In internet slang, “rushing the tower” is when someone posts controversial opinions or comments, despite being aware that it will likely be censored. This could result in severe consequences, such as having their account deleted or even being detained. The phrase originated from the language used in multiplayer online battle arena (MOBA) video games. A recent post from the WeChat account @冲破黎明前的黑暗 (“Breach the darkness before dawn” in English) is a perfect example of this type of post.
The author of an essay titled “Rise Up, Bloggers Who Refuse to be Enslaved!” speaks out against censors who delete posts without specifying the reasons. Using “they” as a symbol for those in power, the author suggests that censorship of the truth can only be attributed to three reasons: 1. Guilt and fear of being exposed. 2. Wrongdoings and fear of criticism. 3. Plans for wrongdoing and fear of being exposed by the people. The essay accurately captures the determination of Chinese internet users to challenge censorship, regardless of the consequences. CDT has translated parts of the essay, which has now been censored, showcasing the courage of both well-known and unknown Chinese writers in the face of censorship.
For freelance writers, it is common to have our essays censored. Our accounts may also be closed and we may face visits from law enforcement for informal discussions.
I can assure you that all three of my recent essays were censored for “violations.” Every word and punctuation mark used was based on objective truth. Therefore, the censorship was not due to any flaws in the essay’s construction or an error in exposing the truth. Instead, it was censored because it disrupted the comfort of those in power. As self-serving creatures, maggots may have felt threatened by the essay and its challenge to their way of life. Alternatively, it may have jeopardized the cushy positions of some maggots, who, being inherently unintelligent, saw it as disrespect to their ancestors.
As conscientious writers, those who have a strong concern for society and the well-being of individuals, we are faced with three significant “griefs”:
If an essay cannot be published, the truth contained within it remains unrevealed.
When an essay that was published is quickly erased without any evidence, it can leave one vulnerable to potential consequences.
When the truth is exposed and called a “gossip,” and the author is blamed for causing conflicts and causing problems and punished by being sent to a “small dark room.”
I have long held the belief that writers in our time are bestowed with the greatest gifts of the written word, independent thinking, and free expression. These gifts are deserved by all writers of our time.
Why are posts censored? Why are those who bring attention to issues eliminated?
I think there are only three possible explanations.
They have committed wrongdoing and are afraid of being exposed to the public.
“They are making a mistake and are afraid of receiving criticism from the public.”
They are plotting to commit wrongdoing and are afraid of being exposed by the public.
There are individuals who may not be well-known or have a high social status, but possess a strong sense of care for their country and its citizens. They are willing to endure great sacrifices in order to uncover the truth, despite facing constant challenges. These brave individuals pay a heavy cost to reveal wrongdoing and reveal the true nature of evil to the public.
The essay was originally censored on WeChat, but it was later reprinted on the independent blog “Red Song Society,” which is known for publishing works that praise Mao and Marx despite occasional disapproval from the Chinese Communist Party. The Economist covered the site in August 2022.
The Red Song Society is known for its extreme support of Mao Zedong and Marxism, surpassing even that of most Communist Party members. It has been in operation for over ten years as a privately owned website and active on various social media platforms. The society vehemently criticizes capitalism and its rise in China, while glorifying the late dictator with unwavering praise. Their homepage bears the handwritten motto, “Sing red songs; promote righteous ways.”
Websites that align with Neo-Maoist ideology, along with those operated by less extreme nationalists, are often beneficial for the party. They can spread its message, particularly its critiques of the Western world. The Neo-Maoist sites also demonstrate that the party’s original principles still have a following (although the Red Song Society’s Weibo account, similar to Twitter, has fewer followers than the US embassy’s visa section). For officials, the rise of Neo-Maoist dissatisfaction is likely unwelcome.
The neo-Maoist group is aware that the government closely monitors their activities. In 2012, some of their preferred online platforms were briefly shut down, likely due to their backing of Bo Xilai, a pro-communist politician who was competing against Xi Jinping, the future leader of China at the time. Bo was arrested and convicted of corruption in 2012. As a result, neo-Maoist websites refrain from mentioning him now. [Source]