Is a crackdown on WeChat stickers imminent?
That's what some Chinese state media are hoping. In a commentary piece posted on October 15, the People's Daily called for the regulation of stickers due to their sometimes "erotic, violent and negative" nature.
Sixth Tone reports that WeChat now has over 4,500 sticker sets, some of which are user-generated. They are downloaded 20 million times a day.
The People's Daily piece also argues that many stickers use slang, which is confusing to people who study Chinese. They pointed to one set of stickers in particular, which captures the expressions of Olympic swimmer and online sensation Fu Yuanhui.
A spokesperson for WeChat told Sixth Tone that stickers submitted to their app go through a strict review to screen "vulgar, sexual, violent, or otherwise harmful to 'society’s positive development'":
"The stickers that are submitted to WeChat are examined through manual review to ensure their compliance with national policy and our platform’s operating rules.”