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China: Not Tweeting a Revolution

It seems premature, Anonymous speculated on February 20, for the Jasmine Revolution to spread to China. Although seen by some as a joke from the onset, Chinese Twitter users tweeted furiously for two weeks and created a stir the main result of which has been numerous arrests, assaults on journalists, and the 50 Cent Party‘s expansion onto Twitter. References to the Kaohsiung Incident have stopped.

So, are the people who feigned to stand up to the all-powerful Chinese authorities to demand freedom and democracy crazy, irrelevant, or just cowardly? Below are a number of tweets which represent much of the discussion leading up February 20, the first day of China's Twitter-based ‘Jasmine Revolution’.

February 16, before the initial anonymous call to gather had been made:
7:34 PM Feb 16th

Research from last year discovered that Twitter has already become one of the main tools authorities use to maintain rule, collecting comments and information about activities from dissidents and social activists. Which is why Twitter revolutions and rule through Twitter are two sides to Twitter politics.
10:52 PM Feb 16th

Post-Egypt, China's activists and social movements face a tough and tricky environment. The Chen Guangcheng incident, banning beggars, these are just the beginning.

February 18, when the anonymous post had already appeared but was yet to receive much notice:
@myen 民主只需要8岁的智慧,另外需要不精明不世故,不被封建古文化污染的年轻的心,我想中国的民主可能最能依靠的是青年人了。据说90后很自私,我想自私是民主可能发生的最好原因.民主就是有效率的自私.
1:38 AM Feb 18th

Even an 8-year-old can understand democracy. You don't need to be clever or sophisticated, but you do need a young heart untainted by ancient feudal culture. The best chance for democracy in China rests with its young people. They say the Post-90s generation is selfish, but I think selfishness is one of the best reasons why democracy can occur. Democracy is just efficient selfishness.
5:21 PM Feb 18th

Why do I get the feeling that the Jasmine revolution was set up by the domestic security department as a way to up their funding?

February 19:
12:04 PM Feb 19th

Is there a Jasmine gathering tomorrow? Who initiated it? This all seems reckless and out of nowhere; at least we should first go storm the TV stations to confuse people, for better effect.
12:05 AM Feb 19th

Sina Weiboer: The government will shoot, but that doesn't necessarily mean the people will kneel. However if the people do kneel, the government will definitely shoot.
12:11 AM Feb 19th

A government which decides to shoot doesn't worry about injustice, it only worries about how to slaughter everyone.
12:15 PM Feb 19th

Authorities’ response to news of the “Chinese Jasmine Revolution”, attacking Boxun, is totally useless. Even if they were to just let the news spread, everyone on the streets tomorrow will still all be shoppers.
12:25 PM Feb 19th

The Chinese public today isn't anywhere close to having the ideological foundation required for a “Jasmine revolution”. Chinese university students today can't even be bothered to cross the street to avoid the canteen food they won't stop complaining about, so forget about any revolution. Shouting “revolution” only hurts the dissident community which was already lacking in credibility to begin with.
1:16 PM Feb 19th

To be honest, this so-called Jasmine revolution is looking more and more like a funding fishing expedition.

1:30 PM Feb 19th
For the domestic security department, launching a revolution propaganda blitz would not only up their income, but they could just as easily turn and claim ‘crying wolf’ tactics, that repetition of fake revolution news would make reactionaries stop believing all information about any revolution.
什么 茉莉花革命 啊,又是山寨版。抄袭国外模式,抄完google、facebook、youtube、twitter,现在又抄groupon、quora,连人家诺贝尔和平奖和茉莉花革命也要抄,哪个热闹抄哪个。什么时候抄全民选举啊。
1:52 PM Feb 19th

What ‘Jasmine revolution'? Just more shanzhai. People copying everything from overseas, Google, Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, now even Groupon, quora. People are even plagiarizing the Nobel Peace prize and the Jasmine Revolution. Whatever gets any attention gets copied. How long until we start plagiarizing nationwide elections?
2:09 PM Feb 19th

Online mobilizations like this Jasmine Revolution should be a regular thing, it doesn't matter if people take to the street or not. The second the call goes online, the CCP gets jumpy, then nervous, then goes into battle mode, then flustered. It should happen every month until the Commies can't calm back down. If it goes on long enough, they'll get used to it and drop their guard, and then it'll be time for the real thing!
4:49 PM Feb 19th

Whether or not a “Jasmine Revolution” will take place in China has nothing to do with the ideological foundation of the public, but whether or not they fundamentally believe in what it stands for. We're a faithless nation, there will be no “revolution”, only “uprising”. Revolutions are when people with fundamental beliefs make strong demands for change in the social system. Revolutions, on the other hand, take place when people revolt because they can't feed themselves or keep themselves warm. You only get to call the shots once you seize political power.
5:01 PM Feb 19th

Any government which points its guns at its own people is already a ghost.
6:00 PM Feb 19th

Last night I thought for a bit about where I would be if there were a revolution or if the economy were to collapse. My conclusion is that there isn't a single thing in it for me. For those of us who can't just up and leave the country, it'd be even worse.
7:38 PM Feb 19th

Tomorrow's “Jasmine Revolution” keeps brewing; one by one, Baidu topic threads keep shutting it down. Though, in doing so, Baidu has led people to go from questioning why to wondering just what Jasmine is all about. Even though I think everything Jasmine so far hasn't been thought through very well, this perhaps isn't necessarily a bad thing.
7:38 PM Feb 19th

I have no idea where Jasmine will blossom, but I do find this a good opportunity to observe authorities’ response of implementing information lockdown measures. Barring shutting off the Internet, what we've seen today is about all they can do.
7:40 PM Feb 19th

So I'm hoping, people with ideas about this thing can try describing using more moderate language, perhaps as a way to get around keyword blocks. For example, instead of ‘Jasmine Day’, they could try something like “a date with Jasmine”. I think people with more imagination can come up with more creative descriptions.
7:51 PM Feb 19th

Nobody knows if China's Jasmine Revolution is about to unfold tomorrow, but just looking at the government's various responses, they definitely are ants in a frying pan now.
8:15 PM Feb 19th

Suddenly, it arrives. Suddenly, it's about to bloom. Suddenly, it's all round us.
有人在拼命论证茉莉花革命不成呢^_^我笑了。 Rt @lihlii2 @noooo0000 茉莉花革命成功已成定局。哈哈,连奴才《明报》都报道了。
8:43 PM Feb 19th

People are frantically trying to rationalize why a Jasmine Revolution won't happen. ^_^ Gotta laugh. RT @lihlii2 @noooo0000: The Jasmine Revolution is a sure thing, even flunky paper Ming Pao has reported on it.
@noooo0000 一个明显的正面效果,是把“革命”这个词,和中共国的现实联系起来了。就算你是反革命,只要谈论革命问题,那就已经是进步了。哈哈
8:50 PM Feb 19th

@noooo0000 One obvious effect has been to make “revolution” a reality for the CCP. Even if you yourself are against the revolution, just discussing the question of revolutions is progress in itself. Haha.
传说中的茉莉花革命,谁看了都像笑话,可是让官方如此恐惧,看来他们之前内心中就已经很恐惧了。RT @zokio: 茉莉溜土共的喜剧效果,堪比2000多年前的烽火戏诸侯,俺像褒姒一般地笑了。
8:54 PM Feb 19th

This rumored Jasmine Revolution, everyone's just treating it like a joke. But with the way it's made authorities so terrified, it appears they've been terrified for quite some time already. RT @zokio: Jasmine sure has had quite a comic effect on the Commies, even has me laughing like the concubine Baosi.
据说警察都累得像小狗一样,都忙不开了。茉莉花革命的玩笑让那些非法占有权利的强盗们恐惧的不得了,他们知道他们手里的权利是根本不应该是他们的, 强盗最怕别人把自己手中的东西又抢走。RT @nuochan: 每个月搞一次茉莉花集结,一年之后警察和国宝就该成我们的人了
8:56 PM Feb 19th

From the sound of it, police must tired like dogs by now, they just can't keep up. This Jasmine Revolution joke has those illegitimate power bandits completely freaked out. They know the authority they hold doesn't belong to them, and the one thing bandits fear most is people snatching things out of their grasp. RT @nuochan: If there was a Jasmine assembly every month, a year from now the police and domestic security agents would be on our side.
9:05 PM Feb 19th

A virtual jasmine flower, scared the crap out of the Party Central Committee.
9:33 PM Feb 19th

The Jasmine Revolution is hot online, I kept thinking it was just another piece of performance art. Then today Jasmine became a banned sensitive keyword. Fine, if the government is taking this so seriously, to not take part now would be a major waste of Stability Office money. Tomorrow I'm definitely going to check it out!
10:01 PM Feb 19th

From the look of it, authorities have responded in two ways: first, by heavily blocking any spread of the news on mainland websites; second, by heavily cracking down on activists. Still waiting to hear if barriers are being set up at sites of the planned locations being spread around.
10:13 PM Feb 19th

The Jasmine F