Carrefour protester (SMD)

An online campaign to boycott French goods is gathering a little momentum in the wake of the aggressive, torch-grabbing protests during the Olympic procession in Paris last week. There is more about it at the bottom of this Danwei post.

Below is a translation of a short blog post by San Lian Life Week journalist and popular blogger Wang Xiaofeng about the boycott.


by Wang Xiaofeng

I received an SMS from a friend calling on me to avoid Carrefour, to boycott the French people that have insulted our country's athletes on their procession. I replied saying that I have always boycotted French culture: I cannot speak French except to say 'salut'...

I never boycott any type of goods, including Japanese goods, Korean, American, and now French. My first mobile phone was an Alcatel. I stopped using it because it had a particular characteristic: the screen did not display any information, like a cordless land line. I also do not boycott Japanese goods, the first TV set in my home was a Sharp. I don't often buy Japanese goods not because of any patriotic feelings, but because I do not need them. If I need such goods, for example a digital camera, I will definitely buy Japanese goods. I do not like Korean goods because I think their stuff is much better looking than it is useful, for example their good looking but useless mobile phones. 

In fact, the best boycott is a closed door policy for the country. Let's go back to the Mao era: can you guys handle it? If you can't handle that, then stop making a fuss, boycotting this and that.

The best boycott is to make yourself really awesome (牛逼); if you're not cool, other people will pick on you. If you boycott someone when they pick on you, you're just pretending to be be great. If you like it, maybe you should go to North Korea, where they only have north Korean and Chinese goods. 

Using your purchasing habits to demonstrate whether or not you are patriotic, this is really "universal values" with Chinese characteristics.

When you boycott, you are just showing that your target is much stronger than you, that your target is already mixed up in your life. So what the hell have you been doing before now?

I just happen to have some discount coupons for Carrefour. I guess if I go these days, there won't be long queues.

If there is anything I am going to boycott, it's all these stupid idiots [arranging boycotts].


Note: See also this post of translations on ESWN: Kitty Shelley versus France

There are currently 24 Comments for Boycott.

Comments on Boycott

I never even new Sharp was Japanese and Alcatel was French. Good thing I don't want to boycott any particular country.

I support short-term boycott of French good, or at lease don't go on one particular day. Someone told me that Carrefour is innocent. Well, as a matter of fact, the handicapped torchbearer was innocent to, yet was assaulted under French politician's acquiescence. We were hurt, we are fighting back. Calling others "idiots" does not mean Mr. Wang is more rational.

To the point and oh, so true!

Why are all those patriotic Chinese still driving around in their Toyotas, Hondas, GMs, BMWs and Pugeots, yapping on LG, Motorola, Nokia cell phones and reaching into their LV, Hermes, Prada bags for their KTV or sharkfin soup dinners??

Meanwhile young precious Wing Wing or Poo Poo who is "studying" in Paris, London, Geneva or New York needs a new cash infusion into the debit card via the Hong Kong based HSBC account!

Wang Xiaofeng, I could kiss you.

I heard that some people are trying to expand the Carrefour boycott to target all foreign companies. Wang Xiaofeng's post seems pretty prescient.

Super-great Wang Xiaofeng: totally agree with him :)

Boycott schmoycott. French businesses in China get screwed even when there is no boycott. Danone must be wondering what worse can happen.

I guess the SMS that Wang Xiaofeng talking about is the one floating around now. The content of that SMS has nothing to do with boycotting French goods, everybody knows most of the goods in Carrefour is made in China. If Wang doesn't have dyslexia, the only explanation is he tries too hard to play cool, as usual he does, which is not cool at all.

Why aren't all of those who regularly call for individual political rights in favor of a boycott? In what way is a targeted boycott less effective, meaningful, or moral than a street protest? Darfur activists have been calling for a boycott of PetroChina (stocks) for years, not to mention regularly threatening boycotts of consumer brands which continue to support the Beijing Olympics.

Does Wang Xiaofeng think of them as idiots as well? Or is Wang's disapproval only targeted at fellow Chinese?

Only a couple of weeks ago, in response to the Tibet uproar, he said: 苍蝇不叮无缝的蛋白质女孩。And now I say... exactly.

Better than a boycott, how about actually talking to the French (or whoever the bogeyman is this week). I mean strong talk about allowing young athletes to realize their dreams and so on, not that pathetic drivel about "hurting our feelings."

By the way, buy Danish butter!

World's largest inferiority complex....

Instead of going on the defensive China should kill (metaphorically speaking) everyone with kindness. How about sending all us foreigners some panda diplomacy in the form of something actually useful like this "Panda Chair":


You Idiot. During Mao era, China did not close any door. In fact, because of the cold war, all the west countries almost stop all trading. And Mao invited Nixon to visit China. Stop talking bullshit without studying the history!

so what does "Mark" and Wang Xiaofeng think about Westerners calling for an Olympic BOYCOTT?

try Western inferiority complex.

Personally, I am a satisfied regular customer of Carrefour and am opposed to a long term boycott, but a measly 17 day boycott is doable and helps exerts a people's will untainted by the CCP meddling. It sends a message that the masses may not be able to vote, but we can still screw you in the pocket. This is a step on the road to Democracy and a greater civic consciousness.

Well well, lookee here! Why, its those Brits and their inferiority complex. Pathetic aren't they?

Nice post, but it's a shame the pun on 货 in 法货/蠢货 is lost. What about doing it as "Boycott French shit" and "boycott dumb shit" respectively (or "French shit" / "dumbshits")?

In reply to this comment about the 17 day boycott,

"It sends a message that the masses may not be able to vote, but we can still screw you in the pocket."

You will be hurting your Chinese compatriots more than Carrefour, most of Carrefours products are made in China, and what about all of the Chinese people who work for Carrefours.

The call for a Chinese boycott of French companies is indeed stupid, just as an American boycott of French wines and "french fries" a couple of years ago was. Seriously, who cares?

Just heard some French are calling for a counter-boycott of Chinese stuff. Some Germans are already boycotting Chinese stuff.

This world is full of stupid people.

Boycotting by a group of people has never achieved anything. But hey, if anyone feel like expressing yourself this way, by all means do so. When the American started to call French Fries "Freedom Fries", everybody had a good laugh.

The world isn't full of stupid people, just interesting, colorful people full of feelings.

Thirty odd years have gone by and so much has been achieved, why oh why is the psyche of the mob still so painfully affected by the horrendous infantile mentality of the so-called "culture revolution"?Just as the "culture revolution" had nothing to do with culture but the devastation of it,"such nonsense as patriotism & boycotts" have nothing to do with it either. it's all very very sick!I feel sorry for you poor souls.

Jen, Jen, Jen... I shouldn't even have to remind you that the US Civil Rights movement in the 60's was all about the boycott (Rosa Parks?)

So to say that they never achieve anything is a bit off the mark, although I would agree with you if you said that they hardly ever accomplish what it is they intend to accomplish. In China, however, they serve as an excellent political tool for the Party, as boycotts/protests against foreign entities helps unite Chinese people and allows them to vent frustrations that might have otherwise been vented against the Party.

I hear calls for boycott here in Canada everyday from people dislike Chinese products or China or the government. What is the big deal?

The Chinese is just stating their anger which they usually have no way to state in China. But this time the anger is to France.

I don't think people want to make Carrefour or France close down. It is only a voice from the public of China. The Love China flag in MSN is the same voice, and it is much softer.

Boycott out of control will make big trouble. But only ignorant and foolish men will think the boycott itself is a big trouble.

I'm sure that Mr Wang thinks that boycotts of any kind are stupid. I agree. Boycotts are silly, but feel free to do them -- I'll just be laughing at you and any boycotters as I snack on seeds purchased at Carrefour while watching the Olympics. : )

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