Trending searches on Weibo: Plane Crash; Cyber attack; COVID rules
The flight tipped into a deadly dive and didn't respond to air traffic controllers
It has been an emotionally difficult two days in China following the air disaster. Chinese President Xi Jinping has ordered all-out search and rescue efforts after the plane with 132 people aboard crashed in south China on Monday afternoon.
The People's Daily, the Xinhua News Agency and the China Media Group all did live webcast at the site of the crash on Douying (the Chinese equivalent to TikTok) throughout the day.
Today's trending topics on Twitter-like Chinese social media platform Sina Weibo is mainly about the plan crash, the cyber attack and China's COVID-19 related rules. Please note that the top 10 topics were not selected by Ginger River, but from the report dynamically displayed on Weibo.
Tuesday's top 10 trending searches on Weibo as of 7:00 p.m. (1100 GMT):
1.Battery life of aircraft black box is about 30 days
2.Evidence of U.S. use of top cyber weapons against China was aired by Chinese cybersecurity firm 360
3.China temporarily includes COVID-19 antigen tests in medical insurance
4.It's raining at the site of the plane crash
5.Couple sold pork as beef after dyeing it and made more than 800,000 yuan (about 126,000 U.S. dollars) profit from it
Follow-up: The couple were sentenced to a fine and imprisonment.
6.A young auxiliary police officer carried a girl who choked for a nut and dashed to the hospital -- video
7. A note with wishes for peace and safety was found at the site of the plane crash
8.Is the weakening of the desire to share a sign of the beginning of couples breaking up?
Explainer: It's an online discussion about the ending of a relationship
9.Go to China's Henan Province to try the local high carbohydrate diet
Explainer: A blogger named "Tianxiu bot" posted a video about the food in Henan, sharing ideas to try delicious local high carbohydrate food
10.The Chinese badminton team reported a few positive COVID-19 cases -- Xinhua
Follow-up: The Chinese team has withdrawn from the 2022 YONEX Swiss Open.
#1，#4，#7 Passenger plane carrying 132 crashes in south China
The China Eastern Airlines Boeing 737 aircraft, which departed from Kunming and was bound for Guangzhou, crashed into a mountainous area near the Molang village in Tengxian County in the city of Wuzhou at 2:38 p.m., causing a mountain fire.
Rescuers are making all-out efforts to retrieve the black boxes of a passenger plane with 132 people aboard that crashed in south China's Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region Monday afternoon, an official with the Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC) said Tuesday night.
The plane was severely damaged and the investigation is very difficult, Zhu Tao, head of CAAC aviation safety office, told a press briefing.
Based on known information, the authorities do not yet have a clear clue to the cause of the passenger plane crash, the official said.
Boeing’s shares fell 3.6% Monday as investors worried about fallout from the crash and subsequent investigation. The slide was the biggest in two weeks and nearly doubled its 2022 decline. While the China Eastern plane was not a 737 Max, the latest accident is renewing questions about the planemaker’s safety culture as the Max nears a possible return to commercial flights in China.
The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) said on Monday it had appointed a senior air safety investigator as a U.S. accredited representative to the investigation of the crash of a China Eastern Airlines (600115.SS) Boeing 737-800 near Wuzhou, China.
#2. Evidence of U.S. use of top cyber weapons against China was aired by Chinese cybersecurity firm 360
Chinese cybersecurity experts for the first time disclosed a typical weapon used by US National Security Agency (NSA) to target China. The weapon can monitor and hijack users' social media accounts, emails and communication information, the Global Times learned from a leading cybersecurity company exclusively on Tuesday.
In early March, 360 provided a series of evidence to prove that the NSA targeted the communications industry and other key areas, and hundreds of millions of citizens around the world had no safe place to hide their private and sensitive information, just like "running naked." China, as one of NSA's top targets, suffered millions of attacks.
According to a report published by 360 on Tuesday, Quantum attack is a cyber hijacking tool that the NSA especially designed for attacking users on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Amazon and other websites. Users of Chinese social media applications such as QQ, developed by Tencent, have also been a key target.
In addition, as the Pekingnologist noted, the Chinese cybersecurity firm summarized its observation on February 26 on recent but carefully planned cyberattacks against Ukraine, to create chaos, hinder communication, debilitate Ukrainian government, civil society, and military targets, noting massive fishing attacks against Ukrainian users since 2021 year end by suspected APT groups.
#3.China temporarily includes COVID-19 antigen tests in medical insurance
Expenses occurred at designated grassroots medical institutions should be settled pursuant to existing provisions of social pooling units while the cost for antigen testing reagents at designated retail pharmacies can be covered by individual accounts, said the National Healthcare Security Administration in a circular issued on Monday.
Is making antigen testing reagents available at retail pharmacies for individuals a sign that China is about to change its "dynamic zero-COVID-19 policy"? Not yet at least.
Liang Wannian, head of the COVID-19 response expert panel under China's National Health Commission, reiterated that it is a must for China to stick to its dynamic zero-COVID approach in the face of mounting anti-epidemic pressure from both at home and abroad, at a press conference Tuesday. -- Xinhua
Ginger River also translated part of a recent CCTV's interview with Liang. The highlights are by Ginger River.
Question: Many foreign countries have abolished their epidemic control policies, so why can't we do the same? How long will China's current epidemic prevention and control policy last?
Liang: We mainly rely on vaccine immunization to enhance resistance and build up the immune barrier. Some countries choosing to 躺平 "lie flat", which means "skate by", or "quit", have completed two kinds of immunization: one is natural immunity, or herd infection. It can be said that a significant proportion of the population in these countries has been infected with COVID-19. The other one is vaccine immunization.
Liang: In this case, if China also chooses to 躺平 lie flat, and does not adhere to the dynamic zero-COVID-19 policy when the current vaccination rate, especially the full and booster vaccination rate is not high enough to establish a solid immunization barrier, it will inevitably make the large group of elderly and vulnerable people easy to get infected.
Liang: In this case, we have to adhere to the dynamic zero-COVID-19 approach, adhere to our strategy and measures without wavering, and this is also a time window for us. If we can strengthen vaccination, accelerate scientific and technological research and development, including the research and development of drugs and vaccines, I think at some point we may find Omicron has changed again, becoming more mild, and the transmission rate and morbidity become even lower, then that is our best opportunity. So at this stage, we insist that the general strategy and general policy remain unchanged, which should be the best choice and in line with China's anti-epidemic reality.
Explainer: For people who are unfamiliar with 微博热搜 hot search on Weibo, conceptually, the ranking of the hot searches is updated once every minute by calculating the popularity level of a certain topic during a certain time of period (12 hours, for instance). Because Weibo didn't unveil its full algorithm for its hot search ranking, Ginger River cannot give you a perfect answer. Similar situation applies to rankings of WeChat and Douyin.
Disclaimer: Analysis contained in this newsletter reflects the personal views of Ginger River, not those of Xinhua.
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