A virus is spreading through Chinese Internet users – they are adding a “Love China” icon to their MSN chat names by the thousands to show support for their country.
The icon, according to a number of blogs, is said to be in response to Western bullying over recent Olympic protests. Over the last weeks thousands of protesters have come out in force as the Olympic torch, destined for China this summer, has traveled through their borders. On a number of occasions the torch has been extinguished, and additional security measures have been taken in cities around the world.
From SushiPanda, linked above:
Over half of my Chinese-Chinese friends on MSN have put the badge on their contact names, in defiance of all the anti-China bullying that they’re undoubtedly reading about in the Chinese newspapers, watching on the Chinese news, and scouring over on the hundreds of blogs and BBS’s peppering China’s cyberscape and devoted to propping up this country’s national pride.
Outsiders are suggesting that the news in China is being censored and that Chinese citizens aren’t getting a balanced view of the reality of the international protests. But whatever the cause, this is a significant showing of Chinese nationalistic behavior, and a sign that they are paying attention to the outside world.