Mark Tanner - Adventurer, Writer and Amateur Beatboxer

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The first ever people to paddle from the source of the Blue Nile to the Mediterranean Sea

Paddling the Nile

The first ever paddle down the Blue Nile from source to sea. 5,000km through wild rapids, war zones, crocodile and hippo infested waters, disease, terrorists, guns, arrests; the works...

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Living the dream in China

Chinese Adventures

Newly married amongst the neon glow and dumpling vendors as we bumble our way trying to figure out the world's most populous nation at this exciting time in it's history...

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Solo winter bicycle trek across Canada

The Great Canadian Bike Trek

23 years old and naive, I set off in the middle of Canada's barbaric winter perched on a woolskin seat-cover peddling solo from one side of Canada to the other...

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Welcome to MarkTanner.com where you'll read about the first ever paddle from the source of the Blue Nile to the sea, an ancient Viking treasure hunt, midwinter biking across Canada and Chinese adventures. There's tasty Sudanese recipes, a Chinese Haka Video, beatbox downloads, Nile Floods, rat trapping, a Nile River trivia quiz, photos of Wellington and lots more. Enjoy!

 



The Sphinx: Didn’t the Egyptians think to Trademark it in China?

June 2, 2014 | Comments No Comments

 

China's fake Great Sphinx of Giza, in Hebei province, close to Beijing

China’s fake Great Sphinx of Giza, in Hebei province, close to Beijing

 

China has been investing large sums into Africa to take advantage of the continent’s vast natural resources and build diplomacy. In 2012 alone, China dropped $27.7 billion between Cairo and Capetown and is showing no signs of slowing down. But even with China bringing all sorts of new infrastructure, mobile networks, sports stadiums and more productive farming to the continent, one country that isn’t looking too fondly on the Middle Kingdom is Egypt.

 

Egypt’s tourism industry, which accounts for 40% of the country’s non-commodity exports and is one its main employers, stands to benefit significantly from the rise of Chinese outbound tourism.  With 200 million Chinese expected to travel abroad in 2017, once Egypt settles a little, big-spending Chinese tourists will come flooding in.  So it is in Egypt’s best interests to keep China on side, but a couple of recent incidents by Chinese nationals will certainly be testing their patience.

 

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Elysium, China and the Electric Car Question

February 16, 2014 | Comments No Comments

 

China Elysium

China Elysium

 

On the long flight back from China to New Zealand recently, one of the films I watched was Elysium.  The sci-fi thriller probably won’t make my top-10 list, but some of the content felt disturbingly close to home.

 

Although earth in Elysium was depicted as a polluted and overpopulated Los Angeles in 2154, it had elements of the way China is going right now, as the air and water pollution seem to be getting worse every year.  The luxurious space habitat that the earthlings wanted to escape to, reminded me a little bit of New Zealand – although with slightly better looking inhabitants and a far superior health system.

 

A recent McKinsey poll in China, found air and water pollution to be Chinese consumers’ fastest growing concerns – 11% and 7% up on last year – and the forth and fifth biggest concerns overall.  Interestingly, the concerns were confirmed by a recent report by the Shanghai Academy of Social Sciences, claiming that Beijing was almost uninhabitable for human beings due to the pollution. Whether or not these claims are ‘exaggerated‘, as reported by Chinese state media, the pollution appears to be getting even worse, not better, based on both official reports and my personal experiences, particularly in Shanghai.

 

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The Internet In China: Going The Full Circle

October 13, 2013 | Comments No Comments

 

Chinese Internet Prison

The Internet in China is changing for the worse

 

One of the most fascinating things about living in China over the past few years has been observing how the Internet is changing everything from shopping, to communication, to the way Chinese people think.

 

For generations, Chinese were heavily influenced by what the Government said in their state-controlled media, determining what is shown on television, the newspapers, radio, books and almost everything in China. It was an incredibly powerful channel to spread the propaganda, and in a way, helped control what 1.3 billion Chinese thought and felt, contributing to much of China’s swift rise into the economic powerhouse it is today.

 

A few years ago, things started to change. Soaring Internet and social media connections reached critical mass. Whereas the Government controlled virtually all of the country’s mass-communication channels before, the Internet finally gave the average Zhou a voice, and they took full advantage of it.

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157 Cities in China with more people than Berlin, 110 with more than Sydney

August 6, 2013 | Comments No Comments

 

Most people have heard of Shanghai and Beijing, but I bet there’d be very few Westerners who could name 50% of the 113 cities with more people than San Francisco’s metro area. Every month in China, there is a city the size of Brisbane added to the landscape. On the Yangtze River alone, 18 cities have more people than New Zealand.

 

What’s remarkable, is the number of China’s mega-cities that most people have never heard of.  Consumers in those cities are becoming increasingly wealthy, and their tastes are going to increasingly influence the whole world.  To bring some perspective to the scale of China’s cities, my marketing and research agency, China Skinny, has created a simple tool, The City-Nator, where you can enter your city, or a population over 1 million and see how many Chinese cities have more people.  It’s quite fun, try it out at chinaskinny.com/tools/city-nator.

 

Below is a little infograph to warm up…

The rise of China's cities means are going to influence everyone, everywhere

The rise of China’s cities means are going to influence everyone, everywhere


 
See how your city compares to Chinese cities, try out the City-Nator


 

 

 

 


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