Sina Weibo once again removes candle emoticon for June 4 anniversary
To prepare to the 24th anniversary of the Tiananmen Square incident, Sina Weibo has once again removed the candle emoticon from usage.
According to Offbeat China, the candle icon was removed on June 3, for what Sina is calling “re-organizing.”
Though some, like Wall Street Journal Chinese Editor in Chief Yuan Li have found that the candle emoticon is still available on their phones. “Seems like I can still light one on my phone. [Candle][Candle][Candle]” Tea Leaf Nation reported.
The candle is often used on Chinese social media to express sympathy for a tragic event.
Similar to last year, the term “candle” is unsearchable due to relevant regulations and policies.
This year’s censorship policies have also included giving users unhelpful results when searching for terms such as “June 4 incident”.
Still, netizens refuse to be silenced, with many finding other ways to remember those who died.
As translated by Tea Leaf Nation, journalist He Gang wrote:
I remember that year. Passion on fire. History has rolled on for two cycles [in the Chinese calendar]. That year, it happened right before my college entrance exam, and it put a lot of stress on me. One of the popular majors in Peking University ceased enrollment in the aftermath.