As of February 27, the following search terms are blocked on Weibo (not including the “search for user” function).
Zhou Xiaoping: In October 2014, Xi Jinping praised patriotic blogger Zhou Xiaoping for his “positive energy” at the Beijing Forum on Art and Literature. Zhou was already infamous for his ardent nationalism and his tendency to misrepresent facts. Netizens nicknamed him Cutlassfish Zhou for lamenting the plight of cutlassfish farmers—who don’t exist, since cutlassfish only live in the wild.
- zhou＋带鱼: zhou + cutlassfish—i.e. Cutlassfish Zhou
- 周黛玉: Zhou Daiyu—Sounds like “Cutlassfish Zhou” (Zhou Daiyu). Incidentally, this Daiyu (黛玉) is the same name as one of the main characters of the classic novel “Dream of the Red Chamber,” Lin Daiyu (林黛玉).
Son of an Education Minister: As part of his fervent promotion of ideological orthodoxy in the Party and society, Xi Jinping called last December for “greater ideological guidance” in universities nationwide. Soonafter, the State Council and the CCP Central Committee issued a directive for ideologically sound coursework, and China’s Ministry of Education announced new rules banning textbooks that promote Western values.
- 袁＋(儿)子＋教材: Yuan + son + teaching material—After the new rules on textbooks were unveiled, Xinhua quoted Minister of Education Yuan Guiren as saying, “We should absolutely not let into the classroom teaching materials that spread Western values and ideology.” On January 31, an open letter to the Central Commission for Discipline Inspection was posted online accusing Yuan Guiren’s son, Yuan Xin, of using his familial power to make over ten billion yuan on textbook sales. Radio Free Asia reports that an unknown author posted the letter under the name of Chen Beidi [Chinese]. A national ID number and cell phone number were included in the letter.
- 袁＋上百亿: Yuan + over ten billion
- 高严＋猎狐行动: Gao Yan + Operation Fox Hunt—Gao Yan, a former top Party official and onetime executive at China’s State Power Corporation, reportedly fled China for Australia in 2002. “Operation Fox Hunt” is the name of a global campaign to nab corrupt officials who fled China with ill-gotten gains.
- 星际赌场: StarWorld casino—Casino in the StarWorld Hotel in Macau. “StarWorld Hotel” (星际酒店) is not blocked.
- 习老: Xi old
- 习＋信号: Xi + signal
- 红朝太祖: first emperor of the red dynasty—i.e. Mao Zedong
- 十八摸: eighteen strokes—From “Director Wolf’s Eighteen Strokes” (狼局长十八摸), a satirical song by the indie rock band Slap (耳光乐队). Watch a live recording on YouTube [Chinese].
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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