An average of 70 out of every 10,000 Weibo posts made on July 1 were quickly deleted, according to researchers at the University of Hong Kong. Photo: Reuters
Hong Kong is apparently becoming the next Tibet or Xinjiang on Sina Weibo, China’s answer to Twitter, in terms of the level of political sensitivity these days.
Politics and business can never be completely separated in this world. If someday Sina Weibo, already listed on the technology-heavy Nasdaq stock market in the United States, fails, then Beijing should be blamed for how the central government indirectly helped to kill one of the country’s biggest business innovations in recent decades.
It is believed that at least 500 Sina Weibo accounts, mostly Hong Kong-based Weibo users, were suspended following the massive pro-democracy July 1 march in the city, which some foreign media described as the worst political crisis in Hong Kong since the 1997 handover from British colonial control to Chinese rule. My colleague William Zheng, the chief editor of SCMPChinese.com and I were among the suspended Weibo users last week.
Politics and business can never be completely separated in this world
Both William and I were given no reason for why our accounts were suddenly suspended. Our account suspensions happened shortly after we posted reports and photos about the July 1 march.
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