Mar 03

China Watch Blog greets all Baha’is around the world with “Happy Fasting”, the fast which started on March 2 will be till March 20 – for a total of 19 days, which is one calendar month of the Baha’i calendar.

Fasting, which is from sunrise till sunset, means Baha’i have to totally abstain from food and drink, and during the fasting period, they are encouraged to pray (talk to God) and to meditate (listen to what God is saying to you).

During the fast, Baha’is have to control all negative emotions like not getting angry, raising their voices, and anything considered not pleasing to others – not something which is easy to do, but to put it this way, it is a good time to practise these virtues.

So, following the fasting month, God willing and hopefully, the indiviudal Baha’is remember to practise it throughout the whole year. So the next year’s fasting month, is somewhat like a refresher course, for practising these virtues.

Again, happy fasting to those Baha’is who are observing the fast.

Following the fasting month, the Baha’is will celebrate their new year called Nawruz, which starts after sunset on March 20 till March 21 evening. So Happy Nawruz to the friends who will celebrate Nawruz.

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Mar 03

China Watch Blog has learnt that the computer game Angry Birds is hitting the shops in China, and not just the virtual ones.

Rovio Entertainment Ltd, maker of the world-sensation, plans to open as many as 600 retail stores in China in the coming two years or so. The first batch of stores –– according to Rovio’s chief marketing officer and co-founder Peter Vesterbacka –– will be opened in Beijing and Shanghai before this summer.

The Finnish digital-game developer hopes the stores in China can generate more than $100 million in revenue this year.

China is the second-fastest-growing market after the United States, according to the company. The apps of the Angry Birds series games had been downloaded more than 100 million times in the country by mid-February.

The soon-to-be-open stores will sell Angry Birds’ derivative products such as stuffed toys, T-shirts and chocolates, according to the company.

Earlier this month, Rovio opened its official online stores on Tmall.com, the nation’s largest business-to-customer platform, selling similar products.

Rovio expects the retail stores will retake market share that was purloined by pirated products.

“We have some issues with piracy, not only in apps, but also especially in consumer products,” said Mikael Hed, chief executive officer of the company. “There are tons and tons of merchandise out there, especially in Asia, which are not officially licensed products.”

Rovio’s first official retail store was opened on Nov 11, 2011, in Helsinki, the capital city of Finland.

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