“Drinking Tea” (喝茶) is now a common vocabulary in online political discourse. It refers to the widespread practices by DSD police or other authorities to harass, intimidate and conduct information-gathering on citizens for their political activities. Although each such “Tea” session always comes with the warning to keep the conversation to oneself, more and more netizens have been sharing their “Drinking Tea” experiences; as a result, we can see that the government effort to control online speech goes way beyond technological filtering and deleting of content and blocking of foreign websites.
The following excerpt and translation is from hexiesociety blog:
Jason Ng, a famous Chinese blogger of Kenengba.com, was taken by police to have a conversation in June 4, 2010. Since that, he has being low-key for a long time. Many people are worry about him, asking him whether he was threatened by the police or government on that day. Therefore he updated a new post in his private blog about what exactly happened on that day. The follow conversation is translated properly from original Chinese.
When we reached the police station, they told me to wait in a room with exchange equipments. A fat policewoman came to ask me:
“Have you said anything about Tiananmen Square protests on Internet?”
“Have you said anything?”
“Have you ever said anything?”
Then she went away, she was not in charge of my case.
And later a middle age police name Zhang came to me, whose son has the same age of me, he said when in June 4, 1989, he was a armed police to keep peace in Tiananmen Square. The he told me, it was not the time for China to have democracy, because there is only one politic party in the country.
Later, another police name Wang came to me. He said he was also not in charge of my case, but he was on duty. He repeated the conversation which I just had with the fat policewoman, and I replied the same. Then he took out a piece of paper, asking:
“T, W, I, T, T, E, Y dot COM, is this your website?”
“Never heard of it.”
He gave me the paper, and I told him he made a mistake, the last character was R, not Y.
“Is this website yours?” He asked again.
I said no, of course not. I wish it was, but their brains just couldn’t understand the fact.