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China’s U.S.-Born Skater Zhu Yi Faces Online Vitriol After Falls

Bloomberg business news
WATCH: Figure skater Zhu Yi was the subject of online abuse after she fell during her performances. Kurumi Mori reports.Source: Bloomberg

Online abuse heaped on China’s U.S.-born figure skater Zhu Yi after she fell during her programs is highlighting the intense nationalism that host-nation athletes must navigate at the Beijing Winter Olympics.

Zhu’s performance during the women’s free-skate team event Monday, in which she fell for a second day, was denounced as a “disgrace” by users of the Twitter-like Weibo platform, who questioned why the 19-year-old was selected over a Chinese-born athlete. The hashtags “Zhu Yi’s consecutive mistakes” and “Zhu Yi tears up again on the ice” saw tens of millions of views on Weibo by Monday afternoon, with some commenting that the games weren’t a platform for practice.