Kevin (erf_) wrote,
Kevin
erf_

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beat that dead horse! (and then drag it to jail)

From mixcael: A girl from Liaoning Province posts on a Chinese YouTube clone a video in which she talks shit about the victims of the Sichuan earthquake victims. She complains that they're the only things she ever sees on TV these days, that with so many Chinese people out there the country can afford to lose some, that they're poor, that their children are beggars, why don't they just shut up and die, et cetera. Somewhat predictably, the entire Chinese-speaking Internet comes down on her. Hard.

Wow. Just...wow. I have never seen so many people swearing at the same person in so many different accents. Mainlanders, Taiwanese, Hong Kongers, even a few Chinese-Americans...young, old, and everything in between...it's like the entire Chinese diaspora has united, for one brief moment, to call this girl a motherfucker. (Which is literally what they call her--this video in particular ends almost every clause with the phrase "fuck your mother.") In bizarre displays of nationalism, YouTube users delivered their litanies of insults while unfurling Chinese flags, wearing Beijing Olympics T-shirts, or dressing as stereotypical Hong Kong mobsters and brandishing weapons. More than a few mainlanders overcame fear of arrest to voice their disgust, turning the camera away from their faces when they spoke so that they could not be identified. For all I know people are still posting video responses, and there's no end in sight. It would be merely funny, and sad, and strangely moving, if not for what happened soon after: she was taken in by the police.

Are you happy now, Internet? You got your fucking wish.

Yes, she was an inconsiderate bitch of the highest degree. Yes, she brought shame upon not only her province, not only the Chinese people, but all the people of the world (to paraphrase one commenter). Yes, to paraphrase another, one cannot be Chinese, and watch this video, and not be offended. But now she is locked away, and you can bet you will never have the opportunity to hear another word of bullshit come out of her mouth again.

There are two things we can take away from this debacle:
1) This is why free speech is important. Disapprove, but defend to the death.
2) Never underestimate the power of angry people in large groups.

(update) Okay, looks like Yahoo News fucked up. The story of her arrest comes from IDG News Service, which cites some blog, which cites this news story attributed to Xinhua. Apparently she hasn't been locked up, or even necessarily arrested, just "detained for questioning" (which could imply anything from a jail sentence to a stern rebuke). Always follow your sources. Still, Chinese Internet people. Chill. You're insulted, I know, but you've yelled at this poor girl enough. She's been shamed in the official government newspaper and her personal information has been posted online by vigilantes. She's eaten her words many times over. You're not going to achieve anything by casting another stone.
Tags: china, crap, internet lynch mob, internet people, politics, wtf
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