Chinese Internet buzzwords: part III

Updated: Mar 27, 2019 China Daily Print
Share - WeChat

打call (beat a call)

“Beat a call” has become the most popular internet slang in 2017, with Chinese netizens using it to show approval and support for people, things, or events. In October, Xinhua released an article regarding the 19th National Congress of the Communist Party of China, in which it called for the public to “beat a call” for Xi Jinping Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era.

惊不惊喜,意不意外(Unexpected, but not by accident; surprised, but not shocked)

This weird phrase, used to convey ambivalence, goes back a long way to the Stephen Chow film All's Well, Ends Well (1992). In the film, Chow delivers this classic line to Hong Kong's ingenue-of-the-moment Maggie Cheung. It has since been reused as a way to describe an unexpected turn of events or to ridicule dramatic reversals in a story.


“Oily” is used to describe middle-aged men who are rude, sloppy, and out of shape. The word first appeared on Chinese social media platforms such as Sina Weibo, and was later picked by netizens from a famous online article on how to avoid becoming an oily obscene middle-aged man.

The term emerged as a comedic insult, and like many of its kinds, an initially vulgar epithet became a self-ascribed identity, in a classic example of a group of middle-class youngsters who has no time for their personal life and care claiming the once derogatory term as their own.

扎心了老铁(My heart was pricked)

The word “laotie” originates from northern Chinese dialect and means “good buddies,” while “pricked heart” means “hurting someone’s feeling.” The phrase was adopted on some online streaming websites and is now used to vent grievances to close friends.

尬聊(awkward chat)

The phrase “awkward chat” refers to inevitable chats with boring people. It is used when the person you are talking with lacks good communication skills, or when your mind wanders off, and the talk comes to a dead end.

Copyright©2024 China Daily. All rights reserved.


京公网安备 11010502032503号 京公网安备 11010502032503号