Chinese New Year without Firecrackers is like Christmas without Gifts #thisweekinweibo

Imagine Christmas without gifts. Hard to picture? That’s just the scenario that’s unfolding in China as pollution worsens and Chinese New Year draws closer.

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The official weibo account of state broadcaster CCTV News proposed that people reduce or avoid fireworks this Chinese New Year. They gave these reasons:

  1. Fireworks have toxic chemicals which can harm your eyes, nose and lungs.
  2. Fireworks cause smog which pollutes the air. Last year, the PM2.5 exceeded 1000 in Beijing on Chinese New Year’s Eve.
  3. The danger of explosions.
  4. The noise is annoying.
  5. Last Chinese New Year, used fireworks resulted in more than 1000 tons of rubbish in Beijing.  

Setting off fireworks during Chinese New Year has been a tradition for thousands of years. The sound of the firecrackers means getting rid of bad things in the past year and bringing good luck in the new year. That’s why some people find it hard to accept CCTV’s proposal, arguing that without fireworks, Chinese New Year is meaningless and boring.

Some netizens argued that factories, not fireworks, cause air pollution. However, others agreed with the points made about danger, noise and pollution. Some suggest the government should encourage the development of environmentally-friendly fireworks instead of inhibiting the tradition. 

Here’s what else is grabbing attention on the Sinosphere, this week in weibo. 

1. Round Face Competition #圆脸大赛#

A debate of if round face looks prettier or sharp face. Take photos of yourself if you have a round face and enter the competition for the prettiest round face.

2. Let the Red Envelope Fly #让红包飞#

As Chinese New Year is approaching, one billion red envelopes are ready to grab on Weibo! By retweeting or commenting the related post, you go into the prize draw. Weibo has collaborated with big corporations to give away prizes such as Taobao vouchers, iPads, Peugeots (!) etc. More than 225 million netizens have participated in this campaign.

3. Say No to Fireworks #拒绝烟花爆竹# 

see above

4. My idol is a Warm Guy #我的偶像是暖男#

Warm Guy definition: men (or boy) who are positive and make people feel warm. They don’t need to be handsome but their smiles make people feel comfortable. Netizens listed their warm guy idols and give reasons why they are warm.

5. Spring Festival Gala Program List  #春晚节目单#

The year of horse is approaching, the annual Spring Festival Gala had a rehearsal last week. Among the various programs and celebrities, which program do you expect to watch the most? 

6. iPartment Season 4 #爱情公寓4#

This sitcom is considered as Chinese version of Friends. Season 4 was in the air last week. iApartment fans waited two years after the season 3. This season is told to be the final season. A vote of whether i-fans want to watch more or not is going on on Weibo.

7. Korean Annual Goddess Competition #韩国2013年度女神#

Who is your Korean Goddess among the 10 selected female actresses? Because Korean dramas have been very popular in China, netizens respond well to such vote.

8. I want a Meitu Phone 1C #我想要美图手机1C#

Meitu has traditionally developed mobile phone software for beautifying photos, but now they’ve developed their own phone, specially made to create the best selfies. Follow Meitu Phone on Weibo, upload a selfie with the topic #I want a Meitu Phone 1C#, you have a chance to win one. The campaign will last for 10 days and pick up a winner each day. (Meitu Phone is designed to take better photos, especially for people who like selfie)

9. Yang Mi Is Pregnant #杨幂怀孕#

Yang Mi (a very famous actress in Mainland China) recently married to a Hong Kong actor. They had the wedding in Bali Island two weeks ago. Although many people spotted that Yang Mi was pregnant but she didn’t confirm it until now. They said they followed the Chinese tradition that pregnancy should be kept within the family in the initial 3 months before telling other people.

10. Ren Zhiqiang Let the Red Envelop Fly #任志强让红包飞#

Ren Zhiqiang, CEO of Huayuan Property, is very famous in China and a very active figure on Weibo. He recently wrote an autobiography and to promote the book, he created this campaign. 

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