Mark Zuckerberg Either Really Wants China To Like Him Or Has A Death Wish

It's tough to tell.

Facebook's Mark Zuckerberg has made clear his love of China, but this is ridiculous: Friday, when the local air-quality index (AQI) was about 300, Zuckerberg and his team decided to go for a run in Beijing.

"It's great to be back in Beijing!" Zuckerberg exclaimed, posting along a photo on Facebook, which is blocked in China.

(Hong Kong student activist Joshua Wong pointed out the elephant in the room — that people in China rely on VPN to browse sites like Facebook and YouTube —  when commented on the post: "How to update your Facebook in China?")

For those of you who are less familiar with the AQI, it means the air they took in was either "very unhealthy" or "hazardous." Unless, they wore any special sort of nasal air filters.

"Very unhealthy" air means that it can cause "increased aggravation of heart or lung disease and premature mortality in persons with cardiopulmonary disease and the elderly; increased respiratory effects in general population," according to U.S. Department of State's Mission China project.

(And if they were wearing nasal filters, that's a problem: they don't really work.)

So here's where it gets fun: if you pronounce "Facebook" slowly, syllable by syllable – "Fei Si Bu Ke," in Chinese, "非死不可," it means "have to die." It's been a widely-known pun among Chinese internet users for years, but now is it's time to shine.

By this point, Mark Zuckerberg has made his point very clear to the world – he loves China, like, crazy in love.

He's been practicing speaking Mandarin. One of the first places he flashed his Mandarin was Tsinghua University, one of China's top elite universities. His Mandarin was awkward, but he got a lot of encouragement from the audience to carry on.

Facebook: video.php

By the Chinese New Year last month, Zuckerberg's Mandarin had caught up with his Chinese-American wife, Priscilla Chan, and even surpassed her, at least from the way it sounded.

Facebook: video.php

And that's Zuckerberg wearing a red tie, wooing Xi Jinping, China's president, by speaking only in Mandarin last year.

Topics in this article

Skip to footer