Saturday, 22 September, 2018

This epic eye-roll from a Chinese reporter is breaking the internet

Screen capture of Liang rolling her eyes Screen capture of Liang rolling her eyes
Patty Aguilar | 14 March, 2018, 22:35

Yet another person called the eye-roll "a facial expression for the new era", incorporating the popularly-used slogan used in current government information campaigns.

A financial journalist has become a banned search term on Chinese social media after a video of her rolling her eyes at another journalist's soft ball question to Chinese authorities became a viral meme.

With a fellow reporter's fawning question to a Chinese official pushing past the 30-second mark, Liang Xiangyi, of the financial news site Yicai, began scoffing to herself.

"I can identify with Liang Xiangyu's attitude and expression when she rolls her eyes", another said. As Zhang Huijun went on and on for almost 40 seconds, Liang Xiangyi didn't hide how unimpressed she was, as she dramatically rolled her eyes and looked away with disgust.

However, not everyone supports the blue-dressed woman, who is named Liang Xiangyi.

A TV reporter's theatrical eye-roll during another journalist's question at a news conference stole the show this week during China's annual parliament session, exploding on Chinese social media before censors intervened.

Liang's name and the search term "question-asking bi--" trended on Weibo, China's micro-blogging service.

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Reporters from media outlets based overseas but with ties back to China's state media apparatus are often called on at government events so that Beijing can appear to cede the floor to "foreign" journalists - who will nonetheless toe the party line.

A vote Sunday abolished rules limiting heads of state to 10 years in power, setting President Xi Jinping on a course to potentially rule the country for life.

On Tuesday morning Beijing had announced a major government overhaul that was overshadowed by Liang's hammy performance.

The eye-roll was filmed by state-run broadcaster CCTV and was even filmed on mobile phones by mainland netizens and shared online.

Then came the drama of the two reporters, one in red, one in blue. "Without exception, websites must not hype the episode", according to the US-based China Digital Times, which posted the leaked directive.

For the record, here is the question that started the epic eye-roll, with a punch line to boot. Rumours swirled that she had been fired; the journalist's Weibo account had also been closed. On paper, this seems like a simple enough question, only Zhang took 45 seconds to ask it. What is the relationship between China's free trade negotiations and the multi-lateral trading system? More so, if you at all think of visiting China. "Please summarise for us, thank you".

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