Advertisement
The VICE Guide to Right Now

Hong Kong Protesters Are Now Using Tinder and Pokémon GO to Organise People

As police crack down on platforms inviting people to join the march, protesters are resorting to creative ways of using technology to fuel the movement.

by Shamani Joshi
07 August 2019, 5:59am

Photos via Shutterstock and Pixabay

It’s now three months into the protest movement that started with people opposing a controversial extradition bill that would allow China to extradite citizens of Hong Kong to the mainland. But even now, protesters are persistent on not backing down and are playing around with different ways to make sure they stand their ground.

Ever since the unrest erupted in June, protesters have relied heavily on the use of technology to push their agenda and get more people to join the movement. It began with messages being relayed through groups on the messaging service Telegram, while others hit each other up on the gaming platform Twitch. But, now that violence levels have shot up, police are cracking down on these platforms, prompting protesters to think of out-of-the-box ideas to ensure that the movement lives on.

One of the new methods they have resorted to is approaching people to join the protest on the popular dating app Tinder, asking all those who swipe right to do the right thing and join the opposition movement. But Tinder is just the tip of the iceberg. One of the other cool ways protesters are circumventing police denying them permission to assemble is by saying that they’re just a bunch of gamers meeting up for a Pokémon GO session, avoiding getting caught by giving the excuse they’ve gotta catch ’em all.

Another way in which information is being put out there is by AirDropping it to random people who show up on the radar of proximity. The Apple mobile service that allows you to instantly send photos and notes to those around you is being used as a way to drop announcements to all unsuspecting iPhone users, urging them to be a part of the movement in a manner similar to the old-timey method of distributing fliers. This is especially useful to communicate with tourists caught behind China’s firewall, that would otherwise prevent such messages from being sent.

Other effective methods include posting on chat forums like LIHKG—Hong Kong’s rendition of Reddit and making subtle videos on Douyin, China’s version of TikTok.

Follow Shamani Joshi on Instagram

This article originally appeared on VICE IN.

Tagged:
Tinder
Technology
News
china
controversy
Apple
protest
ONLINE
Hong Kong
Pokemon Go
Movement
App
AirDrop
extradition bill
chat forum