2014-05-07 17:30:15

On China’s Internet the Bible trumps Mao’s Little Red Book and the Pope tops the Prime Minister

May 07,2014:On China’s internet, the Bible has trumped Mao's Little Red Book, Pope Francis is more popular than Li Keqiang, Jesus tops Xi Jinping, and Christians far outnumber members of the Communist Party. These are the surprising results of an analysis conducted by Foreign Policy on Weibo, the popular Chinese micro-blogging site. A researcher analyzed the flow of words quoted on the site, used by about 300 million Chinese, and compiled a ranking of popularity. There are about 17 million biblical quotations compared to 60 thousand attributable to Chairman Mao. Users who discuss the various Christian churches are 41.8 million, while those who speak of the Communist Party are 5.3 million. In addition, although present every day in the national press, and often also in the international press - President Xi Jinping is mentioned by 4 million: Jesus Christ, much less present in the national media, by 18 million. Similarly, Pope Francis has many more entries than Prime Minister Li Keqiang.
According to Bethany Allen, who led the study, the results "are amazing" but they have a logical explanation, as about 100 thusand Chinese officials in charge of censoring the network "have a big role to play. It is their job to delete anything that may be deemed politically sensitive, so any entry containing the names of top leaders in China is more likely to be deleted in order to avoid controversy".
Source: AsiaNews

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