the confines of a pre-existing state, such as the establishment of autonomous areas.
Areas claimed by the Republic of China are recognized by the UN as part of the sovereign territory of the People’s Republic of China, whose sovereignty is protected by the 1971 UN General Assembly Resolution 2758.
Then-UN secretary-general Ban Ki-moon in 2007 cited this resolution when he rejected then-president Chen Shui-bian’s (陳水扁) bid for full UN membership for Taiwan.
Three of the world’s newest countries — East Timor, South Sudan and Eritrea — gained sovereignty because the nations from which they separated relinquished territory as part of internationally negotiated peace agreements.
For Taiwan, such a possibility simply does not exist in the short term. The relinquishment of claims over Taiwan by Beijing would give impetus to independence movements in Hong Kong, Tibet and Xinjiang, which would seriously weaken the Chinese Communist Party.
However, even without recognized sovereignty, there is value in declaring independence, as Kosovo’s independence from Serbia in 2008 showed. Although Kosovo is still claimed by Serbia, its independence is recognized by more than half of the UN member states and its de facto statehood also means that Serbia cannot use force to reclaim it.
Citing Oxford University professor of public international law Stefan Talmon, an article on the Web site of Foreign Policy magazine says that the UN Charter prohibits the use of force against an established state as part of Cold War-era rules that protect new states not yet recognized by some governments.

So what say you, TOR? 

You are a top Sci-fi website in New York TOR.COM/register and you still refuse to allow Taiwanese sci-fi fans and sci-fi readers to register at site as citizens of Taiwan and forces them to join as citizens of communist China: Orwellian nonsense?
See the drop down menu above and see if you can find a country called Taiwan on the menu. No. Only China is there and Taiwanese sci-fi fans must sign in as being nationals of Communist China when Tor editors know very well that Taiwanese are not citizens of Communist China. Yet Tor refuses to change the drop down menu.

AND:

DEAR EDITOR, THE TAIPEI TIMES
As readers who follow the news know,  China has sent a threatening letter to a large number of international airlines demanding that they change the country code for Taiwan (TW) on their schedules to China (CN), as dictated by Beijing’s “one China” principle.
However, standing up for Taiwan’s international space and presence, on May 5 US President Donald Trump’s administration issued a statement condemning China’s science fictional “demand” as “Orwellian nonsense” through which China was trying to impose its own political claims on private companies around the world.
It’s like the British novels Nighteen Eighty-four and Animal Farm have come to life in 2018.
Believe it or not, a major sci-fi publishing company in New York, the most prestigious science fiction publisher in the world, Tor Books, whose editors know all about the Nighteen Eighty-four and Animal Farm, also kowtows to Beijing’s “one China” nonsense by asking Taiwanese sci-fi fans who want to sign up at the Tor Web site (tor.com/register) to list their country on the site’s drop-down menu as either “China” or “Taiwan, province of China.”
Yes, the world-famous sci-fi Web site run by Tor Books does not allow Taiwanese sci-fi fans to list their country as “Taiwan.”
Yet as readers know, Taiwan is a free and independent democracy, which abides by international law and has never been a part of the People’s Republic of China (PRC). The Chinese claim that Taiwan is part of the PRC is a silly nationalistic sci-fi illusion, with no basis in international law.
By forcing Taiwanese sci-fi fans to register on the Web site as being from either “China” or “Taiwan, province of China,” Tor’s editors and Web site managers are showing a terrible and naive bias to Taiwanese fans.
Tor’s editors are probably not even aware of this oversight on their registration form, thus this letter, and hopefully a change in the Web site’s current Orwellian nonsense.
I hope that Tor Books, once its editors read this letter, will do the right thing and stand up for Taiwan on its online registration form and show science fiction fans around the world that US sci-fi Web sites do not kowtow to China.
Name withheld
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