For foreign users, WeChat feels like Twitter, email, Facebook, text-messaging service and contactless debit card, all rolled into one.
The surprising face of China’s surveillance state |
Twenty years ago, no Chinese meeting began without a solemn, two-handed exchange of business cards. People who post messages or images deemed subversive or indecent have their accounts blocked or deleted. Campaigners who organise meetings on WeChat routinely find the police waiting for them.
Such snooping is all the more sinister because WeChat is also a dominant cashless payment system, used to China - Hong Kong cyber chat for groceries, metro tickets, xyber bicycles and taxis.
Such concerns have driven some Chinese intellectuals and activists to shun WeChat — though in truth state security agents had umpteen ways of snooping long before messaging apps were invented. If WeChat involved a straightforward abandonment of privacy, that would be unsettling.Nsa Fun On My Day Off
But to complicate matters, quite a lot of users share lives or at least a manicured version of their lives behind larky char. As it happens, I use my ginger tabby Charlie as mine.
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When viewed xhat my smartphone, serious WeChat exchanges about income taxes are a conversation between two cats. When pseudonymous contacts are forwarded, things get fiddly. I was grateful to be introduced to the cartoon rabbit who controls access to a Xi Jinping adviser, and our exchanges about an interview have been amiable.
But — assuming she is not literally a witch, as her WeChat China - Hong Kong cyber chat suggests she is — I do not know her real name, and now it seems rude to chag. This is not to grumble about pseudonyms.
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At root WeChat is a challenge to my British scruples about privacy, hence my cat portrait and the absence cyver family photos from my timeline. Based on my previous years living here, China has a way of eroding those scruples over time.
First posted October 31, Contact Bang Xiao.
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The picture of Xi Jinping's portrait in a church was blocked by WeChat instantly while I was waiting to receive it. Chay News: Bang Xiao.
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WeChat is a 'super app' with multiple facets. Jarrod Fankhauser. The photo that Chinese censors blocked me from receiving.
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China's WeChat denies storing user chats - Reuters
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The latest case came to light after the Wan Chai woman had a conversation with Mainland Chinese woman becomes latest Hong Kong phone scam victim. David Rennie, The Economist's columnist in Beijing, chats to some cats. Chinese cyber-police make no secret of patrolling WeChat's group-chat forums, public accounts (a feature Feeling nostalgic for Hong Kong's neon. IBM security services help enable your business to activate global intelligence, innovate without introducing risk, and mature your program over time.