Social media large Twitter launched an emoji for the Milk Tea Alliance, a worldwide on-line pro-democracy motion that has united anti-Beijing campaigners in Hong Kong and Taiwan with protesters in Thailand, Myanmar, and past.
Activists welcomed the announcement of the emoji – a white cup set in opposition to a background of three colours representing totally different shades of milk tea in Thailand, Hong Kong, and Taiwan – for the primary anniversary of the motion.
The Milk Tea Alliance sprang from a Twitter conflict that flared after Chinese language nationalists accused a younger Thai actor and his girlfriend of supporting democracy in Hong Kong and Taiwanese independence.
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It’s named after a shared ardour for candy tea drinks within the three locations.
Use of the hashtag peaked once more in February after the army coup in Myanmar, the place protesters utilizing the hashtag rallied regional assist.
“We have seen more than 11 million Tweets featuring the #MilkTeaAlliance hashtag over the past year,” Twitter mentioned in an announcement that pushed the hashtag to among the many high trending in Thailand, Hong Kong, and Taiwan on Thursday.
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Beforehand, Twitter launched emojis for #MeToo and #BlackLivesMatter actions.
The Twitter emoji confirmed international recognition and lent better credibility to the youth motion, mentioned distinguished Thai activist Netiwit Chotiphatphaisal, one of many alliance’s main voices.
“It’s important as it shows the young people fighting for a democracy that the world is with them and they’re making an impact,” Netiwit advised Reuters. “It’s a sign that online activism can go much further.”
Twitter is blocked in China and its obvious endorsement of a motion with a powerful present of opposition to Beijing was unlikely to harm its enterprise, mentioned James Buchanan, a lecturer at Bangkok’s Mahidol College Worldwide School.
“Twitter has plenty to gain by appealing to young people in the Asian markets that are open to them,” he mentioned.