“Zhao Ziyang” unblocked on Baidu

The following post by Lang Yaoyuan (郎遥远), the Hangzhou-based director of World Merchants Magazine, was deleted from Sina Weibo sometime before 6:00pm Hong Kong time yesterday, February 29, 2012. Lang Yaoyuan currently has just under 70,000 followers, according to numbers from Sina Weibo. [More on deleted posts at the WeiboScope Search, by the Journalism and Media Studies Centre].

Lang Yaoyuan’s post deals with the as-yet-unexplained unblocking on February 21 of an entry about former premier Zhao Ziyang (赵紫阳) on the Baidu website’s encyclopedia service, Baidu Baike (百度百科). According to some Chinese-language reports outside China, the Baidu page for Zhao Ziyang, a pro-reform figure who was ousted in the aftermath of the Tiananmen crackdown in June 1989, received more than two million visits within one day. The page has since been disabled.

That General Secretary who shed tears for our college students on the square was suddenly unblocked a few days back, and there were 2,16 million views that day. This old man, about whom for so long we could hear nothing, suddenly overnight appears again on the horizon of our awareness. Several million searches can be seen as several million tributes, so late but still not absent. At such a moment I feel how awesome (“NB”) it is to be Chinese. Chinese forget nothing.

The post by Lang Yaoyuan included the following image of Zhao Ziyang:

The original Chinese-language post from Lang Yaoyuan follows:

那位曾在广场对大学生流泪的总书记,前几天突然解禁,当天网络浏览216万次。“一个走得如此荒凉的老人,在这样一个偶然的夜里,又一次静静地出现在你我可以感知的边界。数百万条的搜索,就权当数百万次的注目礼吧,迟到了,却并不缺席。这一刻,感到身为一个中国人的NB。中国人,什么都没有忘记。”

NOTE: All posts to The Anti-Social List are listed as “permission denied” in the Sina Weibo API, which means they were deleted by Weibo managers, not by users themselves.

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