A researcher at the Human Rights Watch has said that the citizens of China are “discontent” with President Xi Jinping’s measures to control coronavirus have pushed the country further into a surveillance state.
Yaqiu Wang said that though the Chinese people are “proud” of the measures taken by Beijing to control the outbreak in the country, but there are signs people are fatigued and discontent with Xi’s extortions.
“I am seeing more citizens criticising surveillance techniques… Many now view the methods as too much and unnecessary… I’ve seen posts to Chinese social media complaining about the facial recognition outside their compound,” Wang said.
“Although we are seeing, slowly, an increased awareness and discontent with the state’s methods,” she added.
As per media reports, apps were created and deployed in the country’s 23 provinces, putting further tabs on ethnic minorities in Xinjiang and Tibet.
James Leibold, associate Professor at Australia’s La Trobe University, said that “this type of surveillance is far more human driven than it is tech driven.”
Wang said that facial recognition cameras have also been installed outside apartment buildings in order to record the coming and going of people, as well as anyone who has left and should not have.
“I think in general, across the board, people kind of accept the surveillance because they see the result in China compared to the West. Although we are seeing, slowly, an increased awareness and discontent with the state’s methods,” she added.