Then, to pay their respects to the dead, many websites 'spontaneously' converted pages to greyscale ('spontaneous' in quotation marks since the same one-day-transformation also followed the 2008 Sichuan Earthquake). It was a strange time. Sad because of the lost lives. Bewildering because China has to bury many more so soon after the 2008 catastrophe. And angry, because some people felt the 'coerced mourning' was at once hypocritical and an exercise of tyrannical power.
1. Screenshot of PConline on April 21
2. Screenshot of sina on April 21
3. A Chinese actor's (陈道明) official forum
4. Due to different levels of technical skills, some webpages were still partially colored. For instance, Kaixin001
5. In very little time, Netizens realized that the government site, the one who dared to spit in the face of peer pressure, was still brightly colored. This was one discovery that drew some sarcastic remarks.
For the most part, people grieved.
sina microblogger Realyl wrote:
Grey! My heart is filled with grey.
Why didn't my Renren account turn grey? I am losing face!
Not sure why, after seeing so much grey on line, I feel a great weight in my heart. Tears well up. Although I couldn't obtain any news directly, I still know that whenever there is disaster, pain and wounds exist. Not able to do much, I can only pray for the deceased....
Not everyone felt the same though.
"扫扫" wrote:Some were plainly confused:
microblogger "若阳" wrote:
Once more, this Yushu thing allowed me to see coercion by the government. No matter which TV channel I switched to last night, I could only watch the same program. Then, at midnight, the whole internet greyed out, but some color remained, like sarcasm.
It is not that I don't have a conscience. But this is just too much, too exaggerated. No use grieving. We should grieve on our own, whereas this is merely a show.
Also, a day after the Official Mourning, hecaitou delineated two opposing views: the minority who questioned the government's right to force them to mourn in a specific way vs. the majority who view this minority group as troublemakers.