For the past few days, if you search on Twitter for information about dogs by typing ‘dogs’ into the search box on Twitter you get reams of Chinese uploads of pretty girls. They seem to be dating websites in China but that is a big guess as Google Translate can’t translate the Chinese (which is bizarre). But they manage to manipulate Twitter’s search engine by tweeting phrases such as ‘either dog clear’ or ‘factor dog soon’ or ‘dog blue break’. Random nonsensical phrases containing the word ‘dog’.
Not a big deal except for the fact that it is irritating and that Twitter have not got a handle on this which is very relevant at present as Meta are launching a competitor to Twitter: Threads. Twitter need to improve their search engine to block these abuses of their search engine.
People who search for dog stories and information don’t want to see really useful information masked and blanked out by flirtatious, sexist, misogynistic websites. And it is a little sick to be using dogs in this way as China’s notorious dog meat festival informs us of the generally abusive relationship that they have with dogs.
Threads is Meta’s text-based conversation app linked to Instagram which is owned by Meta. Twitter may sue over their new rival Threads claiming that Meta has stolen intellectual property and mopped up some of Twitter’s employees who were made redundant in large numbers after Musk bought the platform for the inflated price of $44 billion.
It is interesting in that the Chinese administration (CCP) bar the use of Western social media platforms from Chinese citizens. In other words, a Chinese citizen living in China cannot access Twitter but they are finding a way to use Twitter as shown on this page. And I’m told that many Chinese circumvent the government block through a government approved VPN. This also applies to Chinese companies.
VPN stands for Virtual Private Network. The system adds security and anonymity to users when they connect to web-based services and sites. A VPN hides the user’s actual public IP address and “tunnels” traffic between the user’s device and the remote server.
I’m told that the block on Western social media platforms began in 2009. The reason, as I understand it, suppression of free speech in that the Chinese authorities cannot control the content on Twitter and therefore it will lead to outspoken people criticising the ideals of the Communist Party.
I presume that this block on Twitter also applies to other social media platforms used extensively in the West.
Sina Weibo is sometimes referred to as the Chinese version of Twitter Facebook and other social media platforms.
What’s clearly unfair is that Weibo is accessible for most countries outside of China and a user’s local details are good enough to work when registering I believe. I suspect that the uploads to Sina Weibo are carefully moderated.
When you visit the site, it is full of frivolous pap. Nearly all of it is useless nonsense. I understand why; it is all they are allowed to discuss!
I can see some benefits from this. In the past I have told animal advocates tweeting on Twitter that their tweets are not being seen by their target audience namely the Chinese living in China.
Often these tweets are about, for example, the Yulin dog meat festival; a horrendously cruel so-called “festival”. It seems that I am wrong or not entirely correct because some Chinese citizens are managing to see what the rest of the world think about China’s animal abuse and lack of animal welfare laws and regulations.
As mentioned, that is a good thing because there is a very pressing need for well enforced animal welfare laws in the world’s second-largest economy.
There is a slight shift away from what appears to be endemic animal abuse and plain cruelty in China with the sprouting up of animal rights groups and campaigners.
It is a long road to change a culture which appears to find animal cruelty acceptable. Many animal advocates use Twitter. They may be chipping away at this archaic Chinese culture which is desperately out of step with the modern world. It seems that President Xi Jinping supports animal cruelty.