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Lost in translation? Facebook not entering China

Over the past days many Chinese websites wrote about the rumor that Facebook was planning to set up an office in China. This would be hard to believe, after all they have been blocked here for a long time already and they have some very strong and very profitable local competitors. Yesterday the story changed a bit, instead of an office Facebook now planned to set up a game development studio in China to make social games. Certainly an interesting idea, but it now turns out that this is likely not true either.

Tonight’s Marbridge Daily writes that the rumor was likely caused by a mistranslation. What happened? Watercooler, a San Francisco social game developer is setting up a game studio in Beijing, led by ex-NBA China digital media director Andy Lee. For this the company posted an ad saying that they are looking for developers “for social games for Facebook”. Not sure if the ad was in English or Chinese, but a local game industry portal picked up the news and either mistranslated or misunderstood the ad, concluding that Facebook was hiring local staff in China. And of course that exciting news spread very quickly over the Chinese Internet!

Andy, whether the Marbridge article is a rumor itself or not, you did a great job in creating awareness among developers for your new company!

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