Those who oppose the appointment of Twitter’s new Greater China managing director Kathy Chen “are often narrow-minded, radical and easily make stupid cognitive mistakes,” Chinese state mouthpiece Global Times said in a column on Tuesday.
The newspaper also said that the “strong opposition against appointing Chen is an affair between the company and some of its users. It brings no damage to the Chinese mainland and is not something we need to worry about.”
Hong Kong media reported on Monday that Chen had worked at a Chinese military research facility for seven years after her graduation. In 1999, she worked at a software company CA-Jinchen, a joint venture between Computer Associates International , a U.S. based company, and China’s Ministry of Public Security.
After her appointment, she tweeted a reply to CCTV’s Twitter account calling for the two companies to “work together to tell great China story to the world!”
— Kathy Chen (@kathychen2016) April 15, 2016
She similarly called for closer partnerships with Xinhua in a reply to the state news wire on Twitter. Chinese dissidents on the platform concerned about the appointment used the tag #TwitterisDead in Chinese.
Global Times put the dissenting views down to an “overseas anti-China circle,” calling them “extreme and ridiculous” and saying that “they are too pessimistic and lack security.”
Twitter user Eric Fish tweeted that – despite the positive reaction from Chinese state media outlets and companies – Global Times was one of the only ones to focus on those who oppose Kathy Chen’s twitter appointment.
Well this is interesting… pic.twitter.com/leTNGvsSWN
— Eric Fish (@ericfish85) April 19, 2016
Twitter is currently blocked in mainland China and the company has said that it intends to expand its base of Chinese advertisers with the new appointment.