Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) legislators said the Mainland Affairs Council (MAC) is trying to “gradually unify the two sides of the Strait by connecting cross-strait culture,” as evidenced by an activity it held on its Facebook page.
The trivia contest, which began on Nov. 9 and closed on Friday, was titled “The Global Village — Feng Shen Bang (封神榜)” and emphasized the differences in Internet lingo around the world.
The homepage started with the question: “Did you know Chinese netizens use the term qiang sha fa (搶沙發) to mean qiang tou xiang (搶頭香)?”
This was followed by a test on the differences in vocabulary usage between Chinese and Taiwanese netizens.
Qiang sha fa and qiang tou xiang mean to be the first to post a response on a blog or a forum.
The contest could only be accessed by netizens who “like” the council’s Facebook page. Comprising 10 questions, it asked for the Chinese Internet lingo equivalent of items such as instant coffee, hair dryers, roller coasters and soft-drink cans.
To draw more participants to the event, the council offered movie tickets and other gifts. The first 200 participants also received a “Door God” figurine.
Critics have said that although it was titled “The Global Village,” it only asked for the equivalent used in China.
The contest was not widely participated in, with only 13 posts in total, with one netizen surnamed Lee (李) writing that when asking friends in China about some of the vocabulary listed in the questions, they also did not know.
DPP caucus whip Tsai Huang-liang (蔡煌瑯) criticized the council on Saturday, saying that the agency was wasting public funds and not doing its job.
Tsai said the council was trying to link Chinese culture with Taiwan and promoting gradual unification by making people understand the different names and appellations used by the separate cultures.
“This is an obvious attempt to unify China and Taiwan under the table,” Tsai said.
In response, the council said the era of the global village was a time when one should understand different cultures, customs and languages, and broaden one’s views, adding that Taiwanese should not close themselves off.
Translated by Jake Chung, staff writer
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