BANGKOK (Reuters) – Social media giant Twitter on Thursday released an emoji for Milk Tea Alliance, a global online anti-democracy movement that has rallied against Beijing in Hong Kong and Taiwan against protesters in Thailand. Myanmar and elsewhere
Activists welcomed the announcement of an emoji ̵1; a white cup with a three-color background that represents the different shades of milk tea in Thailand, Hong Kong and Taiwan – for the first anniversary of the movement.
The Milk Tea Alliance comes as a result of a Twitter war following a Chinese nationalist accusing the young Thai actor and his girlfriend of supporting democracy in Hong Kong and Taiwan.
It is named after your obsession with these three sweet tea drinks.
The use of the hashtag hit its peak again in February following the coup in Myanmar, where demonstrators using the hashtag fueled regional support.
“We have seen over 11 million tweets with the hashtag. #MilkTeaAlliance Over the past year, Twitter said in an announcement that pushed the hashtag to rank number one in Thailand, Hong Kong and Taiwan on Thursday.
Earlier, Twitter released emojis for the #MeToo and #BlackLivesMatter movement.
Twitter’s emojis show global acceptance and give greater credibility to the youth movement, said Nativit Chotiphattharaphaisan, a key Thai activist who is one of the alliance’s leaders.
“It’s important to show young people fighting for democracy that the world is with them and that they’re making an impact,” Netiwit told Reuters.
Twitter is blocked in China and the endorsement of a violent anti-Beijing movement is unlikely to affect its business, said James Buchanan, a lecturer at Bangkok’s Mahidol University International College.
“Twitter has many benefits from attracting young people to an Asian market that is open to them,” he said.
Reported by Patpicha Thanakasemphiphat Compiled by Mattthew Tostevin and Ed Davies.