UPDATED JUNE 23, 2011: Who’s Afraid of Ai WeiWei?

The Chinese government is, that’s who.

Read More:
NPR
Language Log

UPDATE: Here’s the Salty Droid’s thoughts on this whole thing. Chinese government oppression = winning! Chinese people’s freedoms = not so much.

UPDATE: Introducing the Ai WeiWei Fuck Off Bookmarklet! This will at the very lease provide some release. Haven’t you ever wanted to give a website the finger? This one perhaps…

UPDATE – JUNE 1, 2011: Cuban artist Geandy Pavon wasn’t content with just telling websites to fuck off with a silly little bookmarklet, so he took it one step further and told the Chinese to fuck off by projecting Ai WeiWei’s face on the Chinese consulate in NYC. Awesome balls-of-steel move by Pavon found via the Salty Droid. Spread the word.

UPDATE – The New York Times is reporting that Ai WeiWei has been released on “bail.” He will most likely still face charges of tax evasion, but it seems like the Chinese have bowed to international pressure. Sorry to all the other dissidents currently being held and tortured.

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Author: Joe McVeigh

I'm a linguist who researches email marketing. I also teach at the University of Jyväskylä in Finland. I write about language and linguistics on my blog, ...And Read All Over, and I write about language and marketing on my other blog, Email and Linguistics.

2 thoughts on “UPDATED JUNE 23, 2011: Who’s Afraid of Ai WeiWei?”

  1. Joe! How did I not know about this blog?! It's insightful and funny and you should have told me about it. I've been here for a while now, I really enjoy it. And to this latest posting: can you believe the NPR piece didn't mention or even ask about the parallel to the Albee play "Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?" I guess it could be a little lit. heavy for the political scope of a short segment, and obviously both are riffs on "the big, bad" but it's a political play, and I strongly suspect that girl knew of it full well.

  2. Hi, Len! Sorry for not telling you about my secret blog – secret because no one reads it;) Thanks for the praise, though.I couldn't believe it either that neither of the articles I linked to made the connection to the Albee play. I don't think it's too lit. heavy to make that jump. The phrase "Who's afraid of…" is common knowledge enough for anyone to know that it comes from literature/culture. A reporter should make the connection and it certainly deserves mention. As for the graffiti, I think it's a perfect phrase to put on that picture, whether she knew of the parallels or not. Just spot on. By the way, are you going to see WieWei's exhibit in New York?

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