Below is a list of the most popular essays archived by CDT Chinese in 2016. Many of the most popular Chinese-language posts also provided the source material that become some of our most widely viewed CDT English posts last year. Speaking on the relevance of the most popular CDT Chinese posts of 2016, CDT Founder and Editor-in-Chief Xiao Qiang says, “These most-visited pages on CDT’s Chinese site are not only a perfect showcase of the censored content most desirable to internet users able to circumvent the Great Firewall, but also a powerful indicator of what Chinese authorities are most afraid of allowing citizens to see and openly express inside China.”
- Open Letter: Loyal Party Members Call for Xi Jinping’s Resignation (忠诚党员促习近平辞职的公开信)
- On the eve of the National People’s Congress in March, this open letter urged President and CCP General Secretary Xi Jinping to step down in order to preserve China’s stability and his own “personal safety and that of [his] family.” Wujie News (无界新闻), the Xinjiang-based outlet that originally published the letter, was soon after taken offline, and several staff writers were detained (they were reportedly released in August). CDT English translated the letter in full, and that post similarly became the most read CDT English post in 2016.
- Du Chen: How Did the “Panama Papers” Shock the World? (Du Chen：震惊世界的巴拿马文件事件到底是怎么一回事)
- Vanke vs. Baoneng: Barbarians at the Gate, Zhao Family at the Rear (万科宝能之争：门口的野蛮人，背后的赵家人)
- This anonymous article on shareholder Baoneng Group’s attempt to take over real estate company Vanke popularized the epithet “Zhao family member” for those connected to the political elite.
- Why Do People Cherish The Elder? The Systemic Problems Behind His’ Internet Fame ( 为什么人们怀念长者？长者风靡网络背后的制度难题)
- President Xi’s Diary: Xi Apologies to the Whole Nation for His “Loose Clothing” Slip (【习总日记】习总为宽衣事件向全国人民道歉)
- Vox: The Panama Papers Leak, Explained With an Adorable Comic About Piggy Banks (一组漫画看懂巴拿马文件泄露事件)
- Chinese translation of an English-language Vox story explaining the Panama Papers revelations with a cartoon.
- 171 Party Members: Immediately Relieve Comrade Xi Jinping of All Posts (171名中国共产党员：就立即罢免习近平同志党内外一切职务告全党、全军、全国人民书)
- Coming on the heels of the first open letter asking Xi to resign, this second letter briefly appeared on the U.S.-based site Minjing News.
- Xie Bin: Panama Papers Make the CCP Blush With Shame (解滨：巴拿马文件让中共汗颜)
- “This international scandal could cast a pall over Xi Jinping and make his fans lose faith,” claims this article on the Panama Papers, published on the overseas website creaders.net.
- Netizen Voices: “Brother-in-Law” Added to Banned Words List (【网络民议】看敏感词库 已到姐夫)
- When Xi Jinping’s brother-in-law appeared among the Panama Papers, “brother-in-law” briefly trended on Weibo before the term was blocked. CDT Chinese editors compiled Weibo reactions. See also resident cartoonist Badiucao’s illustrated take on the censorship of the term.
- Badiucao: Facilitate Commerce and Loosen Clothing (巴丢草 | 通商宽衣)
- CDT resident cartoonist Badiucao takes Xi Jinping’s G20 gaffe literally.
Anne Henochowicz helped summarize the Chinese-language posts listed above.