Comments: 4416 • Responses: 41  • Date: 

Alantuktuk910 karma

Do you ever have any fear of expressing views that would not be agreeable to the government? People have stated that by saying the wrong things, police come and question them, threaten with arrest. I’m imagining that we never hear of anyone actually getting arrested because they either learn their lesson or disappear.

masonofchina1109 karma

Disappearance does happen, but only in extremely rare occasions. Friends talking in private is 100% safe. Posting your opinion online is somewhat less safe but most of times the website take down your comment first and nothing happens. if you attract huge attention, or try to overtly cause riot, then you would be asking for trouble

Edit: disappearance sometimes just mean they are off grid. For example actress Fan Bin Bin’s disappearance made news on reddit, people saying she got locked up for tax evasion. Nope, months later she resurfaced, and turns out she’s just hiding her pregnancy. There are many cases like this creating confusion in west because you guys never read follow up article.

fiddel_fabulous539 karma

How does that not bring you to anger? Or fear? I would say it is not freedom but prison of the mind.

masonofchina208 karma

simple answer, we are annoyed, but not annoyed enough to do something. we have jobs, families, those are our priorities.

xyrys339 karma


masonofchina338 karma

Hahaha. It's definitely a thing. I would say it's awful lot of tech involved for distributing toilet paper. But there are people who just steal toilet papers so I guess it serves a purpose. It also shows facial recognition tech is not that expensive since it is used in such mundane circumstances. I personally would avoid it because it records your private information, never trust small tech companies handling your information.

atheoryofjustice315 karma

What asymmetry exists, if any, regarding native Chinese and Chinese-Americans' opinions on contemporary Chinese politics, both domestic and foreign?

masonofchina520 karma

That's a HUGE topic. If I have to pick one, I would say Chinese people value economic development over other things. It's always economy first when talking about both domestic and foreign issues. Chinese people have the mentality that "development is the fundamental human rights", whereas the Americans focus on freedom of speech, democracy, etc. I personally have to side with former because I believe that although freedom is very valuable, and nice to have, we also have other goals that are equally important, such as the right of education, the freedom from starvation. In a "free society" you might have the freedom to travel wherever you want, but it would not be practically possible without decent income. For Chinese people, past few years saw expansion of our "real freedom" due to economic growth

knighttimeblues214 karma

Won't you get in trouble for calling China's society dystopian?

masonofchina277 karma

There is certainly circumstances you cannot criticize the government. But my experience is that they don't care unless you attract huge attention. Posting on Reddit would be fine.

knighttimeblues141 karma

So is Reddit visible to every internet user in China? Or just selected ones or ones using a VPN?

masonofchina319 karma

only people who use VPN. VPN is not that hard, but average Chinese people simply don't have motive to use one as the blocked websites are in English. So not many Chinese are using it.

knighttimeblues49 karma

So does anyone in the Chinese government know you are doing this AMA?

masonofchina115 karma

Not that I'm aware of. But hey, I don't really know

Cdbull116 karma

What are the Chinese views of America? The two countries have been projected as at “trade war” for quite some time. Has this affected the people’s views on the American people?

masonofchina300 karma

Deep down I think it's envy. We want to live like Americans in terms of materialistic abundance. Average Chinese people would be very friendly towards average American in a non-political environment. for US government, we have a very negative view, seeing it constantly trying to undermine China's development.

rainbowshummingbird107 karma

So, are you pro China in regard to the HK protests? Because you feel that the HK citizens are “overreacting”?

masonofchina166 karma

Like I said in the post, I don't really want to discuss my personal opinions in reddit because it would always fall towards pointing fingers and spamming insults. Let's just say I respct Hong Kong people's concerns over SAR government,

uJellie56 karma

Do the Chinese ever ask you questions about the West? What do they seem the most interested in?

masonofchina182 karma

what food do westerners eat

brotherRod25 karma

What is your answer?

masonofchina27 karma

Pasta pizza burgers... people are amazed that Americans don’t eat rice everyday

jumpchemical673 karma

How much do mainland Chinese know about democracy in other countries? What do mainland Chinese think democracy is?

masonofchina161 karma

People of course know what democracy is, and Chinese audience followed 2016 US election very closely which was great entertainment. We think democracy is great in theory, but not so if implemented in China. There would be chaos, confusion, inefficiency, etc. People fear a drastic change to democracy would turn out disastrous like Iraq, USSR, etc

twist-1771 karma

Is there a good place to get tacos in Beijing?

masonofchina105 karma

actually yes. I know few place attracting foreigners. You can search it in Da Zhong Dian Ping app which is like yelp

filoph67 karma

You’ve said that most Chinese people don’t really care about politics. So what do most (or a lot of) Chinese people care about?

masonofchina175 karma

job, income, real estate, getting married,

theviewfrom5Terre46 karma

How come Chinese culture isn't shared with the West the way, say, Japanese culture is? Things like anime, manga, and Japanese video games are readily available in the West. Why does China not do the same? I mean, there are definitely ways to access Chinese media/culture, but there doesn't seem to be as much an effort to get stuff out there as other cultures. Why is that?

masonofchina68 karma

I would say cultural development comes after economic development. Manga and anime rose in 1970s when Japan already experienced their first economic boom. China is simply too poor before, I imagine you would see more Chinese cultural products in the future like Tik Tok(I hate it too)

FriendsWitBenedicts36 karma

Would you rather live under Chinese communism or British monarchy?

masonofchina72 karma

Depends on time period. 19th century, 20 century definitely in Britain because of high living standard. Today? I'll pick China because of all the opportunities

thergoat26 karma

Can you elaborate on the opportunities available? Also, what did you study in school, if I may ask?

masonofchina76 karma

I probably should not answer this question as I have never been to the UK. But from what I understand, China today still has momentum of social movement, average people can climb the class ladder and be rich. There is also a start-up fever in China as many people are trying to create new innovative products for the market. The environment felt energetic at least in Beijing

Ghana_Mafia28 karma

What is you opinion on the prominence of mobile pay and the almost cashless way of buying/selling/paying for goods and services in China?

Do you miss having actually paper money and coins in your wallet or have you quickly adapted to using your phone to pay for everything?

I must admit...I don't think I like the idea of using a phone to pay for everything.....what if someone hacks my phone?...or what if I lose my phone?...or crack my phone screen?...or what if someone is able to scan my phone without my concern?.....

masonofchina61 karma

it's been great, no one misses paper money. I get annoyed when I have to use paper money but that happens probably once a month. Whats great is mobile payment's universality, its not just paying meal at KFC, you can also use mobile payment in online shopping, in taxi app, you can transfer money to your friends instantly. It solves all money related problems

masonofchina28 karma

Thank you everyone for asking questions and reading my answers. Did not get to answer all questions, some I feel I don't have enough knowledge to discuss. I'll come back after work and try to answer more.

el_nino3124 karma

What do the PRC citizens feel about the "One Belt One Road" initiative?

masonofchina74 karma

Foremost, average people don't have opinions over politics because it is too dry. Belt and Road is also very distant from your average Chinese's life. So for most of us, it is just a "ok I guess that's neat" response. For people follow politics regularly, the consensus is that it is a great way to connect Chinese business with other country and great PR work.

m_faustus17 karma

You mention that you are a western-educated Chinese, and you also mention that you feel that there is the opportunity for social and economic advancement within Chinese society. How much of Chinese society would have the opportunity and resources to get a Western education?

masonofchina38 karma

  1. super smart kid can get into any US university.
  2. if you have to pay your way into US university, I would say middle class can do that if they sell a house or use all their savings. Chinese people always have savings.

tom-tillis16 karma

Why does Hong Kong have different rules than mainland china?

Spamwarrior54 karma

I'm sure OP has a better response than this, but there's an interesting cgp Grey video on this topic.


masonofchina55 karma

CGP Grey's video is enough to explain. Thank you

MountVernonWest5 karma

How does your government treat LGBTQ+ issues, and is this something that could change?

masonofchina2 karma

China's policy towards LGBT is they have no policy, you are free to do whatever you want in your house. I would of course in favor of same sex marriage, but the consensus is that its not necessary, plus it would anger conservative portion of the people.

jjkonia5 karma

What do you think about the legal system and the laws in China?

masonofchina10 karma

Not as mature as US, hope it improves in the future

IBimsEinsFynn3 karma

Can you access western sites like YouTube, Google, Facebook using a VPN?

masonofchina6 karma


BraTaTa2 karma

How are you protecting yourself from the great filtering of unqualified government ideas on the digital network? Asking for info.

masonofchina3 karma

I use vpn to browse reddit.