As of June 24, the following search terms are blocked on Weibo (not including the “search for user” function).
Hong Kong: Political tensions between Beijing and Hong Kong are running especially high as many in the region cast votes in an ongoing referendum on electoral reform. As of Monday, more than 700,000 had participated in an unofficial poll that China’s state media calls an “illegal” “joke” that would carry “serious consequences.” The poll comes after Beijing released a “white paper” putting mainland priorities over the interests of the semi-autonomous region—to which many in Hong Kong answered with protest. More protest can be expected on July 1, Hong Kong’s SAR Establishment Day, which has seen protest marches each year since the 1997 handover.
- 港人＋上街: Hong Kongers + take to the streets
- 李柱铭: Martin Lee – Political activist and founding chairman of the Democratic Party in Hong Kong
- 基本法＋二十三: Hong Kong Basic Law + twenty-three (retested) – The basis of a proposed Hong Kong security law. If signed into law, Article 23 of the Hong Kong Basic Law would outlaw “treason” and “subversion” against the “Central People’s Government” (of mainland China). Protests in July, 2003 forced the bill to be shelved indefinitely. Terms related to Basic Law Article 23 were blocked from search results in July 2012 and again last year.
- 基本法＋23 : Hong Kong Basic Law + 23 (retested)
New Citizens’ Movement: The New Citizens’ Movement, which advocates causes such as officials’ asset disclosure and education rights for the children of migrants, has become a primary target in the central government’s crackdown on grassroots activism over the past year. Earlier this month three New Citizens were handed lengthy prison sentences.
- 公民+运动 – Citizens+Movement (retested)
Ling Jihua: A top adviser to former President Hu Jintao and once expected to be promoted to the Politburo, Ling Jihua became the center of a scandal after allegedly covering up the details of his son’s death in a 2012 Ferrari crash. A newly announced graft investigation into his brother Ling Zhengce has suggested that he may also be suspect in a new round of probes.
- 令计划＋大内总管: Ling Jihua + imperial palace housekeeper
- 令计划＋车祸: Ling Jihua + car accident
- 令计划＋情妇: Ling Jihua + mistress
- 亲属在美加: Relatives in the US and Canada – A reference to China’s “naked officials“—those officials who live in China while their family live abroad. Amid an official crackdown on Party corruption, focus is turning towards “naked officials.” A document leaked in 2012 of Central Committee members known to have relatives abroad is again making rounds on the Internet—the list said that 204 members had 247 relatives living in the US or Canada [Chinese].
- 苗德顺: Miao Deshun – The only Tiananmen protester arrested during the June 4th, 1989 crackdown known to still be in prison.
- 匕首: Dagger
- 重庆＋不会忘记: Chongqing + will not forget – In 2011, disgraced and imprisoned former Chongqing Party chief Bo Xilai hand-penned a letter [Chinese] in praise of Chongqing academic Sun Caixin.
- 毛＋清算: Mao + settle accounts
All Chinese-language words are tested using simplified characters. The same terms in traditional characters occasionally return different results.
CDT Chinese runs a project that crowd-sources filtered keywords on Sina Weibo search. CDT independently tests the keywords before posting them, but some searches later become accessible again. We welcome readers to contribute to this project so that we can include the most up-to-date information.
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