Staff

U.S. Embassy Weibo Post on Trump Deleted

President Donald Trump’s visit to Beijing this week is a topic no doubt many Chinese have opinions about. Naturally, however, discussions between Trump and Xi Jinping touch on many issues that are too sensitive to speak of openly on social media. One of those issues is North Korea. A seemingly innocent post at around 2PM Beijing time by Weibo user “Wang Dong Money” (王东Money), a former magazine editor with just under 76,000 fans, was deleted less than two hours later. It simply read: There is a big foreign affairs event in Beijing tomorrow. From the afternoon to evening, many...

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Ai Weiwei Criticism of U.S. Scrubbed from Weibo

On October 13, 2017, Kimberly Yam wrote a piece in the Arts & Culture section at Huffington Post in which she discussed Ai Weiwei’s documentary “Human Flow,” a work on the global refugee crisis that Ai told the site was “a message to the Trump administration.” Yam’s piece ran under the headline: “Ai Weiwei Believes The U.S. Has Hit A Low When It Comes To Human Rights.” Today, almost two weeks later, Hung Huang (洪晃), the well-known television host, author and publisher of iLook fashion magazine, posted an image of the Huffington Post piece on Weibo with the simple words,...

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Observations on the 19th Congress Report

The following preliminary observations on the political report to the 19th National Congress of the Chinese Communist Party of China were offered by an expert on Chinese politics who wished not to be identified by their real name. The piece is published under the penname Wu Bing (吴冰). We offer only a partial translation of Wu’s observations here, followed by the original Chinese in full. For accuracy, we refer readers to the original — we thought it was important to get these observations out quickly, and so were translating under time constraints. My overall assessment is that the political report...

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Six Decades of CCP Congress Reports

We are now just two weeks from the 19th National Congress of the Chinese Communist Party. And while it is difficult to know what to expect from the meeting’s political report, a highly formalized document that will outline the priorities and accomplishments of General Secretary Xi Jinping and the Party he leads, we can familiarize ourselves with the political reports of China’s past — and the stilted discourse therein. With that in mind, here are downloadable links to each political report since the 8th National Congress of the CCP in September 1956, spanning more than 60 years. Of the...

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No Holiday for Censors

China’s National Day holiday is meant to be a time for celebration — and also for a good deal of propaganda about the glories of the Chinese Communist Party, the unity of the people, and all-around prosperity, equality and good feeling. It is perhaps not surprising, then, that censors on popular social media platforms like Weibo worked around the clock to ensure that dissenting voices, or just plaintive ones, were tucked out of view. The following post by Weibo user Wen Jinrang was available for more than a day before being cut down by censors on the platform. It...

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All Hands for Cybersecurity

This cartoon, called “Joint Protection” (共同守护), was created by Xu Jun (徐骏) for China’s official Xinhua News Agency, and posted on September 20, 2017, to commemorate the national China Cybersecurity Week. The cartoon shows hands representing a number of different parties surrounding the internet, represented by the smiling “@” symbol (the internet being delighted, of course, to receive such positive restraint on its chaotic tendencies). This laying on of hands around the internet creates a bright white zone labelled “cybersecurity.” The hands are labelled, clockwise from left, as “government,” “social organizations,” “internet masses” and “enterprises.” Here is a brief...

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