Han Han: Fifty Cent Party Must Work Overtime

Han HanHan Han is a famous post-80s generation professional race-car driver and best-selling author. He is also one of China’s most popular Chinese bloggers, and my own favorite.  — Fauna

From Han Han’s blog:

Are You Xiao Ming*?

I don’t know if everyone has noticed or not, but recently there have more and more Fifty Cent Party [wu mao dang] members on major forums and the comments of news sites. Of course, I don’t support calling anyone who disagrees with you “Fifty Cent Party“, but the Fifty Cent Party is very easy to recognize because people who’ve sold their souls, especially people who’ve sold their souls for cheap, have no [emotional] foundation for their words so even the climax [of what they are saying] lacks drama. When I first discovered this phenomenon, I was perplexed and thought it was just the relevant departments increasing the [number of Fifty Cent Party members], but I read a piece of news that said the economic crisis has spread to the Fifty Cent Party. Section 17 of the fifth chapter of the “Hengyang Internet Comment Management Methods” states that internet commenters will be paid 10 cents for each post. From this we can infer that across the country the Fifty Cent Party is being paid less; this could explain why it seems like suddenly there are five times as many Fifty Cent Party members: actually the people are still the same, but now they’re working overtime! Before, one often found that when there was a Fifty Cent Party member everyone could surround and watch them, but now with all the deletions and scrubbings [i.e., increased internet censorship], at some places one can now see Fifty Cent Party members outnumbering and surrounding [regular people].

Chinese internet users

According to classified files about the makeup of the Fifty Cent Party, 50 writing experts, 100 talented writers, and 500 other writers constitute a “fifty cent agency”. This outpouring of Fifty Cent Party members, according to my judgment, is mostly focused on those “other writers”, but from time to time a talented writer will come out to test the waters, and as for the expert writers, they probably have duties within the system as up to now very few of them have appeared. Of course, the main reason is that with Spring Festival coming they’re busy with social visits and receiving gifts.

The recent flood of Fifty Cent Party members is one reason I opened this Sina microblog, first because the reactions of the Fifty Cent Party are relatively slow and I think that to many “talented writers” registering and logging into QQ is already the most they can do. Besides, on microblogs, you cannot speak anonymously and they are afraid to register. Moreover, if they perform well on microblogs, the authorities may notice and ask them to use their cell phones to guide public opinion moment by moment. To them, this is a disaster: at first it was 10 cents for one post, and that was good, but sending a text message to influence [public opinion] costs ten cents, plus there’s the cost of electricity for charging their phones, anyway they’re losing a little bit of money. Don’t ridicule them, they sell themselves for one mao, for a thousand kuai they would sell a kidney; to them, a little money is still money. They are truly living at the lowest level of society, but they are the species with ideology that most directly aligns with that of the ruling class.

Chinese internet user

I have a different reading of the Fifty Cent Party. First, I feel we should permit the Fifty Cent Party to exist; everyone has the right to hire someone else to speak for them and those hired have the right to speak anywhere they please. If you can beat Xiao Ming* once, and then with the money stolen off of him hire someone to curse him once, that counts as a talent. Every government has a mechanism for propagating their perspective, [so] that is excusable. But the Fifty Cent Party is the government’s mistake, before I thought they existed to guide public opinion, but it seems I was wrong, because you wouldn’t, upon seeing a crowd of people eating shit, squeeze your way in to have a bite yourself. The Fifty Cent Party is a result of the higher levels toadying to the highest level, but in the wake of the Fifty Cent Party’s rampage, many glorious and correct personages need only to open their mouths, which clearly costs nothing, and they become [referred to as] Fifty Cent Party members, which greatly hurts their enthusiasm. Originally, if you went into a hotel and booked a room for a one night stand, when you came out the next morning the whole world would call you a chicken [i.e. dick], this goes without saying. If you suddenly found the Fifty Cent Party, [… suddenly] all of your former supporters are suspicious of the Fifty Cent Party. Why do I rarely praise the government? First, I fear being called a Fifty Cent Party member; second, if you criticize the lack of freedom then praise is meaningless; third, I have already paid my taxes, and the people’s taxes pay the fees of the Fifty Cent Party, which is equivalent to me indirectly supporting the government.

Finally, in the future, I will choose some [comments on this post] and differentiate which were written by “other writers”, which were written by “talented writers”, which were written by patriotic youths, which were written by ignorant young girls, which were unhappily written, which were brainlessly written. But if I wrong you, you volunteered. Who made your master think that an opinion the same as yours was worth ten cents?

Fake wu mao bill with cao ni ma

* Note: Opinions seem divided on what Han Han means by “Xiao Ming”. See this post for some discussion and varying theories. One theory is that it’s just a stand-in name to represent the person could be anyone.

Han Han’s blog post is no longer publicly available without a password on his Sina blog. A copy can be seen on KDS.

Responses on Han Han’s blog:


Replying to Han Han, I am not Xiao Ming!


Looks like the situation for the Fifty Cent Party is getting more and more unbearable.


I am a Fifty Cent Party member, but the money is too little so I quit, thanks everyone!


Whether it’s fifty cents or ten cents, if they can spray shit [onto message boards, etc.] then they’re a good party member.


Do you mean to say that the Fifty Cent Party has been on your blog recently? Quickly pick out a few so we can surround them…


Very brave, but I still think that the government will secretly kill you…


I support Han Han.



This post was translated by C. Custer, the editor of the analysis and translation blog ChinaGeeks.

A better party. chinaSMACK personals.


Written by C. Custer

C. Custer is a full-fledged China enthusiast whose interests include literature, history, language, and philosophy. He graduated from Brown in 2008 with a B.A. in East Asian Studies, and is currently teaching Chinese in New England and administering ChinaGeeks, a China translation, news, and analysis blog.


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