Aftermath of Dalian’s NIMBY Protests – A Threatening Company Email

On Monday, this vaguely frightening message dropped in my inbox. It was from a guy I know in the Property Department, but the instructions to forward and lack of signature suggest that the message really originated elsewhere. (the big bosses? the Shanghai office?)

It reads:

Dear colleagues,

1. Dalian’s city government has made a public announcement regarding the closure of the PX project, and is working on follow-up plans. So, tomorrow, Saturday August 20th, we ask all the staff not to attend gatherings or rallies in any shape or form.

2. We ask colleagues using various types of public media (microblogging, text messaging, forums etc.) not to use radical, open speech. The government department will carry out inspection and control, and can take measures to deal with this type of thing.

We also ask that the property department disseminate this message before 2 o’clock today. Because we are notifying you on Saturday, we ask the person in charge of each department to notify their staff after receiving this message.  

 

Original Chinese text below:

各位同事,
 
1.大连市政府已经通过公共信息渠道发布关于PX项目停产的通知,并有计划的进行后续相关工作。所以请公司同事明天(8月20日)不要再参加任何形式的公众集会,政府相关部门会对集会人员依法采取处理。

2.请同事们亦不要在各种公共媒介(微博,短信,论坛等等)发布过激言论,政府部门对此亦有监控,并会采取处理行动。

另外请产业部门对园区入住企业就以上两点做好宣传工作。

由于周六收到通知,请各部门负责人一定在收到通知后通知各自部门员工。

 

Since, as far as I know, there were no plans for a follow-up protest this weekend, this seems like an unnecessary threat. But with this message, it’s made clear that last weekend the public had its shot at public protest; the government doesn’t want any more, thanks very much. 

My deskmate suggested that this warning was about the Dalian government’s image. “If there are further protests, it’ll look bad to the central government – it’ll look like the Dalian government can’t control the city,” she explained.

The other odd thing is the use of my company’s email to get the message out. Did the government contact most of the big companies in Dalian, or is my company just trying to warn/protect its employees?

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