China: Netizens starving, no more rice talk!

Since July 8, the Chinese rival of Twitter, Fanfou has been suspended. Up till now, Fanfou's founder Wang Xing has only clarified that the website's “maintenance” has nothing to do with Internet content provider (ICP) license. As the date of its suspension is soon after the Xinjiang riot and has not yet made any public statement telling the users when its service would be restored, many believe that the website has been harmonized for political reason.

Fanfou(飯否)in Chinese means: Have you eaten (rice) yet? It is the most common greeting in Chinese-speaking world. The website is now one of the the most popular microblogging platform in China. Founded in 2008, the website's features are similar to Twitter. It also adopts the same API (Application programming interface) as Twitter. In addition, it is more powerful than Twitter as it is connected to local mobile phones and QQ online chatting devices.

Fanfou users were very frustrated. Cynthia asked:


Who can tell me what happened? Two days ago (July 7), I couldn't post any message in Fanfou. Yesterday (July 8), I could not even open the website. Up till now, nothing has been restored yet… What has happened? Now I find out that I am so dependent on Fanfou, without the tool, I feel so sad and empty. There is no where I can utter meaningless words, life becomes so hard.

A chill summer day has been waiting for the website to restore its service, now the blogger wonders if the system maintenance will be lasted forever:







The Fanfou that has accompanied me for many important moments of our lives…
Come to think of it, my heart still hurt.
It just vanished without saying good bye.
In July 8, the website had posted a message: system maintenance until July 10.
I was glad that it was temporarily suspended. My exam would be finished on 10th, and Fanfou would be back to service, wasn't that great?
I could never imagine that this system maintenance had become forever.

Meredith Yan wants to have “rice” :


飯被和諧了好多天 說好十号晚上開的 昨天晚上大家都在刷飯否

我連曾哥的演唱都沒好好聽 但是終究沒盼開我的飯


想念我的話癆朋友们 連死人一樣被庄主注水的飯否扣扣機器人也不亮了

我 要 開 飯

My lovely Fanfou, when will you be back?
Fanfou has been harmonized for many days. It was announced that the service would be restored on 10th of July and last night everyone was reloading the website.
I could not even enjoy the music concert, but my hope for “rice” did not come true.
I guess many rice buckets like me are stilling waiting.
I miss my talkative friends, now that the fanfou API machine no longer gives out any signal.
I – want – my – rice

Tumblelogs pointed out that many Chinese netizens are forced to upgrade their technology skill for getting over the Great Fire Wall:

總的來看,自從飯否變成廚餘之後,大宗用戶除流向嘀咕、嘰歪之外,Twitter 和 Plurk 也多出了不少簡體字內容,顯見「翻牆」已然成為新一代的中國國技 ^^

Soon after Fanfou was turned into kitchen leftover dregs, many users had moved to and In Twitter and Plurk, there are more and more content written in simplified Chinese. It is obvious that “getting over the wall” has become the new generation's skill ^^.


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