In a comical twist of fate, the latest company charged with hurting the feelings of the Chinese people by violating the “one-China” policy is Huawei.
The smartphone maker is one of China’s most successful companies. Over the past year, patriotic netizens have rushed to defend the tech giant from numerous attacks from abroad, particularly after the arrest of Huawei CFO Meng Wanzhou in Canada at the request of the US last December.
However, Huawei’s own patriotism is under question after it was discovered that certain models of their models set a politically-controversial double-standard.
Users found that when setting a time zone, Taiwan’s capital was listed as “Taipei (China)” when the language was set to simplified Chinese characters, but “Taipei (Taiwan)” when it was set to traditional characters, as are used on the island.
The finding stirred anger online, spawning a hashtag calling for Huawei to apologize and calls for a boycott. The hashtag has since been deleted.
Outrage has been all the rage this week on Weibo with three fashion brands, Versace, Coach, and Givenchy, forced to issue apologies over T-shirts which implied that Hong Kong and Taiwan are separate countries.
Huawei, on the other hand, has issued no apologies, but has changed its software so that “Taiwan (China)” is listed in both simplified and traditional characters on phones inside China while going with simply “Taiwan” abroad.