Millions of Chinese people flooded the Weibo microblogging website with thousands of condolences messages when hearing about the death of Steve Jobs. While the messages grew in numbers, Chinese users asked themselves: Why China doesn’t have a Steve Jobs?
Tons of comments were made, all in a very pessimistic and cynical way. And, as it happens all the time on the Chinese internet space, the discussion rapidly got a political, economical and legal tone.
Wang Wei, the China Finance Minister, writes: ” In a society with a authority political system, with a monopolized economic enrivonment, with a culture where technology theft prevails, can we talk about a master in innovation ? No chance! Don’t even think about it!”
China might be the world’s manufacturer but many are frustrated with the fact that Chinese companies are good in stealing original products then coming up with innovative and original ideas. The Steve Jobs commemoration made this issue even more important.
Former Google China executive and founder of a start-up named Innovation Works said that the China schools are focusing too much on memorizing instead of encouraging critical thinking.
“Not because the Chinese are not smart or they lack potential ( to become like Steve Jobs ). Look at Jerry Yang from Yahoo and Steve Chen from YouTube” he says, referring to the two entrepreneurs who were born in Taiwan and emigrated in the United States at a young age.
But, one of the most popular posts about the Steve Jobs legacy belongs to scientist Wu Jiaxiang: ” If Apple is a fruit in a tree, it’s branches are the freedom of thinking and to create, and the root is the constitutional democracy. A authority nation can be capable of building huge projects, but it will never be able to products technology and science giants”.