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Mesut Ozil Announces Exit from the German National Team on Weibo

Ozil’s exit from the German team has stirred discussions from Twitter to Weibo.

Chauncey Jung

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Mesut Ozil’s withdrawal from the German national team has not just sparked debates across Europe, but also in China, where Ozil announced his resignation on Sina Weibo.

On July 22, German football player Mesut Ozil issued a lengthy statement on his personal Twitter account, in which he announced his resignation from the national team.

According to his Twitter statement, which was retweeted more than 100,000 times within two days, his resignation comes after the massive renouncement of Ozil after he posted a photo of himself with Turkish President Erdogan, along with him receiving blame for Germany’s disappointing World Cup.

Ozil accused the German football federation, fans, and media, of racism and double standards in the treatment of him as a German soccer player with Turkish roots, writing he would “no longer be playing for Germany at international level whilst I have this feeling of racism and disrespect.”

Ozil, who is of Turkish descent, said he will never wear the German team’s jersey again.

The controversial photo of Erdogan and Mesut was taken at a London event in May earlier this year. Ozil stated that he had met Erdogan previously in 2010, and that the picture was taken with “no political intentions.”

The football player said that he has “two hearts,” “one German and one Turkish,” and that taking a photo with Erdogan was about “respecting the highest office of my family’s country.”

The German football association (DFB) has since responded to Ozil’s allegations of racism, saying they “emphatically reject the DFB being linked to racism.”

 

Taking a picture with Erdogan will always have political implications.”

 

Besides Ozil’s 23+ million followers on Twitter, the popular footballer also has more than 850,000 fans on his official Weibo account, where he also published his recent statement. After a day, it received some thousands of likes, responses and shares, and also became a much-discussed topic on various news accounts on Weibo.

Weibo responses to Ozil’s statement have been mixed: while many Weibo users side with the football player and blamed the Germans for being “racist,” others call Ozil a player who is “not loyal” to Germany and the national team.

“I will always be with you and support you. I hope you can be happy and free from worry,” some Ozil fans commented.

“Stand with Özil❤️❤️❤️Say no to racism,” others wrote.

However, not all Weibo users support Ozil’s position: “This is purely an act of stupidity. Turkey was interfering with the German elections. Taking a picture with Erdogan will always have political implications. Ozil refused to sing the German anthem in the games. He is stepping on two boats. He deserves to be kicked out of the team. That has nothing to do with winning or losing,” a Weibo user named @PlanetDaily wrote, along with other netizens who called out Ozil’s lack of loyalty to the team and country he played for.

“Let’s think about it in the Chinese context: suppose Ozil is a football player from Xinjiang and plays for the Chinese national team. And then all of a sudden he meets Erdogan and takes a picture. He now says that he is proud to be a Turkish rather than a Chinese. What would you think?”, a Weibo user nicknamed “Mao Zedong excerpt always in my hand” wrote.

“Erdogan is the enemy of Europe. He is a dictator purging oppositions in the name of religion. Ozil is wrong in meeting him already. As there are many Turks in Germany there is a deeper political implication for Erdogan to meet with Ozil. As a German national team player, Ozil should recognize this,” a popular comment said.

“He was a hero in 2014, he’s the bad guy in 2018,” another top commenter wrote, referencing to Mesut Ozil’s great success during the 2014 World Cup.

But besides those who support and attack Ozil, there are also many Chinese commenters who feel that there eventually is only one person who profits from Ozil’s football exit, and that it is President Erdogan. Many say that he used the star footballer for his own political strategies.

“Of course it has great impact when a celebrity footballer poses with Erdogan. Football is football, and politics are politics, but this all creates much confusion when a footballer like Ozil poses with a dictatorial ruler,” Weibo user @Kined wrote.

For hundreds of Chinese Ozil fans, however, their love for him has nothing to do with politics: “I will support you no matter what. I will support your decision. Wherever you are, I hope you will be happy.”

By Chauncey Jung and Manya Koetse

Spotted a mistake or want to add something? Please let us know in comments below or email us.

©2018 Whatsonweibo. All rights reserved. Do not reproduce our content without permission – you can contact us at info@whatsonweibo.com.

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Chauncey Jung is a China internet specialist who currently works for an Internet company based out of Beijing. Jung completed his BA and MA education in Canada (Univ. of Toronto & Queen's), and has a strong interest in Chinese trends, technology, economic developments and social issues.

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China Digital

Cybersecurity Experts Warn: Flicking the V-Sign in Photos Could Give Away Your Fingerprint Data

V-sign selfie pictures could disclose personal information about your fingerprints, security experts warn.

Manya Koetse

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Our cameras are getting better, but that’s not always a good thing. Chinese internet security experts warn that peace sign photos could potentially be abused to collect fingerprint data.

The 2019 China Cybersecurity Week was held in Shanghai this week, and made it to the top trending topics on Sina Weibo today.

The topic attracting the attention of millions of Chinese web users is not China’s cybersecurity in general, but one that was discussed during the event, namely the potential privacy risks in making a V-sign on photos.

Chinese internet security experts at the conference warned that people are unaware that they could be giving away personal data information about their fingerprints when sharing photos of themselves making a peace sign.

If the side of the fingertips is facing the camera, and if there is not a lot of space in between the camera and the hand, it would potentially be possible to gather fingerprint data using photo enlargement tools and AI techniques.

Photo by Priscilla Du Preez.

The deputy director of the Shanghai Information Security Industry Association stated that photos displaying a fingertop-facing V-sign taken within 1,5 meter of the camera could potentially disclose 100% of one’s fingerprint information, China Press reports.

A booth at the conference giving information about fingerprint information leaking through V-sign photos. Photo via China Press.

Criminals could reconstruct fingerprint patterns of other people and abuse them in various means – basically wherever fingerprint information is used to confirm people’s identities (e.g. biometric door locks or fingerprint payment scanning).

Besides not disclosing fingerprint information in photos posted online, experts also warn people not to leave fingerprint information at machines without confirming their purpose and legality.

Fingerprint scanning is used for a multitude of purposes in China. Foreigners who arrived in China since 2017 will also be familiar with the policy of collecting foreign passport holders’ fingerprints upon their arrival in the PRC.

On Chinese social media, the topic “Making a V-Sign Could Leak Your Fingerprint Data” is one of the biggest being discussed today. On Weibo, the hashtag has gathered 200 million views at time of writing (#拍照比剪刀手会泄露指纹信息#).

Some commenters advise people on social media to make peace signs with the nail side of the fingers facing the camera. (That gesture, however, is deemed an offensive gesture in some nations.)

The V-sign is often used as a rather non-symbolic or cute gesture across in East Asia.

Although in many Western countries, the symbol is mostly known as the victory sign (“V for Victory”) as used during World War II, it entered mainstream popular culture in Japan since the 1960s and spread to other Asian countries from there.

This Time article explains how the gesture appeared in Japanese manga in the late 1960s, one of them titled V is the Sign (Sain wa ‘V’ / サインはV).

Amid the concerned Weibo users, some are not worried: “It’s ok,” one commenter writes: “Using a Beauty App smoothes out my skin anyway.”

There are also many commenters who are confused about the news, wondering what advanced photo camera quality and AI technique might implicate for future privacy risks concerning face recognition data and iris scanning software (“Should we also close our eyes?”).

Others offer a different solution to the unexpected V-sign issue: “Just flip the middle finger instead.”

By Manya Koetse

The images used in the featured image on this page come from 追星娱乐说.

Spotted a mistake or want to add something? Please let us know in comments below or email us. Please note that your comment below will need to be manually approved if you’re a first-time poster here.

©2019 Whatsonweibo. All rights reserved. Do not reproduce our content without permission – you can contact us at info@whatsonweibo.com

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China Arts & Entertainment

Famous Chinese Nursery Song “One Penny” Inflates to “One Yuan”

One penny becomes one yuan in this children’s song. What’s next – changing it to QR codes?

Manya Koetse

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Famous Chinese children’s song “One Penny” (一分钱) has changed its penny to a Chinese yuan ($0.15).

The lyrics to the song are now published online and in children’s books with the different lyrics, Chinese news platform City Bulletin (@都市快报) reports on Weibo.

The altered text in a children’s book.

The classic song, in translation, says:

I found a penny on the street,
And handed it over to Uncle Policeman.
The Uncle Policeman took the penny,
And nodded his head at me.
I happily said: “Uncle, goodbye!

The song, by Chinese composer Pan Zhensheng (潘振声), is known throughout China. It came out in 1963.

Apparently, in present-day China, nobody would go through so much hassle for a penny anymore, and so the text was altered (although it is very doubtful people would go through the trouble for one yuan either).

The penny coin (0.01) in renminbi was first issued in 1957, and is somewhat rare to come across these days. “It’s probably even worth more than one yuan now,” some netizens argue.

Chinese media report that composer Pan Zhensheng said the song is just an innocent children’s song, and that it should not be affected by price inflation. Sina News also quoted the composer in saying that changing the text is “not respectful.”

Although some Chinese netizens think the change in the song is just normal modern development, others do not agree at all. In Hangzhou, some say, all you can find on the streets nowadays is QR codes rather than coins. Surely the song should not incorporate those new developments either?

Some commenters on Weibo say the song would never be realistic in China’s current cashless society anyway: “Kids nowadays are not finding cash money at all anymore!”

By Manya Koetse

Spotted a mistake or want to add something? Please let us know in comments below or email us. Please note that your comment below will need to be manually approved if you’re a first-time poster here.

©2019 Whatsonweibo. All rights reserved. Do not reproduce our content without permission – you can contact us at info@whatsonweibo.com

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