As Trump clashes with Big Tech, China’s censored Internet stands by

After President Trump was removed from his platform by Twitter and Facebook, and his supporters began mocking him with Chinese censorship of his social media, the president won support from an unexpected source: China.

“Legally he is still president. This is a coup,” a comment, which included an exclusive, was liked 21,000 times on the Chinese social media platform Weibo.

Another popular comment stated, “A country as large as the United States cannot tolerate Trump’s mouth”. “American Democracy Has Died.”

The comments were resolved by Guncha.com, a nationalist news site that created the hashtag #BigSappsunitedSoLensTrump # on Weibo. He was echoed by the Global Times, a newspaper controlled by the Communist Party.

Mr. Trump “lost his authority as a normal American citizen,” it wrote in an editorial. “Of course, this goes against the freedom to speak. American political elite have been advocating.”

Mr. Trump’s expulsion from American social media has consumed the Chinese Internet, one of the most rigorous censor forums on Earth, to stop violent crowds in the Capitol last week. Broadly speaking, those who write face jail for those who condemn what they regard as censorship elsewhere.

Much of the condemnation is inspired by China’s propaganda weapons. Highlighting the decisions of Twitter and Facebook, they believe that they are reinforcing their message to the Chinese people that no one in the world really enjoys freedom of speech. This gives the party more moral authority over Chinese speech.

“Some people believe that Twitter’s decision to suspend the US president’s account is a sign of democracy,” said Global Times editor Hu Zijin. wrote In one opinion with the headline “Twitter’s suspension of Trump’s account suggests that freedom to speak has limits in every society.”

It would be difficult for the United States to come back and play the role of “beacon of democracy”, Mr. Hu added in a Weibo post.

Many Chinese online users purchased the official line. A Chinese online poll polled nearly two-thirds of the 2,700 participants that Twitter should not have closed Mr. Trump’s account. The sponsor of the poll was a newspaper, owned by the Xinhua News Agency, the official mouthpiece of the Chinese government.

“I have learned over the past few days that American social media platforms often delete posts and also suspend accounts,” wrote a verified Weibo account called Su Jiande. “I have lost the last sign of respect for the country.”

The user thanked Weibo, allowing users to say whatever they wanted in search of the truth. (I read through the user’s Weibo timeline and found no signs of satire.) Many Weibo users urged Mr. Trump to open a Weibo account.

“This is not America as we know it,” commented a Weibo user, named Jiangbanzhang. “This is Saddam’s Iraq and Gaddafi’s Libya.”

Trump’s defenders compared the president from social media to Chinese-style censorship. “This is not China, this is the United States, and we are an independent country,” Sarah Huckabee Sanders, Mr. Trump’s former press secretary, wrote On twitter.

Chinese censorship does not work that way. In China, the speech about top leaders is heavily monitored and rigorous censored. People running Facebook and Twitter have the First Amendment right to choose what they can and cannot do on their platforms.

The Chinese government is required to dedicate two of its daily items to news websites Xi Jinping, China’s paramount leader. For example, on Tuesday, the online outlets kicked off a speech given by Mr. Xi at a party seminar, while another piece featured classical literary descriptions used in an article in a Communist Party magazine under his byline Explained.

The government has strict rules about which social media accounts and websites can post articles and photos of leaders like Mr. Xi. Young censor Spends their workdays blocking and removing links that contain pictures of leaders, even if that material supports the government. In other words, ordinary Chinese do not even have the right to post pictures of Mr. Xi, much less criticize them.

Those who dare to criticize him face severe punishment. A retired businessman and an influential social media personality, Ren Xiciang was silenced in early 2016 on a Chinese online platform following criticism of Mr Xi. The instructions The Chinese news media should serve the party. He was Sentenced After writing 18 years in prison last year Essay Mr. Xi’s response to the coronovirus outbreak was significant.

Chinese Internet companies conduct their censorship, but they do so out of fear for them by Beijing officials. Last year, ifeng.com, a news portal, was Punished To run original content about coronavirus outbreaks. Under Chinese regulations, these websites cannot produce original news content.

According to national internet regulators, websites and regulators in December Processed More than 13 million items are considered illegal and unhealthy, an 8 percent increase from a year earlier. Of those, six million were processed by Weibo.

For those reasons, many Chinese are dwarfed by the idea that private companies like Twitter and Facebook have the power to reject a sitting president.

“When Twitter banned Trump, it was a private platform refusing to serve the president,” a Weibo user named Jichuangsuijiji wrote in an attempt to explain the distinction. “When Weibo prohibits you, it is executing government guidelines to censor a person’s speech.”

Some Chinese dissidents and liberal intellectuals oppose the ban because they faced harsh censorship in China or because they support Mr. Trump, whom they see as strict as the Communist Party.

“, Twitter and Facebook allow publicity from the Global Times and the People’s Daily, and even today, they went to war with their own president by stopping their expression,” Ai Weiwei, a disgruntled artist, deployment of In Chinese on Twitter. He was famous online in China, harassed by police and confined to his home by authorities before fleeing.

“Freedom of expression,” Mr. Ai said, “is a farce and nothing more.”

Kuang BiaoA political cartoonist from the southern city of Guangzhou has closed several Weibo accounts and made several cartoons, which were revealed last year about Li Wenliang, Wuhan’s doctor, by police to share information about the coronovirus He was silent. . In Cartoon, Dr. Lee was wearing a barbed wire mask.

But when Mr. Kuang made two cartoons to express his displeasure over Mr. Trump’s ban, China’s censors did nothing. In one of them, President Trump’s mouth was ruthlessly sewn. In another, Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg is portrayed as China’s first emperor Qin Shi Huang, a ruthless tyrant who burned books and killed scholars more than 2,000 years ago.

As of Tuesday evening, the first had viewed more than 170,000 times on a short video site called Doyin, a sister site of TeakTalk.

“Everyone deserves freedom of expression,” Mr. Kuang said. “It is a sacred human right.” He said he is a strong supporter of President Trump, who, he believes, is “a man who serves the people with all sincerity.”

Some people in China have rejected the assertion that those who defend Mr. Trump’s freedom of speech are victims of very bad forms of censorship.

A former journalist who usually goes by the pen name Xiao Shu, Chen wrote, “Sheep that can be eaten at any time by a tiger are angry that the tiger has been put in a cage”.

On his account on WeChat, the popular Chinese social media platform, Mr. Chen wrote that a powerful leader like President Trump has a lot of responsibilities, including the outcome of his speech. Mr. Chen is often censored and harassed by state security officials he writes online.

Journalist Zhao Jing, known as anti-Michael Jha, is surprised why Chinese Trump supporters so enthusiastically defended his freedom of expression. Mr. Trump has the White House, executive order and Fox News, writing: “What else do you want that they have freedom of expression?”

China’s censors do not appear to agree. He was a renowned law professor at Weifang, Peking University, Mr. Wrote a long post on WeChat supporting the restrictions on Trump. The article has since disappeared.

“This content has violated the rules,” said a message with a red exclamation mark where the article was once posted, “so it cannot be seen.”

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