Almost every Chinese kid has been summoned while outside playing with their playmates: “Your mother is calling you home for dinner!” Recently, a BBS post titled “Jia Junpeng, your mother is calling you home for dinner!” became an Internet phenomenon, inspiring its own World of Warcraft Forum topic which in turn gained millions of views (read more about the story here).
However, nobody knows whether Jia Junpeng exists or not. But the phrase may have inspired Chinese netizens to join the game by reminding them of their own childhood experiences.
But only days later, this phrase is now being transformed into an entirely new meaning after the creation of a new phrase: “Guo Baofeng, your mother is calling you home for dinner!”
Unlike Jia Junpeng, Guo Baofeng (Twitter handle: @amoiist) is a familiar name to many Chinese twitterers and he is also an active blogger, living in Xiamen. Here is how this story developed, from the Guardian:
The hundreds following amoiist on Twitter were used to his stream of messages. But they ended abruptly with two terse updates early yesterday morning.
“i have been arrested by Mawei police, SOS” he wrote. Then shortly afterwards: “Pls help me, I grasp the phone during police sleep.”
His followers quickly passed on his plea to other Twitterers. But since then there has been silence from amoiist – also known as Peter Guo, or Guo Bofeng – who is apparently the latest internet user to be caught up in an inquiry that began with claims of defamation but which police now say involves “state secrecy issues”.
As many as seven bloggers have been detained over claims that a 25-year-old woman, Yan Xiaoling, had been gang-raped and murdered. It was further alleged that the man responsible was connected to local authorities in her city in Fujian province, southern China.
Officials dismissed the stories, which first surfaced in late June, and insisted Yan had suffered a haemorrhage caused by an ectopic pregnancy. They turned their attention to tracking down those they suspected were responsible for the stories.
And from Radio France International Chinese service, translated by CDT:
After five netizens were detained for libel in Fuzhou, there is a new wave of performance art on the Chinese Internet. A netizen is asking:”Everyone one send a postcard, call Guo Baofeng home for dinner.”
Netizen Beifeng (北风) made this call on Twitter… The postcard reads, “Guo Baofeng, your mother is calling you home for dinner!” This phrase was borrowed from the Internet hot expression “Jia Junpeng, your mother is calling you home for dinner.” And those who participate will take a photo of their postcard before sending it and upload the photo onto the Internet.
… Netizen Anti (安替) said: Sending a postcard to prisoners of conscience is an assymetrical way to protest. It will become popular because it is hard to trace back to participants, has a low cost to participate, and has an excellent online exhibition effect. It is hard for the authorities to ban, and it gives prison authorities clear pressure.
See also from Oiwan Lam of Global Voices: Calling Guo Baofeng back home for dinner!
The following are examples of Tweets sent out about Guo Baofeng:
@10:15 AM Jul 24, 2009
http://twitpic.com/bgmdo – Guo Baofeng,Post Card
03:21 AM Jul 24, 2009
GVa: China: Calling Guo Baofeng back home for dinner!: Blogger Peter Guo Baofeng, or amoiist, has been detai.. http://bit.ly/Z4KAG
10:13 PM Jul 21, 2009
RT @mranti: Pls send postcards to jailed Chinese blogger @amoiist: Guo Baofeng, Rm 205, No.2 Detention House, Fuzhou, Fujian, China 350000
10:12 PM Jul 21, 2009
Pls send postcards to jailed Chinese blogger @amoiist: Guo Baofeng, Rm 205, No.2 Detention House, Fuzhou, Fujian, China 350000
08:15 PM Jul 21, 2009
RT @feng37: From Peter Guo’s sister, his mailing address is: Guo Baofeng, #205 , Fuzhou #2 Prison (福州第二看守所205郭宝锋)，“Please write my broth …
07:43 PM Jul 21, 2009
From Peter Guo’s sister, his mailing address is: Guo Baofeng, #205 , Fuzhou #2 Prison (福州第二看守所205郭宝锋)，“Please write my brother!” #amoiist
07:10 PM Jul 16, 2009
RT @xiafangwu Charter 08 signatory Guo Baofeng @amoiist arested in Fujian, police may talk to registered journalists. phone# 0591 83985110
A grass-mud horse rider calling Guo Baofeng home for dinner.
Also, please click here to watch a video clip: “The world is calling Guo Baofeng home for dinner.”
Update: Netease BBS also reported this news.