121 – China232 Story

Learn about China232 and learn why to signup for the new VIP English section.

ESL Conversation

A:  Add, I’m glad we finally decided to take our heads out of the sand and go ahead with the VIP section.

B:  Me too.  I know you wanted to keep everything free and were on the fence for quite a while about switching business models

A:  I guess part of me didn’t want to face reality. 

B:  I think it’s better now anyway.  Now we have more time to make the site way better.  Anyone who is really serious about improving their English will only have to cough up $75 per year to get full access to the new and improved site. Anyone who signs up won’t regret it.

A:  Ya. When you put it that way it’s actually a pretty sick deal.

Take our heads out of the sand:
  If your "head is in the sand" it means you aren’t facing reality.  It means you don’t want to see the truth because the truth is painful. 

On the fence:  If you are "on the fence" it means you haven’t made a decision yet. 

She is still on the fence about whether or not to go to graduate school in the fall.

Business models:  A business model is the way that a company earns money.

Google’s "business model" is to provide a free service and make their money from advertising. 
Our new business model at China232 is to charge annual subscription fee.

Part of me:  If you say "part of me" wants to to something.  It means that in some ways you want to do it, in some ways you don’t want to.  It means you can see the pro’s and con’s of making that decision.

Cough up:  "cough up" is a slang term that means to "spend money".

I coughed up 200 bucks for these tickets, and my girlfriend decided not to go at the last minute.

Put it that way:  This phrase means to explain something in a certain way. 

Sick:  This slang phrase really depends on the context.  It often means really really good. 

Kobe Bryant was sick in the 4th quarter of last night’s basketball game.


39 Responses to “121 – China232 Story”

  1. Tom Says:

    Hi Guys,

    After listening to the China232 story I decided to “get off the fence” and get a VIP membership. Just wanted to say that you were right. I’m already on VIP lesson 5. Great work! Definitely worth the $75! I can’t wait for more lessons.


  2. amy Says:

    hi guys, china 232 have became a great business, but we all stil luv it though
    good job add& andrew

  3. larry Says:

    im english learner in china.any one who wanna study english pls add me as your friend at skype or msn,


    hope talk to u guys soon

  4. Sunny Says:

    Hi~ I’m really love your English lessons~ and apperciate for those free lessons too. In fact I really want to subscrible as a VIP member and I remember your guys promised that it would be 3 vip lessons and 1 free lesson every week. But now it was only 8 VIP lessons and 1 free lesson for a month.. so I’m afraid if I paid for the vip fee.. will I get enough lessons in future?
    I’m really willing to join your VIP membership if you can promise 3 vip lessons a week~ thanks ~ sorry for acting rude :P I’m just wondering about that..

  5. Andrew Says:

    Hi Sunny,

    I’m glad you like the lessons. Actually, I think there was a misunderstanding. We said that we’d start with 3 VIP lessons and then continue to do at least one per week. Sometimes we’ll do some bonus stuff and talk about cooler things in the VIP room as well. The VIP lessons also have a full transcript of our entire show. It takes Add over 2 hours to do each one but they are really helpful to pick up each word we say. Don’t worry, you weren’t being rude. I hope this answers your question. Hope to see you in the VIP room anyway. I’m sure you’ll like it!


  6. Joey Says:

    just to appreciate all you guys have done yet, it\’s been all awsome with some oscillations still phenomenon,though.

  7. JD Kasinsky Says:

    Congratulations! I think it’s a good decision. I will be part of the VIP soon! Your podcasts are great and have to pay for them is good because is an incentive to study. If you have this for free you think: “well, I will be listening later”, but if you put money on it you have to pay more attention!

  8. Bhaskar Joshi Says:

    Hi guys,

    glad to know you decided to take your work to a next level……hope it adds extra vigor to your job…. I just wanna ask if there are any other ways besides Paypal to buy your lessons , because here in Nepal we do not have the card to do online buying…..

    gud luck

  9. alice Says:

    man~ i feel guilty to have this class for free. good work.
    keep it up!


  10. meret Says:

    Hi Andrew and Add
    You are to be congratulated on having done this VIP-section. I am member of the VIP-section since the very beginning and I can only recommend everybody subscibing to this section: great topics, funny, really intelligent, useful and current terms! Never seen an opportunity to learn English in such an excitable, hilarious way. 75 dollars is ridicules. Wish you never stop your great job! Take care, best wishes from switzerland

  11. sinan Says:

    Hello Add,

    I have been listening to both of you for over a year and I was little bit dissapointed after seeing that you decided to give us podcasts against payment.
    Anyway, because of knowing your effective lessons I\’d like to sign in VIP membership but there should be different payment ways. Only paypal is not enough in my opinion. There are lots of people who are not using this method.
    Do you think to put here another payment ways in future ? Then maybe I can join in .

  12. Alex Says:

    Hello guys!
    I agree with Sinan. It’s absolutely not convenient to use PayPal her in Russia.
    You should offer the other way for payment.
    Keep it up!! Really stick with your podcasts.

  13. maxim Says:

    Hey Alex!

    I don\\\’t know, I see no problems with PayPal here in Russia.

    Few tips:

    1. Pick up a bank with good Internet Banking services. I use VTB24. It\\\’s not an advertisement here. Actually, I\\\’m not all that crazy about this bank, but the fact is it has a huge network of outlets and (sic!) its Internet Banking is perfect.
    2. Purchase a special card for Internet use like VISA eCard. I guess now it costs about $1,5 for 6 months, so, it’s a good deal.
    3. Create a PayPal account and specify your card details in there.
    4. Make a request from your PayPal account to verify your card.
    5. Go to Internet Banking system and find the special PayPal code. And you can do this right after finishing your PayPal request, that’s why I think that VTB24 Internet Banking is perfect.
    6. Input this code into your PayPal account.

    This is it! Now you can use your card through PayPal for purchasing goods and services all over the world!

    Hope this helps!

    If you have any other questions, let me know!

    FYI: Btw, there are no troubles at all if you\\\’re going to just buy things! But there is a problem if you want to receive some money through PayPal as well. Actually, PayPal ban to receive any money for all Russian accounts. Of course, I\\\’m not condoning lying here, but, in fact, it\\\’s not necessary to indicate that you live in Russia when you go through registration process in PayPal. You can choose US, for example and then you\\\’ll be able to receive money successfully.

    And as a joke, Alex, you can ask Add to receive your payment through ПОЧТА РОССИИ ;o)

  14. sinan Says:

    Add, can we use moneygram in order to join this good VIP section ? Please tell us yes. :)

  15. add Says:

    Hello sinan,

    I just looked at Moneygram and yes, you may use this if you would like. If you do have a bank account though, in most countries paypal allows you to link your bank account to your paypal account. This will allow for immediate access to the VIP section.

    Feel free to use moneygram though, you just may have to wait a few days.

  16. add Says:


    I should mention that if you use Moneygram, please make the person you are sending money to Andrew Best. Then just send us your reference number on the contact us page.

  17. NooNoo Says:

    Hi dear.I really like your lessons.I became familiar with you by my dear teacher.I’m from Iran.Thanks for your exceotionally useful lessons.

  18. xiaofang Says:

    Hi, Add and Andrew, thank you for making so many free lessons for us. I really appreciate you. I\’ve been there since 2007, and collected all podcasts on my computer. I understand you set up the vip section, and support this way,but could you change the vip section more flexible? For example, charge per one lesson, such as 1$ for one lesson. Because I don\’t have so much time to study so many vip lessons, I can only squeeze some time to listen and practise, at the same time, I don\’t want to stop studying english.
    Best wishes to you.
    Alice from beijing

  19. Andrew Says:

    Hi Alice,

    It’s great to hear you’ve been with us so long! We love long time fans.
    You have an interesting idea. We considered that type of payment model before. In the end, we decided to make a really sweet VIP section and have users pay the annual price. I can understand your feeling but I’m sure if you decide to go ahead with the VIP membership you won’t be disappointed. It’s better than our old stuff. Who knows, maybe it’ll make you study more and improve faster than before. Anyway, whatever you decide, we hope you keep listening. Enjoy Beijing. It’s a great city!


  20. Aaron Says:

    thanks for your EN course

  21. Sneha Bhowmik Says:

    Hay two brothers, i am very pleased on your attempt to teach English. I am from Canada, your home country!!!!!! It was fine until you started adding VIP. the $75 is costly can you reduce the amount? come on guys, I think you still will earn money ( business model with more members) if you make it $50.


  22. Amr Wady Says:

    Hello folks,

    Congratulations on taking that decision BUT What does ”this cost a couple of boxes” mean? Is it a slang term or stuff like that?

    Have a nice day,

    Amr Wady from Egypt.

  23. Rob Says:

    Are you Andrew Best of

  24. Bonaz Says:

    Thank you very much, but just to make you know no ostrich has ever been seen with his head in the sand…
    thank you anyway, i bet my english is improving!

  25. Haley Park Says:

    Hi guys!
    You two brothers are doing amazing job here!
    I really enjoy to learn slangs with your rich voice everyday. I feel like to join VIP section soon. Thanks!

  26. pm778 Says:

    Completely agree that – $75 isn’t much. But it`s a bit difficult for Russian people to use PayPal. For us easy to use a webmoney. You should take it in to consideration.
    When a prepare to listen podcast, I thought you describe yourself and how you came to podcasting.

  27. Marina Says:

    Hi guys, just wanted to stop by and say thanks for everything you do its great!! i listen to your podcasts on my way to work you totally make my day!

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