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Sing to a new tune

[ 2010-09-08 11:48]     字号 [] [] []  
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Sing to a new tune

Reader's question:  

Baidu sings to a new tune as music battle continues China's largest search engine Baidu Inc launched a voice-based music search service on Monday, part of its efforts to grab more users following rival Google Inc's departure from the mainland.

Could you explain “sing to a new tune”?

My comments:

Baidu singing to a new tune means that it is trying something new, i.e. launching a voice-based music search service.

In other words, it is merely doing something different.

No actual singing taking place at the Baidu, that is. The "singing" here is a figurative speech – "sing a different tune" or "sing a different song" being common phrases for trying something different.

The "new tune" to which Baidu is now singing refers to the new search service. The author uses the words "singing" and "tune" because it's about a voice-based music search.

In other words, Baidu employees are not all of a sudden bursting into song en masse. Therefore, save your applause, if you will, for the writer instead.

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Go to Zhang Xin's column


About the author:

Zhang Xin has been with China Daily since 1988, when he graduated from Beijing Foreign Studies University. Write him at: zhangxin@chinadaily.com.cn, or raise a question for potential use in a future column.