Chinese flood Obama's Google+ page
27 February 2012, 15:11
Beijing - Hundreds of Chinese have flooded US President Barack Obama's
Google+ page, apparently taking advantage of a glitch in China's
censorship system to post about human rights and green cards.
- the US internet giant's social networking site - has been unavailable
in China since it was launched in 2011, apparently blocked by the
nation's strict censorship system, widely dubbed "the Great Firewall of
But over the past few days, Chinese web users say they
have unexpectedly managed to get onto the site, and have decided to
concentrate their presence on Obama's page.
"Many people don't
understand the meaning why all Chinese are coming here. We envy American
people their democracy and freedom!" one user said in English under
Obama's latest posting about his campaign's bumper stickers.
comments centre around freedom of expression and human rights, as well
as more mundane issues such as how to get US green cards.
are not barbaric people, we are just suppressed," one netizen wrote,
while others called on the US president to "come and liberate China".
is hard to prove if all those commenting are from China, but most write
in simplified Mandarin characters - used in the mainland as opposed to
Hong Kong - and expressions are similar to those found on the nation's
It is also difficult to determine what glitch in the Firewall they are taking advantage of.
Sunday, Google+ appeared to be available in China on some people's
mobile devices but not on fixed computers - a fact confirmed by some
users on Obama's page.
Others in China, however, were still
unable to access the site, which remained blocked along with Facebook,
Twitter and YouTube on their mobiles.
Some netizens urged Obama
to help free activists such as blind lawyer Chen Guangcheng, who is
currently under house arrest, or Liu Xiaobo, the jailed Nobel Peace
Many of those posting comments also enquired about
green cards - US permanent residency certificates - asking Obama to send
them one along with his campaign stickers.
One called on the US president to join China's ruling Communist Party.
will give you a big red flower, which you can wear on your chest, and
honourably give you a party certificate (completely free membership for
the first year)," said the online user, named Duke Dai.