Ping Fu Controversy IV – Timeline (updated 3/19/2013)

A Wikipedia user Parisapril created this timeline originally. Apparently it scared the Ping Fu and Co. so much that they have their wikipedia friends deleted the page soon after its creation. I salvaged most of the content from Google cache after its deletion by wiki and added progressing events since then. Will try to keep this up to date. All Dates are PST.

December 31, 2012, Penguin Portfolio published Ping Fu – memoir Bend, Not Break.

Jan. 22, 2013, Tina Brown went on NPR to recommend “Bend, Not Break”.[1]

Jan. 22, 2013, The book received its first one-star review on amazon.com from reader “lin”.[2]. The review has since been truncated by Amazon due to length limit. Original review can be found in this doc I don’t believe her story

Jan. 23, 2013, Forbes published its interview with Ping Fu on-line. Under the title “One Woman’s Journey from Chinese Labor Camp to Top American Tech Entrepreneur” [3]

Jan. 25, 2013, Forbes article was translated into Chinese and published on Forbes China website. [4]

Jan. 29, 2013, Fang Zhouzi published his first installment of questions against Ping Fu’s memoir on his Chinese microblog.[5] Fang simply pointed out the inconsistency and unlikelihood of many major events to actually happen. He didn’t ask anyone other than Ping Fu herself to do anything.
Within 24 hours after Fang Zhou Zi’s post, over fifty ethnic Chinese spontaneously came to amazon.com and provided one-star reviews. The book’s rating went from 4.5 out of 5 stars to 2 out of 5 stars during that period of time.

Jan. 28, 2013, Ping Fu explained on her twitter account that “the Forbes article has some inaccuracies, media does not let me review before…“. [6]

Jan. 30, 2013, John Kennedy published first English Translation of Fang Zhouzi’s blog on Ping Fu on South China Morning Post: “‘Liar-hunter’ Fang Zhouzi accuses Ping Fu of selling fake tragedy to Americans”

Jan. 31, 2013, Forbes changed the title of its Jan 23rd article to “One Woman’s Journey from China’s Cultural Revolution to Top American Tech Entrepreneur”, and also published a follow up “‘Bend, Not Break’ Author Ping Fu Responds To Backlash“[7]
Forbes article unveiled more questions than it attempted to answer. More one-star reviews kept coming, the book’s rating continued to plumet on amazon.com.

Jan. 31, 2013, Daily Kos member xgz published his first installment of a series of blog posts on Ping Fu’s Memoir: “Bend, Not Break: A Lie in Two Worlds“.

Feb. 1, 2013, Professor Erica Brindley started a discussion thread on Amazon book review page of ‘Bend, Not Break’, with the title “Do not bomb this book if you have not read it! I am a professor of Chinese history and philosophy (PhD from Princeton) and I vouch that her story is a true reflection of what happened to some people in China during the Cultural Revolution.“[8], calling the reviewers “Chinese Nationalists”. She was soon found out by information on-line that she is the sister-in-law of Meimei Fox, ‘Bend, Not Break’ co-author, and her specialty in Chinese history was limited to “early China (500 BC to 200 AD)“[9], far removed from Cultural Revolution time period.

Feb. 1, 2013, Fu published two blog posts on huffingtonpost.com: “Sad, But Not Broken“[10] and “Clarifying the Facts in Bend, Not Break“[11]. She called the negative reviews “the smear campaign…dark side of China.”

Feb. 2, 2013, “Bend, Not Break” made it to #24 for Hardcover-Nonfiction category and #32 for Combined Print and E-book category of Feb. 10, 2013 New York Times “extended” Best Seller list, which reflected sales ending Jan. 26, 2013[12]. “Bend, Not Break” didn’t make it to the next issue (Feb. 17, 2013) New York Times Best Seller list, which reflected sales ending Feb. 2, 2013.

Feb. 4, 2013, The Guardian Beijing & New York published “Chinese cast doubt over executive’s rags to riches tale“. [13]

Feb. 4, 2013, Tina Brown’s Dailybeast.com published “Ping Fu Defends ‘Bend, Not Break’ Memoir Against Online Chinese Attack” to defend Ping Fu. [14]

Feb. 5, 2013, UK Telegraph published “Doubts over Chinese author lauded by Michelle Obama“. [15]

Feb. 8, 2013 – An new Amazon user Van Harris joined Amazon.com’s book review discussion, started threatening amazon book reviewers with lawsuits.[16]Among the many discussion threads he started, “Could you really be sued?” [17] and “Is this legal?“[18] are among the earlier ones. After Van Harris googled one reviewer Zhaomin Yang[19], VH emailed Yang directly threatening to get Yang fired or his employer in trouble with its 3D suppliers.[20].

Feb. 11, 2013, Sir Harold Evans published “The Persecution of Ping Fu“. [21].

Feb. 13, 2013, The Guardian followed up with another article with more in-depth investigation on Ping Fu’s story. “Ping Fu’s childhood tales of China’s cultural revolution spark controversy“. [22]. In the Guardian article Ping Fu admitted “she had been wrong to call the criticism a smear campaign, adding she had realised the people she thought were attacking her were telling their own stories of the cultural revolution.”

Feb. 13, 2013, Agence France-Presse(AFP) published China bloggers vilify US executive’s memoirs.

Feb. 14, 2013, Influential short-seller Citron Research published report warning bubble in 3D printers. Identified Ping Fu as 3D printing industry’s spokesperson and linked to Sir Evans’ article. [23] DDD stock started sliding at the rate of 5%/day[24]

Feb. 15, 2013, Ping Fu appeared on a Book promotion interview @CNBC “On the Money with Maria Bartiromo“, “Communist Factory Worker turned Capitalist Queen – The incredible story of Ping Fu, the entrepreneur who overcame a childhood in labor camps of China’s cultural revolution to running an award-winning 3-D technology company.” Ping Fu repeated many of the statements she has retracted in her own Huffington Post “Clarification”, “Forbes”, and “Guardian”. e.g. “Labor Camp”.

Feb. 16, 2013, Original location of this page on wikipedia was deleted citing “personal information of a wikipedia editor” was exposed.

Feb. 16, 2013, #1 review on Amazon, also the first 1-star review on the book by lin was deleted by Amazon, citing “Visual Distractiveness”.

Feb. 18, 2013, lin posted a new review, Amazon preserved the initial publication time “Jan. 22, 2013”, but removed the 1400+ helpful vote and 70+ pages of comments. Within 6 hours this new review was voted back to the top, “most helpful in 5 star category” and also among the “most helpful review overall”, trading place with now 3 weeks older earlier 1-star reviews by reviewer “Henry” and ‘Chris”.

Feb. 19, 2013, Fidelity stepped in and placed a 1 million shares order to buy DDD, thus stablized the decline of DDD from previous diving trend.

Feb. 19, 2013, for a brief period of time, lin’s original 1-star review was back, both her 1-star and 5-star reviews were alive side by side during this period of time.

Feb. 19, 2013, China Daily published “Fabrications fail as world flattens” by Berlin Fang.

Feb. 20, 2013, International Herald Tribune (Global Edition of New York Times) and New York Times published two articles by the same reporter DIDI KIRSTEN TATLOW covering this controversy:
– New York Times: US Edition: Letter From China: Ensnared in the Trap of Memory.
– International Herald Tribune – Global Edition of NYT: True or False? The Tussle Over Ping Fu’s Memoir

– “The marriage took place while she was living in California, she said. “I had a first marriage and that’s how I got my green card,” she said by telephone. She married on Sept. 1, 1986 and divorced three years later. “
– “contentious issue, …were the result of exaggeration or unclear communication with her ghostwriter, MeiMei Fox of Los Angeles, she said.
“Ms. Fox “wrote it wrong,’’ she said. ‘‘I corrected it three times but it didn’t get corrected.’’
“In general, Ms. Fox may have ‘‘just made some searches on the Internet that maybe weren’t correct,’’ Ms. Fu said.”

Feb. 21, 2013, Amazon brought back lin’s original 1-star review, her new 5-star review was taken off-line. However, lin decided to replaced the content of her original 1-star review with the newer 5-star review instead.

Feb. 22, 2013, MAKE published “Ping Fu Stands Her Ground“.

Feb. 23, 2013, A North Carolina local newspaper published “Geomagic founder Ping Fu says Chinese bloggers are tormenting her over memoir“. In which Ping Fu reverted her consolitary tone in Guardian and went on calling her critic “Chinese hackers”, “smear campaign”, “Internet Terrorists”. Within hours, a dozen or so thoughful and rational comments appeared protest the newspaper’s lack of journalistic integrity and demand Ping Fu to address the fack-checking reviewers’ questions instead of labeling them. The comments were deleted the next morning and commenting function turned off for the entire article. Some of the deleted comments were saved on Amazon Discussion Forum. The newsobserver.com article also revealed that Ping Fu got most of her story line from a hypnosis session done in 2005.

Feb. 25, 2013, 3D system announced their 4th Quarter Earning where they missed analysis expectation, DDD stock dropped ~9%+. seekingalpha.com analyst Georgi Dimitrov published a couple of informative reports on 3D Systems: “Making Sense of 3D Systems 2012 Results“, and “3D Printing’s Intersection of Promise and Reality – An Interview with Terry Wohlers“.

Feb. 25, 2013, Eddie Cheng announced the creation of http://www.debunkingbendnotbreak.com/

Feb. 27, 2013, 3D System completed Geomagic acquisition. Geomagic seems to have been sold at a discount of 55Million cash (instead of much speculated stock). There was no mention of Ping Fu becoming 3D System future Chief Strategy Officer in the press release. Original mention of CSO was also removed from her wikipedia page.

Feb. 27, 2013, Fang Zhouzi published 10th installment on Ping Fu, “Ping Fu’s Two Memoirs in Two Worlds“, comparing her “Bend, Not Break” to her 1996 essay collection on life in the US published in Chinese “Floating Bottle – Essays on Life in America.” 漂流瓶旅美散记傅蘋著湖北少年儿童出版社1996 ISBN:7-5353-1544-5

Feb. 28, 2013, Chinese American author William Poy Lee published “Bent & Twice Broken: Penguin China-bashes to Protect Ping Fu’s Flawed ‘Memoir’“.

March 1, 2013, Ping Fu gave a talk at Downtown Speakers Series in Las Vegas.

March 4, 2013, Amazon reviewer “Romantic Realist” created a wiki page Bend Not Break. 25 minutes after its creation, a proposal to delete was put on the page by a wiki editor, citing book being not notable. If nothing is done, the page shall be systematically deleted within 7 days. 1.5 hours later, VanHarrisArt proposed to delete the page immediately, citing “Attack”. 15 minutes after VanHarrisArt’s proposal, Tokyogirl79 rescued the page, indicated there were enough high quality coverage to warrant the book’s notibility. Tokyogirl79 is still fighting with VanHarrisArt for the page’s right to existence as of March 8, 2013. Currently the dispute is being reviewed by Wiki Admin Board.

March 11, 2013, UK Engineering and Technology Magazine (IET) published “Interview -Ping Fu“, by Nick Smith.

March 12, 2013, Sylvester Stallone Rear End Ping Fu blogger site went live. Focusing on an encounter illustrated in Ping Fu’s book between her and Sylvester Stallone in Santa Fe, New Mexico, during 1984-1985.

March 15, 2013, Mr. Liangfu Wu published A Comprehensive Review of “Bend, Not Break, A Life in Two Worlds” on Amazon Discussion Forum.

March 19, 2013, The Sydney Morning Herald published Bending with the winds of 3D change by Matthew Hall.

March 19, 2013, Information from SuZhou University was disclosed on Amazon and various news outlets that stated Ping Fu withdrew from SuZhou University in March 1982. No degree was granted, no thesis was submitted, and other details such as her English class grades, thesis topic and a discipline demerit on her school record.

[1] ^ http://www.npr.org/2013/01/22/169355935/tina-browns-must-reads-hidden-lives
[2] ^ http://www.amazon.com/review/R22LIB1HMUDXPB/ref=cm_cr_pr_viewpnt#R22LIB1HMUDXPB
[3] ^ http://www.forbes.com/sites/jennagoudreau/2013/01/23/one-womans-journey-from-chinese-labor-camp-to-top-american-tech-entrepreneur/
[4] ^ http://www.forbeschina.com/news/news.php?id=22981&page=1
[5] ^ http://fangzhouzi.blog.hexun.com/82986007_d.html
[6] ^ https://twitter.com/pfugeomagic/status/295992561808576512
[7] ^ http://www.forbes.com/sites/jennagoudreau/2013/01/31/bend-not-break-author-ping-fu-responds-to-backlash/
[8] ^ http://www.amazon.com/professor-philosophy-Princeton-reflection-Revolution-/forum/Fx1M49LYP8YZYQ4/TxN4C295ZFQO4X/1/ref=cm_cd_fp_ef_tft_tp?_encoding=UTF8&asin=1591845521
[9] ^ http://history.psu.edu/directory/efb12
[10] ^ http://www.huffingtonpost.com/ping-fu/sad-but-not-broken_b_2603466.html
[11] ^ http://www.huffingtonpost.com/ping-fu/clarifying-the-facts-in-bend-not-break_b_2603405.html
[12] ^ http://www.nytimes.com/best-sellers-books/2013-02-10/combined-print-and-e-book-nonfiction/list.html
[13] ^ http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2013/feb/04/ping-fu-book-chinese-critics
[14] ^ http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2013/02/04/ping-fu-defends-bend-not-break-memoir-against-online-chinese-attack.html
[15] ^ http://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/books/booknews/9849838/Doubts-over-Chinese-author-lauded-by-Michelle-Obama.html
[16] ^ http://www.amazon.com/Thoughts-share-everybody-know-opinions/forum/Fx1M49LYP8YZYQ4/Tx22LN92Y4MJT6I/3/ref=cm_cd_et_md_pl?_encoding=UTF8&asin=1591845521&cdMsgID=Mx1VR91XHG8D3EX&cdMsgNo=73&cdSort=oldest#Mx1VR91XHG8D3EX
[17] ^ http://www.amazon.com/Could-you-really-be-sued/forum/Fx1M49LYP8YZYQ4/TxHGM6UGDYXBVN/1/ref=cm_cd_fp_ef_tft_tp?_encoding=UTF8&asin=1591845521
[18] ^ http://www.amazon.com/Is-this-legal/forum/Fx1M49LYP8YZYQ4/Tx1UUF8HDHXIJGV/1/ref=cm_cd_fp_ef_tft_tp?_encoding=UTF8&asin=1591845521
[19] ^ http://www.amazon.com/gp/pdp/profile/A1WHTYYSWTZO9V/ref=cm_cd_et_pdp
[20] ^ http://www.amazon.com/Who-is-Van-Harris/forum/Fx1M49LYP8YZYQ4/Tx3D0YM6Q4P3SV2/3/ref=cm_cd_et_md_pl?_encoding=UTF8&asin=1591845521&cdMsgID=Mx23KIM2ZWAHFL3&cdMsgNo=55&cdSort=oldest#Mx23KIM2ZWAHFL3
[21] ^ http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2013/02/11/the-persecution-of-ping-fu.html
[22] ^ http://www.guardian.co.uk/books/2013/feb/13/ping-fu-controversy-china-cultural-revolution
[23] ^ http://www.citronresearch.com/citron-reports-on-ddd/
[24] ^ http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/02/15/us-3dprinters-stocks-idUSBRE91E01S20130215