Wednesday, 17 October 2012

China’s Success Creates Further Racism For BBC's and China Nationals Living In The West

In Britain, there is no question that ethnic minorities are slowly finding their voices. Afro Caribbean Black people, African Black people, Indians and Pakistanis form sizable groups, all quite well established and more importantly proud of their individual status and also part of an ethnic group with its own culture.

Amidst all this, ethnic Chinese seem to form fragmented communities punctuated by Chinese supermarkets dotted around large cities where once a week or month, Chinese people may come together to do their shopping specific to their personal needs.

Dig deeper and it’s very evident that many younger Chinese are no longer going to these places to shop and more and more have merged into the host nation’s culture. This is natural of course, after all, we are all living in Britain and will form friendship with people indigenous to this country.

Please see below an article about our history, a study done in London 2009 to help find out the changing needs of the Chinese community within London. I’m sure many can recognise and relate to the findings:

Many cultures that have formed in Britain, the ethnic minorities that have grown strong in political power and religion tend to all have been part of the British empire. Yet China, no stranger to foreigners pillaging its treasures can still argue it had never officially been colonised. It’s this one single fact that I believe determines our struggle to gain acceptance and even respect.

The simple matter is many Chinese nationals enter this country quickly work their way up the social ladder through education or hard work. You compare this with other ethnic groups, and will quickly see that we can work our way up the ranks in job titles or in earning power. This is mimicked across all western developed countries too. A study in June 2012 conducted in America showed precisely how Asian Americans rose quickly up the ranks in a short space of time compared to other ethnic immigrants.

Based on these statistics alone, you would think that we would have more say and  respect, and yet Black Africans and Pakistanis can command more rights and respect which tells me two things. You need to be a victim (colonized before) or you need to show struggle to get something in life. The British love a sorry case. Both not really linked to the Chinese communities here in Britain.

Whilst we are busy integrating, China has been growing stronger. Many BBC's will have watched from far mostly disinterested in what’s happening. But unknown to many BBC's, the media in the meantime have been building a slow hate campaign against China. Only able to get away with it because of the sheer fact that the ‘challenger’ had never been colonized. The brazen press go into over-drive very often with little evidence, claiming China’s closed society as the reason for the sketchy research and potential lies.

China might be emerging and about to take on America. BBC's growing up here do not seem to form any kind of link or opinion on China. Probably thanks to our parents’ ignorant views on Mainlanders formed from decades before. I find it strange that many either are ignorant or ‘choose’ to not link or discuss things relating to China. Even this blog sometimes can be accused of failing to discuss China, which is very narrow minded since we all have a history, and it pays to understand the whys and where because in the end, to form a sub-culture or new culture, you need to have started from somewhere to get here.

Many BBC's fail to link this issue, and I believe failure to do this either comes from our upbringing because many of our parents are still riding this fake high believing it’s pre-1997 Hong Kong and being part of the empire makes them extra special. Many are ignorant towards China, almost distancing themselves, therefore creating this separation for us to believe to be true when half of the British population can’t tell China from Taiwan let alone Hong Kong. We are all Chinese to them…

Many minority groups in Britain are very interested in their history, whether vaguely or detailed. Many also have parents that have taught them to be very proud and stand up for their own rights as a minority. Chinese people living abroad tend to do the opposite. They tend to teach their kids to bury their heads and beaver away through education. I have even witnessed some telling their children to forget about their past.

What do we get in the end?  Someone who can perform in their jobs and earn a lot of money. But collectively, BBC's are possibly invisible, with no kind of culture or strong presence that speaks for the BBC's. Why? Because we have more or less adopted this country with our arms open. We do this because our parents did. We do not view this country with suspicion like other minority groups here do in Britain. The Empire thing helps to cement that suspicion. But for BBC's, we are led (falsely) to believe we are one of Britain’s specially protected regions. Simple fact is, hardly anyone knows the full difference of Hong Kong and China nowadays.

With our parents failing to teach us a full account of our own history. We blindly go about our days never asking the questions. Questions like: Why are we not looked upon with any kind of respect.  Why are we expected to take insults more readily and accept slurs at the drop of a hat.

The answer lies in China. It was never part of the empire and, now able to challenge the west on capitalism after years of manufacturing. The political powers and the media controllers are unable to contain themselves with the bitter jealousy. Even more annoying is the fact that China was not expected to rise in any shape or form, especially after communism.

BBC's in Britain can gain acceptance if they either merge themselves in British culture and clear themselves of any traces of Chinese heritage. Many BBC's are already more closely linked to British culture than Chinese culture. Quite a few play ignorant regarding anything to do with China. There are many that don’t want to discuss Falung Gong, Dalai Lama’s exile and the struggles of Uighurs’ independence etc, because they are deeply unpopular subjects for Britons rather than ourselves, possibly blurring our boundaries of BBC's and Mainland China.

My question is, by doing these things, it’s denial and turning down a chance to face head-on where we are in Britain. Why are so many highly educated staying silent on subjects that should be close to our hearts? Many ethnic minorities who are very passionate about their past, their heritage and yet, they are able to incorporate that in with their culture here in Britain. They then also enjoy the victim status awarded to them by the western nations, which Chinese nationals do not get because the Chinese are not victims but villains.

Why? Because we are not victims in the eyes of the west because we were never officially colonised. A problem for BBC's living in Britain today. Our voices are made even more weaker because we are actually viewed with suspicion.

A couple of cases proved this in America when ABC's were even accused of being spies when they were working for a computer chip company. Many of the allegations die down and you never hear from them again. Because they are unsubstantiated. Such headlines are now part of the norm because the media are normalising this image of untrustworthy Chinese people who cannot be trusted, even if they’re brought up in America. Chinese students that are highly educated are routinely accused of being spies for China if they so happen to make a tiny mistake for a computer company. If they hack, expect the police to be at their door within minutes.

Below are just some links and examples that are regularly littering the headlines and internet:

According to Sir James Dyson , ‘he thinks’ the Chinese come here to study for dubious reasons. To steal secrets for their own technology. These unchallenged claims are able to fill even the broad sheets, where one of Britain’s leading inventors  can openly accuse a whole nationality of such actions speaks volumes. Not only is it now some kind of an open secret, his claims are receiving nods from others too. He would certainly receive a reprimand very quickly if he had said Nigerians did that.

The Telegraph found time to tell us how the French intelligent service had warned how the pesky Chinese are partial to stealing information for company gain. Read the article carefully, and you soon recognise it’s an exercise to tell French companies to be more smarter since all techniques employed by the Chinese companies are perfectly within their rights. When the Chinese are smarter in business, they are spies apparently.

Finally, BBC’s highly in-depth report on ‘China’ sending thousands to developed countries to deliberately gather important data to help its development. They reluctantly accept that some are just rich families who want their children to do well, so choose to study abroad, but note, the general tone is Chinese only get to where they are because they are cheats and spies. China can’t get to where they are through merit, it has to be something sinister and nasty. More slanderous news reporting.

In the end, it means we as an ethnic group can be despised rather than admired. So for those that bury their heads, merging in with the host nation’s culture, thinking Britain will accept them, I think not. Not until the day China collapse, we will never have a sympathetic voice or able to draw government money to help with the Chinese communities because we are not one of Britain’s victims. Even more damaging, we may be witnessing a new-wave of racism directed at us, more intolerant and more blatant. All because of China’s ability to stand up without the hand-out and help of the west.

We as BBC's must admit this. Until we open our eyes and accept this, we will never have a fair voice. We need to rise up and fill the internet with pages of the media hatred and unjust reporting going on daily. We need to wake up from the comfortable surroundings and understand that if we believed in equality as the western education taught us, we need to look closer for equality.

If we don’t start now, in a decade’s time, we may be seeing full-on hatred. People from the streets, our colleagues and neighbours could one day turn against us, all because of our failure to speak up and say how we feel and utilise our knowledge of our rights and demand respect and fair reporting. It’s time for BBC's to fight back, show pride in ourselves and our ethnicity here and in China.

(By Guest Blogger- BBCNewAgenda is a British Born Chinese Female living in the UK)


  1. What a great piece, and incredibly well researched. The only things I have to add is that essentially, the Chinese and their descendants who have settled in other nations have traded in political and social status for economic status.

    Amongst many Chinese they will say that's a good thing... to those I say, read up on the anti Chinese riots in Indonesia, Malaysia, Solomon Islands the past few decades, and the anti Chinese sentiment in general - well, everywhere. All countries that Chinese immigrants and their descendants (some several generations down) have settled in have - for the most part, contributed to their new home, their country's economy (at the expense of China's if they had stayed). Created jobs, inventions, made life easier for natives. Do those Chinese get a thanks? No, in the case of the above countries' Chinese citizens, the women were raped, the men and kids were killed (after being forced to watch the locals rape their wives of course).

    It is similar to the anti-Jew sentiment the past few hundred years - economically successful, but "on the street" they are pseudo pariahs who - when times are "tough" - are quickly turned on. You could be best friends one minute, yet face a progrom the next (again, see the above countries' cases).

    Of course the major exception is that the Jews didn't have "a China" .... that big bad, red, communist rising mass, out to steal your daughters (surely it's the other way round) and jobs (I'm sure the British would love to work in the coal mines and factories again, lung disease and losing your body parts in industrial accidents is sooo wonderful).

    1. Anonymous17/10/12:21:17, the comparison with Jews have been mentioned in the past, and it's not too hard to see the similarities. Where the Chinese do well where placed either through choice or through the so-called masters who 'really' controlled China at the time, the indigenous tend to turn on them over time, and the theme is the same. Either jealousy or through the sheer inability to accept that on an even footing, the best won.

      In Malaysia, the government have already resorted to positive discrimmination to dampen Chinese success and actually create policies to deliberately favour the Malays.

      As seen in Indonesia, the government did very little to apologise and compensate the Chinese. I note at the time, the media had very little sympathy for the Chinese, where many were injured and died, they preferred to dwell on the poverty in the country and the government's corrupt situation creating the unrest. The Chinese would have to accept being victims in situations of unrest.

      The stealing is not so much about jobs, but the fact that capitalism and greed of the west chose to deal with China, and expect China to always remain in that position.

      All the negative headlines go through similar outcomes. China shouldn't join in the success because it would mean the cost of manufacturing western goods will eventually go up and people will end up buying Chinese brands in the future. China is unstable, and to allow China to continue its growth will mean a possible war or threat. SF.


  2. The second point you raise is about rising Chinese creativity, intelligence, inventions etc. substituted for copying, cheating, lying. It comes part and parcel with a failing peoples, looking at the Chinese as they are "rising", getting jealous and trying every dirty trick in the book to stall their rise so they can hold onto power, status and privilege that bit longer.... google the US Senate's recent "report" on Huaiwei and ZTE, Chinese companies that are starting to get global recognition - promptly seen as a threat by the US, and as a result them trying every dirty trick and labelling them as copycats and spies with government funding so they can be discredited and business goes to THEIR companies instead....

    You should all read up on the case, but if you don't have time - basically the US have said that no American business should trade with them as they have ties to the Chinese government and steal their data - the latter excuse having never been proven of course, just rumours and paranoia speculation (which is usually enough if they shout loud enough).... the first excuse being quite ridiculous considering most multinational American corporationss - Microsoft, Cisco, General Electric etc... (our very own census was run by a subsidiary of Lockheed Martin) have "ties to the government".... preferential treatment in contracts, sharing data etc.... yet those companies still do business with most countries in the world, including China.

    Yup, this is all a universal effort of "allies" i.e. whites, using the drip drip effect of discrediting the Chinese so as to prevent their rise, stopping them from achieving what they can, ruining their potential. If you look at the news archives in the 60s-90s, when Japan went from a poor manufacturing base (like China is now) to a global brand with numerous companies making their mark in the world (the Americans went mental when Japanese car brands were surpassing sales of US cars - a Chinese American was murdered because white Americans had the "they took our jobs" mentality), the Americans have "learnt their lesson" and don't want another East Asian nation with talent to succeed again... they want Brand America to retain ownership of the world.

    And that is why you are seeing this massive effort, on the part of white media (which has a global, effective reach), supported by their politicians, using every nasty underhand trick to discredit China and the Chinese.

    1. Anonymous 21:18, that's the problem. The media go for the headlines, and they know many just read the bold or just the headlines. Of course group companies and sister companies still deal with China, but the nationalistic press in the west tend to play the gung-ho proud Brit who will not deal with China because it's a sell-out to the little Englanders.

      I wonder how many will go to great lengths to make sure luxury brands like Langham Hotels has nothing to do with the Chinese, or it might devalue the brand.

      During the last presidential elections in America, the republicans went into over-drive on their anti China slogan, blaming the whole country for its woes. It's continuing right now where China is blamed for anything to everything. The reality is the US only 2.7% are Chinese made goods, but you'd think otherwise. More BBCs need to open their eyes and stand up to the lies and misleading headlines. SF.

    2. Wow only 2.7%? It seems I too have been brainwashed by white media. Not just BBCs, the rest of the world including whites - everyone seems to be believe everything is made in China.

    3. Anonymous 18/10/12:21:23, sorry, I didn't make it clear enough there. The US consume only 2.7% of China made goods. That was in 2010. The actual total is more like 34% China made products for the US market. So the when the election time comes, it's quite disgraceful how the Chinese are used as some kind of prop to scare voters. SF.

  3. I've just read that 2009 report in the original post above. Scant mention of BBCs and other settled Chinese in it (a couple of paragraphs), and zero reference of them being British, we are just all Chinese. Ironic considering a couple of the authors are also Chinese.

    1. 18/10/12:12:38, British Born seems to be a silent thing, and as far as I'm concerned, in this country, if you have a Chinese face, it's Chinese, not a Chinese born here. It's still not accepted unlike Indians and Black people. Basically the reason I posted this whole article. We might think we are British, but the reality is far from that, and some BBCs need to wake up with all the anti Chinese going on around us.

      I find it strange so many ethnic British Born can ignore this. Many merge into the society quickly and any trace of their ethnicity becomes invisible. So it's even more ironic how descriptions of British Born seems to not exist. SF.

    2. Kinda like this then

      Something that is present in most forms, you can be British but only Chinese.

    3. I'd agree with you both that if BBCs need a 'logical' reason for becoming China-proud, it's that as you rightly say, for those BBCs who keen to merge into the mainstream to become 'invisible' for the British public, no-one knows/cares what a Chinese who is 'British Born' is.

      In a weird way similar to how HK wants to wave British flags at protests against China, and yet the world views them as 'Chinese'.

      Another good reason, maybe for HK-FOB influenced BBC's to become China-proud. It's clearly obvious Britain doesn't want to recognize us as being British, as your article states.

      However whilst HK is actually in the long term safer belonging to China ( IMO), BBC's who may feel they have little power, ought to stop being scared of being 'the nail that stands out' and make their peace with being proud to be racially Chinese. That China is the next superpower can only help us not hinder us, regardless of HK FOB distain on Mainlanders etc.

      You also got to remember that the same HK FOB mentality has done little for our own British Chinese community that we have today.

      Maybe learning Putonghua is a bit much for those who have strong Canto/Hakka roots but opening your mind a bit cant hurt.

      Its race, not politics that in the long term count,because thats what the anglo imperialist war is about - extinction of the Chinese RACE

      So regardless of clueless FOBS or apathetic HK-derived BBC outlook,Chinese are Chinese, for better or for worse, BBCs should learn to unite around a sense of China-identification with Chinese racial pride, because in the western ways, we will always be excluded no matter what.

      As long as China hasnt been colonised, we have to look at ourselves as being PRIVILEGED to be view ourselves as being racially Chinese in light of that. In some ways its a great thing to be hated because in light of western global politics, sinophobia etc... it means just by our very existance, we are doing something right by pissing them off the pathetic jealous bastards haha

  4. On a side note, are some overseas Mainland Chinese students/tourist giving us Chinese ppl/BBCs a bad name?

    1. Yes, the behaviour of Chinese nationals and former Chinese nationals are indeed giving Chinese a bad name, I covered it before.

      There are several other articles I could link too.

    2. 'Even this blog sometimes can be accused of failing to discuss China, which is very narrow minded.'

      I'll counter that. The internet is littered with websites that discuss China, by China I mean exclusively, i.e Chinas domestic issues and her foreign policy etc. if you want to discuss that, go to a china blog.

      As a British Chinese blog, we don't need to discuss it. China has very little to do with British Born Chinese, China is largely an issue for FOBs, China has nothing directly to do with BBCs, China should only be discussed in relation to the following...i.e Chinese in Britain, British in China, Britain and China.

      However, the main reason China is discussed on here is because British Born Chinese in general live isolated lives with no tangible progressive British Chinese culture of their own, they have no media, they have no British Chinese diaspora education, so they cant discuss our community, what they do instead is discuss China as China is constantly reported by the mainstream. British Chinese who cannot discuss Chinese issues affecting their own community without referring to China aren't worth my time. The arguments you've put forward that we aren't being accepted as British etc, well, stop discussing China then and start discussing your own community in Britain and maybe people will start taking you seriously as a 'British' person.

      The mainstream media constantly reports on Chinas domestic issues, but seldom ever reports on BBCs or the British Chinese community.

      Now this blog, if you read this...

      You will see what I'm trying to achieve, that is develop a collective identity based on being British Chinese, this blog IS the British Chinese media, there is no other news website covering UK Chinese issues in the English language that is targeted towards UK's English speaking British Chinese community.

    3. You're not a Chinese national, you don't live there, you probably haven't even been there, so why write articles about China? Discussing China doesn't do anything for BBC identity, discussing China will not progress your identity as BBCs. As I said before, the more you talk about China, the more the British mainstream media reports on China, the less interest there will be in reporting/reading about BBC/BC community, the more the BBC and BC community will become invisible. You are writing and talking about China, when you should be spending your time constructively investigating and researching the BBC/BC community.

      If any of you have access to FOB media such as FOB newspapers written in Chinese characters or even watch TVB Europe news, you will notice something, they never report on BBCs, the only time they report on Chinese disapora is if there is a Chinese speaking FOB to interview or FOB Chinese students in Britain, basically things FOBS do. Why? Because their audience are Chinese speaking FOBS, they dont give a f*** about BBCs. It is the perpetual foreigner syndrome. FOB media only reports on 'themselves as FOBs.' Now why on earth are you expecting us as English speaking British national BBCs to report on FOBS too? They already have their own media, we as BBC dont. Our duty is to report on issues that 'affect US,' 'not THEM.'

    4. LaughinGor, your comments remind me of my parent's views. Yes, there are some rotten apples amongst us, but aren't all other ethnic minorities suffering similar 'hand-picked' headlines? The successful ones are not applauded in the mainstream press but the criminals are.

      The successful ones tend to get a mention in select publications for a much smaller audience, and often mentioned to deliberately raise a few eyebrows like it was not expected. SF.

  5. Nice article SF, however without a leader, British Chinese are just ambling about, whether we are BBCs, Cantonese FOBS or Mainlander students. As we know Nat Wei is doing what he can to learn Mandarin, but as with most things nowadays, it's 'up in the air' and to be honest don't really see him doing much beyond being a government stooge, even if he does become a master of Putonghua overnight.

    Also, the real powers that be that ought to be doing something about the media Sinophobia - China - seem to be unbothered with meddling in British affairs, in contrast to say the prying western media interference re: Bo Xi Lai , Ai Wei Wei, Tibet, etc.

    So though it's correct to say BBC's should take a more racial pride stance,being the most savvy of British media Sinophobia and discrimination, in reality taking that quantum leap from the self interested nattering house-wife forums to outspoken defenders of the Chinese race just doesn't seem realistic.

    And I'm guessing many BBC's HK FOB folks have indoctrinated BBCs to hate mainlanders/China. I know my own FOB elder family members are either bitter or indifferent towards China.

    So it could take some convincing, esp if many HK BBCs don't really mix with mix with mainlanders or FOB students, one only real solution would be for more BBCs to visit their original ancestral roots in China as a wake-up call, or at very least travel there to find a Chinese city they can 'identify with'.

    Also, on a personal note, if you haven't already, do you intend to visit China at some point? Have you had much interaction with any Mainlander students in the UK?

    May be worth getting a first hand experience to get a broader view on building a China-proud BBC outlook, e.g: ask Mainlanders their opinions on China if you haven't already.

    1. Happybritishchinese, I have been to China about ten years ago. It wasn't long but I definitely aim to be back soon.

      I have told you, my family are from the New territories and we speak Hakka, a dying dialect as you probably know. Hakkas tend to feel like they're the under-dogs all the time, and like most Hong Kong people, there is a divide. Of course mainlanders are different, and the mixing is almost zero.

      It's true that mainlanders and those from Taiwan/Hong Kong don't mix. The size of China compared to Britain tells me it will take a lot longer for all corners of China to bond like the Welsh do with Scots in this country. The sheer scale is the problem. SF.

    2. Ive got Hakka blood in my family and in identifying with underdogs, more Hakkas in their lack of mixing with mainlanders maybe ought to realise that China are only looking out for Chinese people and in the face of softpower invasion and endless media sinophobia, Chinese race (us) are actually the underdogs in light of western globalist supremacy.

    3. You talk so much sense in that post hbc, we are a relatively small minority in the country, compounded by the fact that the vast majority of our community don't give a shit and don't realise the creeping sinophobia and racism... and of course, if no one is there to oppose, the white majority (and other minorities) will happily take advantage.

      Though visiting China and HK to rediscover your roots might be misleading... imagine a kid born here to Shanghaiese parents, they're in for a shock when they visit and realise that Shanghai is basically any western high street with chinese writing on the store names!

    4. Agreed about Shanghai, but at least he would be doing something honest. And regardless of its 'modernisation'the Chinese sights, smell people and atmosphere would be authentic. Then the only other alternative is for that same BBC to show off to his children about his British heritage that he was never 'accepted' as part of.

      Ive got an upcoming article that will attempt to address this BBC conundrum but re:rediscovering or visiting place of ancestry or finding a Chinese city, BBCs need to step out of their sanitised western comfort bubble and learn to reconnect. Its the best way you will really get to experience and appreciate your own Chineseness. Much more than you will say attending an Arsenal match or going clubbing getting drunk with a bunch of white mates

  6. BBCZeitgeist, I am writing for BBCs. This article is aimed at BBCs in Britain. I'm asking them to open their eyes to all the bubbling hatred around them and realise the word "British" is invisible regarding Chinese born in Britain.

    It is not about discussing China. I'm merely discussing examples of what is happening in the media. I disagree about the more we discuss China, the media latch onto it. Awareness is what I'm aiming for.

    It's (my opinion) through distancing we are blindly assuming we are just British nationals. I'm saying, we are not in the eyes of the west, hence my reason for mentioning spies, it's to show others how our loyalties are being reported in this country's press.

    So we don't have any form of strong identity, agreed. I want to start from the beginning and see where it goes. Sometimes, it's through collective understanding of our own prejudices can we start to form something new.

    You are right, I'm not a China national, but does that stop me from writing or speaking about China? I speak and write about Burma and East Timor, doesn't mean I have to live or have visited there. SF.

    1. I don't really want to diss this piece because SF is coming from a considered place, its a difficult piece to write because its macro perspective and vagueness of its themes, I just happen to disagree with a few areas and opinions as well as AGREEing, and good on SF for her efforts, it would take me a week to research and write it proper, its length would also be 10 times longer to do it justice, and it will be boring.
      I kinda agree mostly with Zeit point about being china-centric, that's what happened to DImsum it stopped talkin about BBCs for BBCs living in the UK, following on his comments, BBCs are permanently "british" nationals like it or not, likely to be living in the UK, if for example you find yourself in serious trouble in China or anywhere in the world it is the British Embassy/State that will ultimately protect you, not the "Chinese" in China, legally it makes sense, read the smallprint of your UK Passport it has some of the best human right laws.
      Having said that I think its important when you are talkin about the Chinese in China it so easy to lump them together as one when there are vast class differences... Ahem concerning a more micro BBC view in da UK, my younger cousins who just started uni (not a bottom league table like Middlesex LOL) are already mixing with some "china" students, of course they are not the typical exploited DVD/farm labourers mainlanders, but are the sons and daughters of the extremely rich (and powerful?) who dine out in expensive places and my cousins are enjoying their generous hospitality in insisting paying the bills, these are friendships and collections, i like to have had. Also I am invited to a BBC wedding who is marrying a "china" national, no way she is the Carrie Whalely type who is only after the passport and 50% divorce pay-up in 2-3 yrs time LOL. He intends to live in China and sees working in Shanghai. Perlease if SF starts going way of subject and ponticating abt Burma and East Timor etc then I am switching off, if the focus remains BBCs for BBCs I am tuned in...

    2. Anonymous 19/10/12:19:48, I'm not expecting China to protect the BBCs of this country when in trouble, but there is nothing wrong in pointing out injustice or unfair reporting where witnessed.

      My point about the anti-China reporting has affects and consequences towards BBCs whether others choose to ignore it or bury their heads in the sand. This doesn't necessarily mean I'm asking other BBCs to join in and agree with China and be the positive spokesperson for China.

      I want others to see where all this casual racism has been coming from. How British Born means nothing to the average. How it would be difficult to form a new kind of culture when we are brought up around bitterness and jealousy. Many just slip into the host nation's culture because it's better than standing out and realising something's wrong.

      If that means I'm harping on about China too much and the media will shift the spotlight on China rather than BBCs, then it has to be, because BBCs seem to be unattached to something, and I think that is politics and history. Both help to shape an identity.

      There is always talk about being sell-outs, but what is a sell-out when you are unable to root yourself to something first to form something else. The Burma comment was just an example, so no need to nod off...SF.

    3. British Born Chinese should think local, not global because our weakness in knowledge and reporting is local, most of us already know about global issues i.e China and Hong Kong, its well documented. 'Global citizen' reporting is fine as long as you're in the mynamar, but I don't see the point if youre in UK, unless youre writing for Amnesty etc.

      I understand why you think China can be used as a focal point, but in IMO, to compliment yes, but not replace discussions about British society. As HBC article highlights the problem with these fandom blogs is precisely that -a replacement, instead of writing and promoting and supporting BBC and BBC BC BEA culture in UK, they rather write about FOB K-pop music, anime, FOB drama or Asian American Jeremy Lin etc. Our respect and interest towards them is not reciprocated. They dont know about us, BBCs must be more vocal about their lives. I would like to read some 'interesting' humanistic autobiographical stories about BBC lives, not just news reporting, but I guess most BBCs live very boring lives.

    4. BBCZeitgeist, what you'd rather read about, I have no idea since there was no mention before, so if a discussion is creating awareness of our condition as BBCs that mentions China is considered boring, then what may I say.

      It's already clear that BBCs that are interested in Cantopop and FOB dramas can be considered a bit samey, now BBCs are their worst enemies in being overly interested in China and media reporting, what next? I must be leading a very boring life then. SF.

    5. I'd like to see/hear a BBC debate, with everyone on this board taking some time out of their schedule to go no-holds barred debate,on the latest topic in question, just as we do on here.

      If the group of us met up once a month, did a podcast, vocally debating our opinions on an article, rather than commenting,( or even commenting in addition) it would break the ice in a big way. Reason being that it would show BBC's passionate about Chinese issues which, to me, is the whole point.

      Afterwards we can record, edit and upload it to the blog.

      Barriers/Walls of invisible image perception need to be torn down, IMO. BBCs need to be heard ( if not seen) to have passion about anything to do with being Chinese.

      And as far as 'manifesto' is concerned, how about something as simple as:

      'meet up, all round introductions and pleasantries, how's your week been, order some drinks, set the tape recorder, bring out the issue, discuss, tape it, say our goodbyes, discuss on the blog'

      Anyway just an idea. First step to forming a social identity. And to add to Nuggets' suggestion below, I actually agree that meeting at one of the big C's is good meeting point.

      As Anonymous21 October 2012 21:11 point about different levels of agreement re Chineseness and whitewashing, thats true, but the important point is that a live podcast will demonstrate that BBCs can unite over social issues AND take pride in speaking out over issues that have to do with China/Chinese identity.

      Realistically, if we are truly honest in our intentions as about what we write on here, as an open group, we dont have much to lose, and a lot of respect to gain for each other, and from other BBCs for BBC identity as a whole.

    6. SF, zeit has his views and you have yours, you don't have to agree and vice versa, as a reader I welcome the differences and the free-ish discussion it ensues.
      I enjoy reading both and vary in my agreement and disagreement, and would slot in my views across when appropiate as now. imo most people live boring and meaningless lives anyway, my life is very safe and bland, like most people. The Jason Lau video somewhere here, OMG how boring is that, christ get off your silly motorbike and get to the point.

      Most chinese study vocational courses over 75% HKers study business type courses hence their consumption reflect their material interests hence their choice of media entertainment is the sort that gives immediate gratification, and not critical intelligent engagement. Non business types like me prefer a bit more subtlety and depth in entertainment. I can't stand cantopop or TVB dramas but i do like the odd HK film. I am also interest in china media reporting to an extent. But I read this blog largely for BBCs interests.

    7. "BBCZeitgeist21 October 2012 02:05
      British Born Chinese should think local, not global because our weakness in knowledge and reporting is local, most of us already know about global issues i.e China and Hong Kong, its well documented. "

      As a sidepoint, there's something peculiar about how many (not all) British Chinese people interact socially with other Chinese people, strangers, that they meet. It's as if they have an ingrained - completely unjustified - bias against them. So I don't want to talk/interact/get to know them because they're shy/geeky/boring etc.... it's like they're making up excuses not to know them. For a minority community it is extremely out of place. You will usually spot these people, they're the only Chinese face in a group of white friends. They just can't admit that they don't want to know their people, that they are effectively racist towards their own - so they make up poor reasoning just so they can hang out with whites with no guilt.

      You look at other minorities who are British born - most of them they actively seek out people of the same background/race/community, it makes complete sense after all to communicate and socialise with those who are most like you. But for British born Chinese, there are quite a few out there who look down on other BBCs and think "they're not like ME".

    8. For me its the opposite,on a public train I'll consciously look only for a Chinese person to sit next to, then failing that an East asian/ ethnic minority. Usually try to avoid loud twats of all races, so no discrimination there.

      Re: BBC strangers, you can tell in general we dont choose to make eye contact, because simply we dont have a common social culture, even if we recognise one, we dont know how to necessarily react - he could be whitewashed, moronic hipster, sellout, no idea where he's coming from.

      Coming from the opposite end, its no surprise a Chinese-proud BBC will think 'theyre not like ME' Its because if we have no representation, then of course you're going to compare how you perceive their personality to what you think yours is, because thats all you have to go by. This is the downside to enjoying invisible social status, but we cant complain because we chose it and continue to do so.

      Course, when it comes to issues being highlighted such as an article like this, when BBCs are under racial threat due to China's superpower and BBCs wont even agree to do a podcast over skype, then it seems even a potential national racial threat against us isnt enough for us to overlook perceived imagined individual 'differences'.

      Nevermind the invisible hand that can disrupt a group, seems its our own comfortable invisible cocoon thats preventing us from taking any action apart from when it comes to our own self-interest.

      Cant have our invisible cake and eat it too, unless of course it doesn't even exist to begin with.

  7. Nugget, Napo or Hippo20 October 2012 at 00:43

    I don't think anyone can fault SF for her "Fighting spirit" or supporting BBCs here.

    ...a suggestion, concerning this BBC identity empowerment concerns frequently mentioned. Why not form a small collective (consisting 4-5 ppl) or group to begin, with a consistent BBC agenda or well thoughtout manifesto? My suggestion comes from observing some underfunded pro-active "artists" ex-friends with shared interests getting together and forming a mini aesthetic movement of their work, once it gets going and increasingly established, it becomes a regular intellectual hub and meeting place to share ideas and offer support, beyond the confines of armchair blogger. what are my immediate thoughts at the mo, tbh going to the big C and trying to win more than I lost last week.

    1. HAHAHA you missed out the big 'E' which had a surprise lion dance introducing their flight to HK prize draw. FOBS staring from behind roulette machines with a WTF look on faces as the gongs started clanging and dragon twisting through waitresses and along narrow carpet

      What manifesto would it be? For me only initiative is a British Chinese diaspora online webisodes but that takes regular commitment and cash. Maybe can fund it with this weeks big C winnings? haha

    2. Nugget, Napo or Hippo, one step at the time. I'm sure that those that have seeked this blog may have a deeper interest in these issues affecting BBCs, and maybe looking for a more deeper debate about our situation than exchange tips on how to deal with difficult parents that get in the way of our lives, which is what I tend to see.

      Many ethnic minorities like to expose Britain's hypocrisy, because it stands out and makes a big point, and I would like to see more BBCs taking a more active stance on that. I hope to make people think about things again once the idea is out.

      I think the problem is, many BBCs are not suspicious of Britain. They take on their parents' views and welcome what they have, closing their ears to anything that 'might' be questionable. This is the reason for starting on a few headlines to get people thinking. And yes, it's about China and links China. It cannot be avoided because it links to us, even if we have the'British' title to our identity.

      Considering the many topics that discusses our identity and white-washing going on, it's more responsible for BBCs to question white worshipping than China Nationals living abroad because we are the ones born in the west, and we should be the ones to pass comment from our perspective. SF.

    3. SF this may interest you and others,

    4. We have two problems with the British Chinese (or indeed, any ethnic Chinese community in a minority Chinese country). One is how the majority perceive us - Chinese first and not as part of the country, even though we are more loyal than other minority communities (or indeed, some of the majority race there).

      The second is within our own communities.... partly as a result of the first one, we are breaking out and shunning, avoiding even being ashamed of our roots and heritage, instead "acting white" (regarding Chinese in white countries) so we can be accepted - it's never the case of other races accepting us AND respecting us for who we are (like blacks, asians have done)... always a case of US CHANGING to fit THEIR perceptions of how we should a result there is fragmentation, criticism within our own, rather than pulling together for each other like any other minority community would do.

      A "manifesto" would help towards the first problem - a bit - but it does nothing for the second one. Indeed, if we just lived as a tight knit community, interacting with others but ultimately settling with and having wonderful, proud British ethnic Chinese children that are not ashamed of who they are, then it will go some way to gaining the respect of others in the country who still see us as just Chinese (does anyone still remember that Wonderland programme on Chinese Tiger Mums on BBC2, where the white female presenter asked a white couple in Chinese school "does it concern you there's only Chinese here".... forgetting the fact that ALL of the "Chinese" were born and bred in Britain!).

      But because we are not doing even that, from the non Chinese British perspective, they see no reason to change things - racial and cultural assimilation, and they don't have to lift a finger! We're doing it to ourselves! You can't respect a peoples who willingly want to become white and get rid of their identity.... so why should they (and as an extension, media, society - and application forms :) ) change their view of us as simply Chinese? The rest will (literally) turn white anyway.

    5. Anonymous 21/10/12:17:02, I agree with you. This is why awareness has to start first and from that can some of us look deep inside ourselves to realise what we are doing to the future of BBCs in this country. It will be an uphill struggle because of our parents' worshipping culture and their desire for us to blend in, and that against the back-drop of media manipulation will be extra hard. But it needs to be done. Far too many BBCs grow up rejecting their heritage and only cherry picking the cute bits that sits neatly in their lives. But it's only addressing the face of things and not delving deeper into our deep-rooted shame of our race and culture. SF.

    6. It's odd because Chinese parents come here want their British born children to blend and integrate... then moan and are disappointed when they have a white partner and non Chinese children.

      And those who staunchly want to retain a Chinese identity with their kids go too far the other way - not recognising that Britain is now home and they are British. Thus being one of the reasons why there is no "British Chinese" that others have commented on, just one or the either

    7. Re: Choosing between British or Chinese, this wouldnt be a problem if Chinese in UK werent a bunch of cows sitting in a field earning and consuming because by now we'd have organised some kind of cultural artistic representation, to celebrate ourselves.

      However as long as we choose to remain invisible, consumer banality, apathy,racism, casinos, grocery-led assimilation the general all round patheticness will never end.

      But secretly, that's what we want, right?

    8. It's secretly (and some proudly) what many want. But not all. There are the folk who pretend that they want to associate with Chinese people like themselves, but they don't meet their "high" (i.e. impossible) standards.... they may be quiet or weird (which can both be applied in a subjective manner) - making up reasons not to do so.

      But as this forum has shown, there are plenty who don't want this direction of passivity and eventual assimilation into nothingness. But they lack the avenues to express and use their voice in a productive manner to get real change. For everything we have said on this forum, really incredible deep and detailed thoughts and directions, it has done nothing to change the perception of BBCs from others.... and from other BBCs.

    9. So why dont we arrange a meet up like I suggested somewhere above and break the ice? Even on skype?

  8. Maybe we should start a political party ?

  9. Regarding manifestos and collectivity, I think the problem depends what you want to achieve? Just to raise awareness of attitudes, or to politicise BBCs issues?
    Does anyone remember that London Steven Cheung (Spectrum Radio 558am guy), the side effects of his election campaign was to increase the BNP votes amounting more than three times the chinese community. What was his manifesto?
    I think individual BBCs attitudes also change through time, e.g. from having a chip on ones shoulder, to becoming a lefty militant, then when that comfy middle class jobs comes in, settles down to safe middle class respectability. Whilst others may remain with the chip on the shoulder mentality, or take unconventional life choices.
    I met a lots of BBCs in my life, not all BBCs agree and get along (I don't even get on with my BBCs relatives), we do not share similar politics, nor necessarily want to be a in a "chinese" community (like fobs vs bbc split etc Far east Vs West, Chinese vs non-chinese), there are complex reasons for this, class being one and differences of attitudes towards "whiteness" vs chineseness.
    Also Chinese culture doesn't have one strong shared cultural tradition, a religion, or a specitic shared history, that binds identity and collectivity at an instant, atheist Jews are able to feel a deep sense of identity because of their ritual gatherings and rich intellectual traditions expressed in great art, music and literature. There is no chinese equivalent, generally BBCs are borne from a generation of the uneducated lowest who take a crazy desperate gamble coming to UK. Go to into any casino near chinatown look at the gathering of chinese lowlifes there, somehow with their limited english are able to found their way behind a roulette wheel and place a stack of chips hoping for a big win, for me that escapism and relying on luck, defines their mentality succinctly.
    I think some people are over critical blaming BBCs as the problem of chinese identity, and not as a part of BBCs human condition tragic as it is, and expecting way too much from the son and daugthers of chinese lowlifes, who don't have much to start with anyway. I not saying give up hope but be more realistic.

    1. Anonymous 21/10/12:21:11, I did mention parents also creating problems for the new British Borns in this country. But, there is a common culture of hard work minus the politics. See the studies in the article, it shows how Chinese groups excel quicker than many other minority groups in most western developed countries.

      Traditionally, most FOBs should be Conservative voters. Their ambitions and work ethics would normally fit that of the trational Conservative. If many fled the hardship of communist lives, it's natural to see FOBs aspiring to the Conservative ideals.

      Most studies will show that minorities would tratitionally be Labour supporters. But because of the lack of Chinese voting, it's hard to see where they will put their cross if given the chance.

      Having said that, FOBs will probably vote for anyone that has a Chinese face. Are we tribal? I think the BBCs aren't so much, but the FOBs will be. SF.

    2. 21 October 2012 21:11

      You make a good point in that we are hardly homogenous, and thus these divisions do everything to pull apart the identity of British Chinese in this country. But that shouldn't be an issue. When I refer to blacks, of course they are not just "blacks". One from Ghana is different from previously British Jamaica. Whereas a Somalian would have no similarity other than colour to these two. But somehow, in Britain (and America), as a community, they stick together and ally themselves when identity is at stake.

      Maybe it's because of numbers, or because the causes are far more obvious (i.e. police discrimination vs. closet or everyday "minor" [eg. name calling, stereotyping] racism that BBCs face), but our differences really shouldn't stop us pulling together when our similarities are threatened by the majority culture/demographics. When you have many of our community WANTING to be assimilated, then that's clear sign we should be more tight knit and place greater emphasis on our unique identity.

      Indeed, if you follow sociology, in most cases when something like this threatens a group/culture, there is a patriotic reaction e.g. to call oneself Scottish rather than British, or revert back to your roots rather than whitewash your identity in the name of "progress". That is clearly not happening with a sizeable percentage of our people.

    3. Anonymous 22/10/12:00:45, well said. By being idividuals with all our differences should not be harming us. What unites us is our race and when seen in the past, as you mention, through adversity and attrocities, the minority ethnic groups bond and form an united front.

      BBCs have to feel that unity and bond, and that's what I'm trying to work out, whether it is there, because there may come a time when the unjust reporting and negativity will build to such a point, we may not be able to stay silent. When that times come, are we already merging in to become invisible? What will become of the future of BBCs? In order to build on an independent identity, we need to be more critical about this country when we feel things are wrong.

      We need to apply the equality that this country's education system taught us and use it. We need to be less critical about our differences as an ethnic group and embrace our differences.

      Being labelled boring comes from an indoctinated view that being exciting creates a buzz, and change or even a movement. We talk too much about world affairs, that's boring, we talk too much about Hong Kong gossip, that's boring too. The middle ground is getting narrow and narrow. Why limit this? If we don't have much to discuss regarding current culture concerning BBCs, then it's very telling, we have not formed enough through the other topics. SF.

    4. I remember BBCz told me once that if it wasnt for British Chinese Online being so banal that there wouldnt be a need for his blog. Aside from the tediousness of that forum, the structure is actually quite good. Regular meet ups all over the UK, meet ups in HK, eating together, activities. This is something we need to arrange, and stop hiding behind anonymous IDs and just meet up, maybe something casual, a drink, like I said earlier the Casino in London is a flexible place to meet up.

      The issues your article brought up, should be enough for us to hear each other and respect each other, even on skype. Ive always dreamt of a day that I would actually have a decent conversation with a BBC about politics, and apart from the conversations Ive had with BBCz, i can safely say I dont know any other BBC , who has this in common with.

      Weird as it may seem, even though never met any of you I value everyone on this board, and opinions from everyone who takes the time to comment, because it shows us as BBCs actually caring about talking about something other than the usual.

      Another issue is that many Chinese meetups need to have a practical purpose. Intellectualism for the sake of it, doesnt really fit in with that angle, and theres no monetary gain, but this is how small meet ups form, over time. Just learning to have an open mind and be open to whatever may happen. May take some courage, but no matter what happens, and what preconceptions we may have, as BBCs we can learn to forgive each other,because our individual political opinions grounded on Chinese pride will bring out our respect for each other. Podcast over skype!

  10. 22 October 2012 00:45
    Actually there have been niche chinese groups put together in the past but their interests weren't for the British born chinese community but for catering business, the only time the Dimsum site kicked a fuss was the foot and mouth crisis and remained deathly silent to other contentious issues, there had also some short-lived gps, legal/finance assoc. arts/actors etc there are also chinese community in existence like the one in Gerrard st. I not am going to give a tedious historial account and why it fails, a good account is in "Chinese Whispers" by a Taiwanese Guardian journo H-H PAI but its weak but hints on the undercurrents of I assume triad activity that underpin some businesses and gps.
    I believe its logistically possible but difficult to pull together as a british chinese community, its the implementation and personel that is in question, it will be likely to be a voluntary basis rather than with paid and trained employees following strict moral codes and practises. It doesn't have to be a great leader model but a collaboration of great minds, if there are couple of committed seriously passionate and talented BBCs out there, that know the issues understand the people, and not afraid of making mistakes, with a bit of front, it can happen. When that invisible hand pushes "us" into action I don't know.

    1. What do you mean by invisible hand? I agree gathering to debate should naturally be on a voluntary basis, and if genuinely passionate enough, should be no problem with turnout. Like the niche Chinese groups you mentioned, if it goes nowhere, obviously it's back to the blog, but at least there was a genuine effort made.

      This time though I think its a bit different, as the article states, China's success is looming. The vocal outspokenness of Chinese is actually starting to annoy the mainstream - you can tell by the appearance of trolls on this blog recently telling us we should be grateful for the Model Minority label, whereas before a bunch of accountants and actors had no political power. This time the onus is on BBC's to actually accept the privilege of being of the Chinese race, rather than hiding in the shadows of HK FOBS and be brave enough to be seen/heard to have an opinion, for once.

      Has anyone thought why there is so much effort to put down Chinese people? Regardless of our own lives as individuals, the reason we are put down as a RACE is because we are a THREAT.

    2. ^
      In general, the term "invisible hand" can apply to any individual action that has unplanned, unintended consequences, particularly those that arise from actions not orchestrated by a central command, and that have an observable, patterned effect on the community.

    3. As a response to the post below:

      I agree, we need to be better organised and more efficient to be honest, that is the key I think. There are enough bright minds and talents with our views , which i personally share, so i don't really see why it can't work out if we try.

      Actually there have been niche chinese groups put together in the past but their interests weren't for the British born chinese community but for catering business, the only time the Dimsum site kicked a fuss was the foot and mouth crisis and remained deathly silent to other contentious issues, there had also some short-lived gps, legal/finance assoc. arts/actors etc there are also chinese community in existence like the one in Gerrard st. I not am going to give a tedious historial account and why it fails, a good account is in "Chinese Whispers" by a Taiwanese Guardian journo H-H PAI but its weak but hints on the undercurrents of I assume triad activity that underpin some businesses and gps.
      I believe its logistically possible but difficult to pull together as a british chinese community, its the implementation and personel that is in question, it will be likely to be a voluntary basis rather than with paid and trained employees following strict moral codes and practises. It doesn't have to be a great leader model but a collaboration of great minds, if there are couple of committed seriously passionate and talented BBCs out there, that know the issues understand the people, and not afraid of making mistakes, with a bit of front, it can happen. When that invisible hand pushes "us" into action I don't know.

  11. See the link below. The title is innocent enough until you get to the bottom of the article. No matter what, the word Chinese makes its way into the text. Now whilst this is accurate or not but the "thought to" comment will not matter. No doubt, the headline will die away like many, but the seed has been planted. SF.

  12. I guess there are some jobs in UK us BBCs cannot do because idiots will be suspicious/wary of us, accuse us of spying when something goes wrong; regular sutble racism/generalisations/stereotyping etc. We may not even get accepted into these sort of jobs in the first place even if we're are much better qualified, just because they stupidly think all East Asians are spies or whatnot! >_<'

  13. Where does a BBC go if he encounters racism within an institution ?
    If anything I reckon racism vs BBC, guys especially is getting worse.
    It's interesting how White Brits' attitudes to other minorities are different, it's as they are scared of Chinese.


    1. AnythingGor, what do you mean by "it's as they are scared of Chinese". Do you mean that they don't mess with you because of your ethnicity or the other way round?

      As for encountering racism, a good question. There doesn't seem to be any kind of body that has been set up for the Chinese. I imagine it would be calling in the lawyers next. SF.

    2. @AnythingGor

      IMO reach out to other BBCs, like on here, send me an email ( my profile) Most times its someone to talk to, which if your surrounded by ignorant FOBS who have 'not made a fuss' about it all their lives probably arent the best point of call. Depends on what kind of institution it is and how serious itll take. Agreed, short term open racism is getting worse against guys thanks to Sinophobic Anglo/American media. Many females however can choose to sleep with the enemy which instead tends to have more long term effects.

  14. This is a bloody good article. Bravo. I think you hit the nail on the head there regarding the historical context.

  15. BBCZeitgeist thinks that most BBCs know more about global issues and neglect to deal with the local issues. If that were true, isn't that ironic considering high eductation has resulted in BBCs looking away and living in denial?

    If most BBCs behaved like black people and Pakistanis, would we get more recognition and a voice? I believe that the 'docile' nature is a product of education and parents failing to teach their children pride and their own heritage.

    Everytime the press make a slanderous comment about a local Muslim preacher, the Muslims come out to protest, they are visible, the take time out to show themselves. The black people may not be as highly educated, but through their parents pride they know a lot about their history and speak out as soon as unfair reporting takes place.

    But BBC culture and looking at BBCZeitgeist's comments, is to ignore China and its impact on us BBCs, deal with our own ignorance first. Actually, I don't believe we need to deal with our ignorance, because he's assuming we do not know our place here in Britain. I think that is underestimating BBCs here.

    The only thing is, we need to search inside ourselves to ask why we are not standing outside James Dyson's house with banners like "Racist". That's the question.

  16. Why would the spy "being thought to be Chinese" be racist? Did Dyson himself use the term or did the journalist?

    Have you considered it might be factually correctly?

    Even the incorrect title of this blog "BBC" uses the word "Chinese" to describe a person. Surely it should be BBH.

    BBC is such a naff term anyway. At least the original term it was copied from (ABC) made sense without having to reference the name of a broadcasting body.

    1. Ultimately, "British Born" in the English language means being a Chinese or being a Hongkonger, &c., is MORE IMPORTANT than being a good British citizen, and those who actually think like that should, quite frankly, pack up and go back to the Far East, because their lives are always bound to be miserable abroad.

      Children of most Irish immigrants in England don't usually bang on about how Irish they are, do they?

  17. Maybe you and other BBCs should stop being so petty and resentful and try to be more like the Mainland entrepreneurs and officials that are making their country the strongest in the world.