China Bans Cryptocurrency Transactions and Mining

On Friday, Chinese regulators announced a nationwide ban on cryptocurrency transactions and cryptocurrency mining. The culmination of a years-long crackdown, the move was meant to close loopholes in previous attempts to regulate cryptocurrency, root out rivals to government-issued money, and reduce the energy consumption of the heavily polluting sector. It also comes amid Xi Jinping’s long-running anti-corruption campaign and more recent efforts to reign in powerful tech-sector businesses and monopolistic platforms. Stock prices for Bitcoin and other popular cryptocurrencies nose-dived...

Under the powerful machinery of the party-state, ignorance and fear can be cultivated, information and news can be blocked, truth and reality can be distorted. But once you have personally experienced it, once you have witnessed it for yourself, you cannot feign ignorance, nor give up recording it, nor sit and wait for death. The darkness is boundless, and but a trace of truth and light remains: this trace must not be surrendered."

- Missing #MeToo activist Huang Xueqin, in a 2019 essay first published in Matters

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Translation: Blogger Huang Zhijie Returns After Six-month Disappearance

Huang Zhijie, the executive editor of Watching Media and a popular self-media blogger, has resurfaced after disappearing from social media for six months when one of his posts curried enough anonymous threats to himself and his family that he called the police. Huang’s troubles began around the Lunar New Year, when photos of people kowtowing to their elders made the rounds online. He lambasted the New Year’s tradition as “backwards”—and then was bombarded with phone calls and messages from strangers asking for his address. Mandy Zuo first reported on the controversy for the South China...

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Lithuania Urges Citizens to Ditch Chinese Smartphones Over Censorship, Data Security Concerns

This week, Lithuania’s Ministry of Defense urged its citizens to throw away popular Chinese 5G smartphones after it published a report slamming the devices for content censoring capabilities and improper data collection. The government audited three Chinese smartphone models—the Xiaomi Mi 10T 5G, Huawei P40 5G, and OnePlus 8T 5G—to assess potential cybersecurity issues, as Chinese phones have flooded the European market over the past year. The government criticism also comes at a time of seriously strained relations between China and Lithuania, touched off by a newly proposed Taiwan...

#MeToo Activist Huang Xueqin and Labor Activist Wang Jianbing Are Missing, Feared Detained

Friends of two Guangzhou-based activists who have been incommunicado since Sunday fear that they have been detained and may be facing prosecution. Prominent #MeToo activist Huang Xueqin (Sophia Huang) had been planning to leave Guangzhou for Shenzhen on July 19, and fly from Hong Kong to London the following day. She was due to begin a Master’s program at the University of Sussex as a recipient of the Chevening Scholarship. Her friend Wang Jianbing, a longtime advocate for workers with occupational diseases, was planning to see her off. As days passed without news of the two activists, Huang...

#MeToo Activist Huang Xueqin and Labor Activist Wang Jianbing Are Missing, Feared Detained

Friends of two Guangzhou-based activists who have been incommunicado since Sunday fear that they have been detained and may be facing prosecution. Prominent #MeToo activist Huang Xueqin (Sophia Huang) had been planning to leave Guangzhou for Shenzhen on July 19, and fly from Hong Kong to London the following day. She was due to begin a Master’s program at the University of Sussex as a recipient of the Chevening Scholarship. Her friend Wang Jianbing, a longtime advocate for workers with occupational diseases, was planning to see her off. As days passed without news of the two activists, Huang...

Hong Kong’s Expansive National Security Law Swallows Activists, Bail Requests, and M&Ms

Hong Kong authorities’ implementation of the National Security Law has been expanding in scope and strictness, with broader language used to describe alleged violations and harsh interpretations of individual cases. As civil society crumbles under its weight, the law is increasingly revealing itself to be a tool for crushing dissent rather than protecting security. Iain Marlow at Bloomberg traced the quiet evolution of the language used in National Security Law cases:  City authorities have begun using the phrase “contrary to the interests of national security” in recent weeks to define new...

#MeToo Activist Huang Xueqin and Labor Activist Wang Jianbing Are Missing, Feared Detained

Friends of two Guangzhou-based activists who have been incommunicado since Sunday fear that they have been detained and may be facing prosecution. Prominent #MeToo activist Huang Xueqin (Sophia Huang) had been planning to leave Guangzhou for Shenzhen on July 19, and fly from Hong Kong to London the following day. She was due to begin a Master’s program at the University of Sussex as a recipient of the Chevening Scholarship. Her friend Wang Jianbing, a longtime advocate for workers with occupational diseases, was planning to see her off. As days passed without news of the two activists, Huang...

Q&A: Leta Hong Fincher on China’s Resilient Feminists

A former journalist, Leta Hong Fincher was the first American to receive a PhD in Sociology from Tsinghua University in Beijing. Her research there led to her first book, “Leftover Women: The Resurgence of Gender Inequality in China,” which examined rising gender inequalities in China today through the lens of economics, marriage, and the real estate market. Her widely acclaimed second book, “Betraying Big Brother: The Feminist Awakening in China,” examines the rise of a new feminist movement in China and profiles several of the key participants, including the...

China Bans Cryptocurrency Transactions and Mining

On Friday, Chinese regulators announced a nationwide ban on cryptocurrency transactions and cryptocurrency mining. The culmination of a years-long crackdown, the move was meant to close loopholes in previous attempts to regulate cryptocurrency, root out rivals to government-issued money, and reduce the energy consumption of the heavily polluting sector. It also comes amid Xi Jinping’s long-running anti-corruption campaign and more recent efforts to reign in powerful tech-sector businesses and monopolistic platforms. Stock prices for Bitcoin and other popular cryptocurrencies nose-dived...

#MeToo Activist Huang Xueqin and Labor Activist Wang Jianbing Are Missing, Feared Detained

Friends of two Guangzhou-based activists who have been incommunicado since Sunday fear that they have been detained and may be facing prosecution. Prominent #MeToo activist Huang Xueqin (Sophia Huang) had been planning to leave Guangzhou for Shenzhen on July 19, and fly from Hong Kong to London the following day. She was due to begin a Master’s program at the University of Sussex as a recipient of the Chevening Scholarship. Her friend Wang Jianbing, a longtime advocate for workers with occupational diseases, was planning to see her off. As days passed without news of the two activists, Huang...

China Bans Cryptocurrency Transactions and Mining

On Friday, Chinese regulators announced a nationwide ban on cryptocurrency transactions and cryptocurrency mining. The culmination of a years-long crackdown, the move was meant to close loopholes in previous attempts to regulate cryptocurrency, root out rivals to government-issued money, and reduce the energy consumption of the heavily polluting sector. It also comes amid Xi Jinping’s long-running anti-corruption campaign and more recent efforts to reign in powerful tech-sector businesses and monopolistic platforms. Stock prices for Bitcoin and other popular cryptocurrencies nose-dived...

#MeToo Activist Huang Xueqin and Labor Activist Wang Jianbing Are Missing, Feared Detained

Friends of two Guangzhou-based activists who have been incommunicado since Sunday fear that they have been detained and may be facing prosecution. Prominent #MeToo activist Huang Xueqin (Sophia Huang) had been planning to leave Guangzhou for Shenzhen on July 19, and fly from Hong Kong to London the following day. She was due to begin a Master’s program at the University of Sussex as a recipient of the Chevening Scholarship. Her friend Wang Jianbing, a longtime advocate for workers with occupational diseases, was planning to see her off. As days passed without news of the two activists, Huang...

Evergrande Protestors Become Target of Stability Maintenance

Evergrande offices across China have been beset by protesting retail investors and homeowners concerned that the real estate giant is on the verge of bankruptcy. The company is facing a liquidity crisis and may default on its debts. At Reuters, David Kirton reported on the protests at Evergrande’s Shenzhen headquarters: Around midday, more than 60 uniformed security personnel formed a wall in front of the main entrances to the glistening tower in the southern boomtown of Shenzhen, where protesters shouted at company representatives. “A company as big as yours, how much money has been...

Human Rights

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Apple Daily’s Headquarters Raided, Executives Arrested, Computers Seized

Apple Daily struck a defiant note after Hong Kong police raided its headquarters, arrested its executives, froze its bank accounts, and seized its journalists’ computers: “[we will] press on till the end to see the arrival of dawn.” Early on Thursday morning, hundreds of police officers entered Apple Daily’s headquarters and arrested the company’s CEO, COO, and leading editors, notably Ryan Law, on charges of colluding with foreign powers and using journalism as “a tool to endanger national security.” The sweeping arrests follow a long pressure campaign against the paper and its leaders...

Politics

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Biden Calls Xi To Set Up “Guardrails” On The Relationship

Frustrated by tepid progress in talks on trade, climate, and the South China Sea, among other issues, President Biden called President Xi Jinping for the first time in seven months last Thursday. It was only the second such call of Biden’s presidency, and comes after months of sometimes rancorous relations. At The New York Times, Zolan Kanno-Youngs and David E. Sanger reported on the Biden-Xi call: The call, which a senior administration official said lasted 90 minutes, came at a particularly delicate time. Tensions are growing over Taiwan and the South China Sea, and Mr. Biden is trying to...

Society

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China Restricts Minors To Three Hours Of Online Gaming Per Week

This week, China extended restrictions on minors’ screen time. New regulations issued by the National Press and Publication Administration will limit minors’ online gaming to only three hours per week: one hour from 8:00-9:00 p.m. on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. The move is part of a broader campaign by the Chinese government to promote healthier lifestyles among youth, and to crack down on tech companies’ growing influence on society. Chris Buckley of The New York Times described the impetus for these new regulations: “Recently many parents have reported that game addiction among some...

China & the World

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Taiwan Plus Media Platform Launched in Challenge to China’s Discourse Power

On August 30, Taiwan’s Ministry of Culture introduced a new English-language news and media streaming platform, Taiwan Plus (Taiwan+). The government-backed platform was established specifically for international audiences, with the goal of projecting a positive image of Taiwan to the world and countering China-centric narratives on Taiwan. Taiwan Today described President Tsai Ing-wen’s vision for the platform: In a special video message marking the launch, President Tsai Ing-wen said the platform is expected to promote Taiwan’s experiences and perspectives on regional and global affairs...

Law

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#MeToo Activist Huang Xueqin and Labor Activist Wang Jianbing Are Missing, Feared Detained

Friends of two Guangzhou-based activists who have been incommunicado since Sunday fear that they have been detained and may be facing prosecution. Prominent #MeToo activist Huang Xueqin (Sophia Huang) had been planning to leave Guangzhou for Shenzhen on July 19, and fly from Hong Kong to London the following day. She was due to begin a Master’s program at the University of Sussex as a recipient of the Chevening Scholarship. Her friend Wang Jianbing, a longtime advocate for workers with occupational diseases, was planning to see her off. As days passed without news of the two activists, Huang...

Information Revolution

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2021 Journalism Awards: A China Reportage Reading List

CDT celebrates the award-winning reporting on China from this past year. It has been an exceptionally challenging year for foreign correspondents in China, amid expulsions, government intimidation and harassment, and the narrowing space for investigative reporting in general. And despite these challenges, reporters have produced exceptional stories that have awakened, educated, and moved the international community. Below is a selection of stories that have picked up top journalism prizes in 2021: The 2021 Pulitzer Prize Winner in Public Service Winner: The New York Times For courageous,...

Culture & the Arts

Latest

Translation: Blogger Huang Zhijie Returns After Six-month Disappearance

Huang Zhijie, the executive editor of Watching Media and a popular self-media blogger, has resurfaced after disappearing from social media for six months when one of his posts curried enough anonymous threats to himself and his family that he called the police. Huang’s troubles began around the Lunar New Year, when photos of people kowtowing to their elders made the rounds online. He lambasted the New Year’s tradition as “backwards”—and then was bombarded with phone calls and messages from strangers asking for his address. Mandy Zuo first reported on the controversy for the South China...

The Great Divide

Latest

Evergrande Protestors Become Target of Stability Maintenance

Evergrande offices across China have been beset by protesting retail investors and homeowners concerned that the real estate giant is on the verge of bankruptcy. The company is facing a liquidity crisis and may default on its debts. At Reuters, David Kirton reported on the protests at Evergrande’s Shenzhen headquarters: Around midday, more than 60 uniformed security personnel formed a wall in front of the main entrances to the glistening tower in the southern boomtown of Shenzhen, where protesters shouted at company representatives. “A company as big as yours, how much money has been...

Sci-Tech

Latest

China Bans Cryptocurrency Transactions and Mining

On Friday, Chinese regulators announced a nationwide ban on cryptocurrency transactions and cryptocurrency mining. The culmination of a years-long crackdown, the move was meant to close loopholes in previous attempts to regulate cryptocurrency, root out rivals to government-issued money, and reduce the energy consumption of the heavily polluting sector. It also comes amid Xi Jinping’s long-running anti-corruption campaign and more recent efforts to reign in powerful tech-sector businesses and monopolistic platforms. Stock prices for Bitcoin and other popular cryptocurrencies nose-dived...

Environment

Latest

China Bans Cryptocurrency Transactions and Mining

On Friday, Chinese regulators announced a nationwide ban on cryptocurrency transactions and cryptocurrency mining. The culmination of a years-long crackdown, the move was meant to close loopholes in previous attempts to regulate cryptocurrency, root out rivals to government-issued money, and reduce the energy consumption of the heavily polluting sector. It also comes amid Xi Jinping’s long-running anti-corruption campaign and more recent efforts to reign in powerful tech-sector businesses and monopolistic platforms. Stock prices for Bitcoin and other popular cryptocurrencies nose-dived...

Hong Kong

Latest

#MeToo Activist Huang Xueqin and Labor Activist Wang Jianbing Are Missing, Feared Detained

Friends of two Guangzhou-based activists who have been incommunicado since Sunday fear that they have been detained and may be facing prosecution. Prominent #MeToo activist Huang Xueqin (Sophia Huang) had been planning to leave Guangzhou for Shenzhen on July 19, and fly from Hong Kong to London the following day. She was due to begin a Master’s program at the University of Sussex as a recipient of the Chevening Scholarship. Her friend Wang Jianbing, a longtime advocate for workers with occupational diseases, was planning to see her off. As days passed without news of the two activists, Huang...

Taiwan

Latest

Lithuania Urges Citizens to Ditch Chinese Smartphones Over Censorship, Data Security Concerns

This week, Lithuania’s Ministry of Defense urged its citizens to throw away popular Chinese 5G smartphones after it published a report slamming the devices for content censoring capabilities and improper data collection. The government audited three Chinese smartphone models—the Xiaomi Mi 10T 5G, Huawei P40 5G, and OnePlus 8T 5G—to assess potential cybersecurity issues, as Chinese phones have flooded the European market over the past year. The government criticism also comes at a time of seriously strained relations between China and Lithuania, touched off by a newly proposed Taiwan...

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