Winnie the Pooh banned by China

Apparently Pooh doesn't just look cute, he also looks politically powerful.

By Yeo Kaiqi | July 17, 2017

If you’re wondering what’s so wrong about Winnie the Pooh that’s driving China up the wall, we’ll just start off by revealing these pictures:

Image via here
Image via here
Image via here

The uncanny resemblance between the adorable pantless bear and Chinese president Xi Jinping could be the reason Winnie the Pooh is getting scrubbed clean online in China.

Over the weekend, many Winnie the Pooh pictures, gifs, stickers, emojis, and even the reference words “Little Bear Winnie” (小熊维尼), which is the name most used by the Chinese of the cartoon character, were reportedly blocked and processed as illegal content on microblogging platform Weibo and social messaging app WeChat.

It is also believed that if a netizen posted any of these online, either a pop-up box with the words “this content is illegal” comes up, or nothing is displayed.

Screenshot via this post

According to Financial Times, the real reason behind the ban remains unknown.

However, it was reported that the crackdown performed on the character was possibly linked to the run-up to the latest Communist party’s congress this coming autumn, where key political appointments will be announced then.

Such actions from the Chinese authorities are not new.

Annually, before the Chinese Communist party congresses begin, there will be certain political actions, as well as inaction, happening within the country that seem to be in alignment with the meeting’s agendas.

In the past, political organisation, corruption cases, and certain political terms on the internet were the target of the Chinese authorities. This time, it looks like the ban on Winnie the Pooh might mean one thing: “Talking about the president” has been added into the list of targeted actions.

Last week, it was also reported that certain Virtual Proxy Network services were and will be blocked by Chinese authorities.

Last month, media regulations in China have also been reportedly tightened.

That said, it remains unclear how widespread the ban on Pooh is. Other Chinese netizens have reacted to the news stating that they were able to post references regarding Winnie the Pooh, except these posts had nothing to do with politics or without any political bent.

Screenshot courtesy of a Chinese netizen and by Yeo Kaiqi

Top image via here

About Yeo Kaiqi

Kaiqi believes she's the reincarnation of ancient China's royalty. When she's not deluded, she behaves like a cat hoping to conquer the internet.

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