We may think of Winnie the Pooh as a cute, lovable bear who loves nothing more than to eat honey and hang out with his friends Piglet, Tigger and Eeyore, but unfortunately the Chinese government doesn’t quite agree.
— Jake Lin (@DrJakeLin) July 16, 2017
The reason? The Financial Times is reporting comparisons between Winnie the Pooh and Chinese President Xi Jinping are to blame.
— Ajit Ranade (@ajit_ranade) July 17, 2017
The comparisons first began to surface in 2013 when a meme comparing President Xi as Pooh-Bear and U.S. President Obama as Tigger began to circulate on social media. Since then, memes comparing President Xi with the lovable huggable bear have increased.
The Guardian revealed that China’s communist government is sensitive to comical depictions of their leader and searches online for “Little Bear Winnie” as the Chinese call Pooh, turned up notifications stating the “content is illegal.”
Likewise, Winnie the Pooh stickers have been removed from the WeChat messaging app sticker gallery, along with animated GIFs.