Western Media Weighs In On Tzuyu’s Political Controversy

Tzuyu‘s flag controversy, which quickly escalated after singer Huang An accused her of being a traitor in early January, has gained the attention of western media.

Media such as The Washington Post, the New York Times, CNN, ABC Newsand BBC have all reported on Tzuyu’s flag controversy, some noting that her alleged forced apology to China and its citizens was humiliating for the young Taiwanese K-pop singer (The Washington Post).

Taiwan’s Presidential voting occurred just this past Saturday with some media noting that Tzuyu’s scandal and apology video may have affected the polling as Tsai Ing-wen (Democratic Progressive Party) became the country’s next leader.

“The video probably had only a marginal impact on the outcome of Saturday’s vote, as people angered by the incident were most likely to vote for Ms. Tsai anyway, said Jonathan Sullivan, an associate professor at the School of Contemporary Chinese Studies at the University of Nottingham.” – (New York Times)

“People in Taiwan are very angry about this,” said Hsiao Yi-ci, 29, a painter. “This sort of oppression from China really upsets people,” she said. “If you are abroad and can’t show your flag, can’t represent your country, that makes Taiwanese people very afraid.”  – (New York Times)

“The Chou Tzu-yu incident makes Taiwan people realize they are not the same as Chinese people,” said Liu Che-lin, 34, a musician.  – (New York Times)

Some blurbs by other Western media:

“Prompted by her apology and announcement she was taking a break from all activities in the mainland Chinese market for allegedly offending fans there, Juksy, a Taiwanese pop culture news site, offered to buy her out of her contract up to 100 million New Taiwan dollars (2.98 million US dollars) and bring the singer back to Taiwan. ‘We’re saddened and heartbroken by the political pressure faced by an inexperienced 16-year-old Taiwanese girl,’ Juksy said in a statement. ‘We’ve decided to stand up and give her a new possibility, a new choice.'” – (CNN)

[About Huang An] “[…] a Taiwanese former singer who’s been based in Beijing for more than a decade and a history of attacking entertainers that are not pro-Beijing. Calling himself ‘Independence Buster’, Huang is known for going after Taiwanese and Hong Kong entertainers with so-called ‘separatist’ beliefs on Weibo, China’s Twitter equivalent.” – (CNN)

“Chou Tzuyu, a Taiwanese singer and dancer in the Korean girl group Twice, fell on the wrong side of China when she innocently showed the flag of the Republic of China – Taiwan’s official name – along with the Korean flag, in a variety show shown online.” – (BBC)

“Although Taiwan’s Nationalists and the DPP differ over Taiwan’s ultimate fate, the Tzuyu issue prompted a rare show of unity across the political spectrum.” – (Associated Press via ABC News)