The following story appeared in Nanfang Weekend. It follows the story of one particular forum post at the Tinya Club [sic]. The post first appeared in February 22, 2005. Since then, it was been viewed more than 223,000 times, and almost 4,000 people have commented on it. It is estimated that it will take a person 7 hours to read the whole thread. With the national exposure from Nanfang Weekend, there will probably be another huge traffic surge.
What is the subject? It is about rich versus poor in China. The extraordinary thing is that the crucial discourse contained little or no political, economic or sociological jargon. There was no invocation of Marx-Engels-Stalin-Mao and no Chinese census data. It was just two principal characters describing their daily lives and commenting on each other.
…Why did this post generate so much resonance? In truth, after more than 20 years of economic development, a wealthy class has emerged in China. In the eyes of the people, the wealthy are labeled as “successful people” on one hand; yet, on the other hand, they are also characterized as “so poor as to have nothing left except money” with respect to basic human values. The mainstream Internet voice is for democratic rule of law, fairness, justice, trust, amity, orderliness, harmony between man and nature and that is for the best. Society and the Internet should actively promote the beneficial, reform the backwards and condemn the corrupt. Yi Yeqing was doomed to lose, because her point of view represents a regressive culture that is rejected by the mass of netizens. Legally obtained the wealth is an indicator of the results of one’s labor, but it is not the basis to despise and disrespect others. This is the necessary requirement for a harmonious society.