K-pop singers Lay Zhang, Jackson Wang, Lai Kuan-lin and Victoria Song were among those who posted a Chinese flag on their official Weibo accounts and announced they were "one of 1.4 billion guardians of the Chinese flag." Wang is from Hong Kong and Lai is from Taiwan. Weibo is one of China's biggest social media platforms and often referred to as the country's version of Twitter.
One view on the recent spate of patriotic posts from the music stars is that it is an illustration of how celebrities and companies are pressured into following Chinese policy, or seeing it as a marketing ploy. Erika Ng, a 26-year-old Hong Kong fan of Jackson Wang, told AP she was not surprised. She said Wang "values the China market more than the Hong Kong market" because of his large presence there.
Both Song and Zhang, a vocalist in the Chinese-Korean pop group EXO, have shown their national pride on Instagram. Song uploaded an image of the Chinese flag last week stating "Hong Kong is part of China forever."
Such posts can only be viewed by their international fans because Instagram, like many other non-Chinese social media, is blocked by the Chinese government.
Two sides to every record
There are pop stars on both sides of the political divide, though, as Cantopop singer Denise Ho ably demonstrates. She was successful in the Chinese market until she joined Hong Kong's pro-democracy movement.