Reddit users desperately post support for Taiwan independence for fear of impending censorship byTencent
By: Keoni Everington, Taiwan News, Staff Writer
TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — After news broke that Tencent has made a massive US$150 million investment in the social media site Reddit, many of its users have been hastily posting support for Taiwan’s independence and images of the Tiananmen Square massacre out of fear that the company’s new Chinese masters will demand such content be censored.
On Wednesday (Feb. 6), it was reported that Chinese conglomerate Tencent, which is worth US$427 billion, has invested US$150 million as it leads a Series D fundraising round for the social media website Reddit. Fears quickly spread among various Reddit communities, or subreddits, that content found objectionable by to the Chinese Communist Party could soon be censored, as has been often been the case when Chinese firms took over Western media outlets such as Forbes.
In an attempt to exercise “free speech” one last time before the feared “takeover” by the Chinese behemoth, and perhaps to test its patience, many Redditors (users of the platform) have begun to upload posts in support of Taiwan independence and photos of the Tiananmen Square Massacre in 1989, among other content likely to be censored in China.
The two companies seem like strange bedfellows, as many subreddits, such as r/Taiwan and r/China often contain content which is critical of the Chinese government, and the site has been blocked by China’s Great Firewall since last year. [FULL STORY]