China’s Twitter Users Express Concerns About Chen’s Appointment

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China’s Twitter Users Express Concerns About Chen’s Appointment
MaoNo / Pixabay

Twitter appointed Kathy Chen as its first managing director for China last week, and Chinese users don’t seem to like it. Many even expressed concerns on Twitter in regards to Chen’s appointment, as she has a background with the country’s military and state security apparatus.

Are the concerns justified?

Chinese users are concerned about their freedom of speech on the social media platform as Chen has past links to the Chinese government. The Chinese government exerts strict control over what can be said on social media platforms. Though Twitter is blocked in the country, the micro-blogging site is a great social media platform for Chinese people to freely express themselves in their native language, especially for those living outside China.

In a blog, He Qinglian, a prominent overseas-based Chinese political activist, said, “Twitter has vast amounts of users’ data. Given that U.S. tech firms have in the past kowtowed to China, and given the military background of Kathy Chen, it’s only reasonable for the Chinese users of Twitter to be worried about the future.”

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