[This week’s Communications column for the Vanuatu Independent.]
I came across the following exchange (translated from the original Chinese language) on a technical news site today. This series of comments come from Xiaonei, a Chinese blog site, following a post about the recent global economic meltdown. (The writers’ names have been obscured for reasons that will become obvious):
AAA: Well written!! But why can’t I share it [i.e. link it to social media sites like Facebook or LiveJournal]?
BBB: Yeah, I can’t share it either. Must be because it’s today!
000[the author]: Well, I can post it, you guys should be able to share it….
CCC: [a few comments about the actual content of the article]
DDD: I guess Xiaonei is having problems recently. Anything with numbers seems to run into problems.
AAA: Anything with certain numbers runs into problems around this time of year….
EEE: I’m sure this maintenance is perfectly normal, as it is for all other Chinese websites right now. [sarcasm]
BBB: There is no spoon~~! [this in English]
FFF: Wow, nice word choice guys.
Mystified? You wouldn’t be if you had to deal with state censorship on a day to day basis. Today – the day the comments were being posted – marked the beginning of a worldwide observance of the 20th anniversary of the disruption by the Chinese People’s Liberation Army of the pro-Democracy demonstrations in Beijing’s Tiananmen Square.