/ 09 April 2021

Regional alliance comes together over milk tea

Twitter has recognised the #MilkTeaAlliance by creating an emoji that will appear when tweeted, just like it did for #MeToo and #BlackLivesMatter. This time it’s for a movement that unites pro-democracy supporters across Asia. And a bit is going on at the moment – whether it’s China’s clampdown on Hong Kong’s freedoms, Taiwan pushing back against Beijing’s reunification ambitions, young people in Thailand protesting against the government and monarchy, and demonstrations against the military coup in Myanmar. Twitter says 11 million tweets have referenced the hashtag since it first appeared a year ago, and “to mark the occasion, we designed an emoji featuring 3 different types of milk tea colours from regions where the Alliance first formed online.” Why have supporters embraced milk tea as their symbol? Those nations have a popular local variation of milk tea – and China doesn’t.

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