Here at VietChannel, we do not like to stir politics into entertainment…but because this has been a pretty hot topic lately, maybe you all would like to know, too.

Basically, the whole sha-bang started a few weeks ago when National Geographic Society released a world map that showed the disputed Truong Sa (Paracel) archipelago in the East Sea as part of China. The map labeled the Paracels with its Chinese name and annotates in red, “China.”


Since we all know how strongly the Vietnamese public feel about protecting “Hoang Sa & Truong Sa”, such errors would obviously not be tolerated despite NGS releasing a press release stating that their maps are apolitical & have  no legal value.

After the Viet group Nguyen Thai Hoc Foundation protested it and started an online petition on March 11 which was signed by more than 8100 people worldwide in a matter of just days, National Geographic Society announced Wednesday that it would correct this mistake.

To add fuel in fire, Google, only a few days later, committed nearly the same mistake. In a newly released world map, the border runs through Lao Cai town, showing half of Lao Cai Province as being in China as well as relocating Ban Gioc waterfall to Chinese territory. People were clearly not happy since thousands of square kilometers of Vietnamese territory were involved. In result, more complaints were filed causing Google to clarify that this was just a minor error.

However, the fishy stench actually lies within the little time lapse in which both controversial incidents occurred. Coincidence?….Thoughts?