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China’s Twitter-like platform Weibo says it banned 2,000 accounts and deleted more than 71,000 posts, following online abuse of Olympic athletes

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  • Weibo has banned accounts and deleted posts following targeted online attacks of Olympians.
  • Weibo did not name specific athletes, however as Insider reported, US-born skater Zhu Yi has been the target of much abuse.  
  • “Do not sarcastically attack athletes because of accidental mistakes,” Weibo advised.

China’s Twitter-like platform Weibo says it has banned more than 2,000 accounts and removed at least 71,000 posts, following online attacks targeting Winter Olympic athletes.

Some social media users have been “causing trouble, attacking athletes with insults and spreading false information,” the platform said in a post on Tuesday, adding that it would continue to monitor the site for similar posts.

Although Weibo did not specify which athletes had been targeted, the move comes after the widely reported social media abuse heaped on US-born figure skater Zhu Yi, who fell while competing for China in two events earlier this week.

Online comments were brutal as many users faulted her for costing the host country medals in the sport.

But Weibo has called on users to be “less harsh and more understanding.”

“Do not sarcastically attack athletes because of accidental mistakes,” it said in a separate post on Wednesday. “Cathartic and emotional words will only bring more pressure to the athletes.”

“Watch each game with a rational, sincere, and inclusive attitude, and give the warmest applause and the highest respect to every athlete for their best efforts,” it added.

After Zhu stumbled in her first event on Sunday, Weibo hashtags including “Zhu Yi has fallen” were quickly censored, but not before gaining more than 200 million views in just a few hours.

The Chinese government has been making efforts to “clean up” social media platforms and maintain public order online, pushing content platforms to more closely manage and watch their users.

In September last year, 14 Chinese online content platforms, including Weibo and Douyin, China’s version of TikTok, signed a collective declaration to enforce “self-discipline” in the country’s cyberspace.

Courtesy By INSIDER

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