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> “everyone knows what 4 / 6 /89 signifies”

This annoyed me quite a bit. No I don’t. Most people probably don’t.

It’s the date of Tiananmen Square.

That's like getting annoyed when people refer to 9/11.

Eh no. Let me also be clear I say this and cannot remember the date of Pearl Harbor, Cherynobl, or a number of other major events.

9/11 is a bit of a weird case in that the name of the event is also the event itself... that usually does not happen.

Please label your dates folks (except 9/11 I guess...)

"Tiananmen Square" is the English name for the event. The name in Chinese is the "June 4th Incident", much like 9/11 in English.

Since the blog is in English, a "translation" might have been helpful; but since he goes so much into Mandarin, perhaps he assumes his readers are already familiar with the Chinese name.

That's just US-centric. For example, you probably don't know off the bat what happened on 22.06.41 either, but if someone buys an ad in a Russian newspaper encoding these figures, it would be perfectly reasonable to say "everyone knows".

"9/11" is not generally referred to as such outside the US, and would more usually be described as the September 11th Attacks. Also a date, but less numerical.

I'd prefer September the 11th. I can never tell from dates if the day isn't over 12 whether it's in american or everywhere else date format.

I remember the Fourth of July! And New Year's Day, and Cinco de Mayo. Not so weird?

I don't usually remember Cinco de Mayo :>

But you remember when it is?

And who's buried in Grant's Tomb?

Grant who?

December 7th 1941 a date which will live in infamy.

What happened on the 9th November?

As the song goes: "Remember remember the fith of November", but I don't remember the 9th.

...supposedly universal cultural references are hard :-)

In Germany, quite a few notable, good and bad, things happened on the 9th of November.

Only when you're clearly not the target audience.

That was the morning we found out Trump was elected.

> This annoyed me quite a bit.

Cool. You're on a computer. Look it up. Now you know (probably better than if they had just said it outright).

Why do so many people here choose to fill the comment sections with gripes about minor imperfections in articles, when those imperfections don't take away from the article as a whole? Especially when there's so much else worth discussing here.

Minor complaint about making minor complaints

Would Tiananmen Square not be your first guess for any date remotely close to 1989 though, given the context?

But a guess can be wrong. As somebody from Eastern Europe many other events come to my mind first in relation with 1989.

And why would that be in any way relevant to an article about a Chinese ad targeting other Chinese in China?

Contextually it's more than obvious for anyone even casually familiar with Chinese history which the audience would be.

Or the fall of the berlin wall, depending on context.

For reference, that is 9 November 1989.

Yes, I'm aware, was just pointing out the 'in 1989' part has 2 distinct cultural-landmark events for me

I gave the specific date so people can see the date for both in this thread.

I could place it with only +- 15 years if I’m going to be honest.

The point isn’t that you know; it's that the vast majority of Hong Kong people know.

A Day to Remember: https://vimeo.com/44078865

HKers simply refer to the Tiananmen event as “64” in Cantonese, read separately (six four, not sixty four).

Generally you're right, it's annoying if authors flaunt their brilliance by referring to esoteric knowledge, but you have to take into account the usual audience of that blog - it's language and (particularly Victor Mair's audience) China geeks. They know.


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