Authorities crack down on Tianjin explosion tweets

Reporting and discussing the Tianjin incident is not exactly forbidden, it’s quite the opposite actually.

Aftermath of the Tianjin explosion in China

As China continues to deal with the aftermath of the Tianjin explosion, which sent hundreds of people to their untimely death, the Asian country’s social media censors are hard at work scrubbing ‘unhealthy’ information from its web.

Reporting and discussing the Tianjin incident is not exactly forbidden, it’s quite the opposite actually. Right now, “Tianjin Explosion Truth” is one of the top trending terms on Sina Weibo, one of the country’s popular social media platforms.

However, certain messages and images are being taken off Weibo and other social networks. Messages that are most likely to get the axe on Weibo – China’s most popular social media platform – are messages that are a call to action, but the focus of the censorship right now seems to be information about the incident, primarily.

One of the messages that was deleted was one from the respected Caijing Magazine, which cited an interview with a firefighter who said they were not told about harmful chemicals that would not react with water at the site of the incident. The message was reposted over 10,000 times before being deleted.

Another is a report about sodium cyanide getting into the country’s sewage system, amongst others, which have also been deleted.

This is not the first time such censorship has been carried out in China, after a high profile train wreck a few years ago became a media nightmare for the Chinese government.

The China Digital Times has also revealed that the Chinese government has released instructions to media personnel at the explosion site to not make personal posts about the incident on any of their social media accounts.

Watch video of the explosion below:

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