A recent article, "Is the Chinese Internet Collapsing at an Accelerating Rate?", triggered attention. What's more interesting is that this article, which was first published on Media Platform of WeChat, was deleted by the platform. Some netizens lamented that “Chinese Internet” is really collapsing.1

Why it is Chinese Internet

What exactly are the characteristics of the Chinese Internet that would make a separate collapse possible? The article mentions that there are mainly economic and regulatory reasons. It is perfectly bold to say that there is only one main reason why the Chinese Internet collapsed, and that is regulation. If we don't talk about this characteristic, then it would be extremely unreasonable for the Chinese Internet alone to collapse.

Platformized, Closed

The article chose Media Platform(MP) of WeChat as its publishing platform2, an act that in itself is digging a brick from the wall of the Chinese Internet. Because the MP itself is not "Internet".

The size of the MP is so large that it naturally combines the best of the regulatory mechanisms. The scale of the platform is such that it can be “closed” to form a closed loop, but it still provides an accessible URL for external traffic, but the only thing that is missing from this page is the function of user comments. Inside, there are many anti-Internet features, such as not being able to use hyperlinks freely. Lamenting the collapse while actively digging for bricks is, in the end, nothing more than a traffic benefit for the platform. This in itself is also driven by the natural instinct to chase 'attention' for internet content. So why is there so much traffic on the platforms? It's still because of regulation that leaves most people with no choice but the platform.

Even netizens have used the know-how. Some netizens have suggested that premiering in MP is helpful in defending copyright against plagiarism in MP, so articles must be premiered in MP. This logic is a bit strange, if the MP is a just and fair platform, it will not confuse the first and original; on the contrary, it should not be chosen as a publishing platform. Imagine: in the Mapa tribe in the primitive forest, in order to be recognized and protected within the tribe from being destroyed by other people in the tribe, a newlywed couple must first dedicate their wives to the chief, who will make a promise to protect their marriage to the women he has slept with; so some people say that if someone on earth wants to get married, in order to avoid his wife from being raped by the primitive people of the Mapa, he should dedicate their wives' first night to the chief of the Mapa. How absurd this is.

Convergence and Economy

The internet has been screaming that traffic is king. If a content has traffic, it can be realized and has value. If a content doesn't have traffic, then it doesn't consume much cost. If it is not successful on the commercial side, is it not good to provide archives in a low-cost way, so it must be turned off and deleted? Not only tend to profit, but also to avoid harm. Ostensibly it's an economic issue, but in fact it's still a regulatory issue. Even the MP are willing to turn off comments to attract external Internet traffic, if there is no regulation, how can they shed their self-castration, they wish they could be like plants, make their genitals look like flowers to attract bees and butterflies.

Is the Internet a permanent building?

Let's jump out of the "Chinese", and look at the whole internet, is it necessary to keep everything permanently?

For a long time, every two articles I wrote, I had to delete one from the old one. Because what I wrote in the past, very Chunibyo, no value, no need to exist. Anyone who does that for me, I can only say, “I thank you, no need. It's not just about the language or the culture of the Internet, it's mostly about crap content that has no corpuscular value. Therefore, the future of Internet content can not be blockchain.

Taiwan translates Internet as "网路", so it's just a route. If you bump into a mobile stall on the road and come back here after a few years, it's just like carving boat for sword!

In the Chinese Internet environment, straightforward platforms cannot survive, so most of the surviving platforms are not good. Can not expect a platform has been like a living specimen has been surviving.

Value = Left

Li Bai's and Du Fu's poems are not just passed down to this day because of the number of copies printed. Valuable content doesn't die out with the demise of the platform, it will be redistributed to various platforms, refer to the internet content ecosystem. If a content is good enough, then it will live longer; on the contrary a junk content, should die a death as early as possible. There is no universal standard for something like value; six thousand people out of ten thousand prefer radish, four thousand prefer cabbage. Six thousand people dish out radish, the exterminator snaps his fingers, five thousand people die, and radish are still sung about. What is the value of a turnip? I don't know, but six thousand people dish out radish, so it has value.

If something that does have value is buried by a platform, or if the platform it is on is all but destroyed, that is indeed a misfortune. If its impact is completely obliterated, it's no different than if it was never published. There's no need to feel sorry for the content or the people after it's gone; either it doesn't deserve it or the people don't. You can't find it, and it's still probably in good hands with some internet hamster, perishing in some accident or being resurrected in some wave. For example, PKU's Li Xiaoming says they've preserved the history of China's Internet over 15 years of web pages3.

Please repost, archive, and cite those you find valuable, revitalize it, or give it more chances to be discovered and revitalized, that's the true meaning of the internet.

Inspired by Nostr

Traditional centralized platforms do two things - authentication and dissemination. In the Nostr network, nodes are only responsible for propagation, and authentication of content is achieved through cryptography4. Content here is inherently suitable for forwarding, archiving, and quoting.

I have a tyrannical theory: all Internet content, should not have the ability to be deleted with a single click. Once content is published and distributed, it should be extremely difficult to actually delete. You can state that you deleted it, but the original content, and the deletion statement, have the potential to live forever together.

First, to prevent censorship, should be free to say, flowers bloom (literally); Second, to prevent denial, after the fall when pulling the list you can not deny it. Of course, this is not to attract snakes, fishing law enforcement, here is not mandatory real name, the focus is not the traditional centralized platform deletion. But I don't want myself, or the platform, or archive.org to store all the garbage for “fear of deletion, save it first, maybe it's useful”. In Nostr, whoever wants to store it can store it for as long as they want. If no one does, and the content ends up being gone, that means it should be gone, so let it be gone. As they say in the Mexican culture of the dead, no one remembers, that's the real death.

It wasn't a primitive tribe before a recorded civilization, it must have been an unwritten civilization. It's only good that the Internet has collapsed, it's a sign that the Internet is going to really start to have a memory and a legacy.


The Internet is just a highway, and the traffic is just one side of it. When cars disappear, they're not all scrapped, they're more likely to be parked in a garage. So, is the future of the Internet better? Better, I guess.


  1. 知识分享官. 想看一下最近挺火的……. X. 2024-05-23.

  2. 何加盐. 中文互联网正在加速崩塌. cnBeta. 2024-05-23. MP.

  3. 北京大学李晓明. 随着开发大模型的浪潮掀起,我们这个200TB的数据……. Weibo. 2023-12-20.

  4. Dallas Lu. Something about Nostr protocol. Dallas Lu. 2023-03-09.