By Tenzin Dharpo
DHARAMSHALA, July 28: A Tibetan language news portal in exile with considerable readership inside Tibet has shut down amid concerns of Chinese government clampdown on readers inside Tibet, as well as financial and resource woes.
Tibet Rooster (Bhod ki de pho) in a statement issued July 22 said it is shutting down its website, social media platforms and micro-messaging engagements over concerns of Chinese government heavy-handedness and clampdown on its readers inside Tibet. The statement lamented that its content has unfortunately become a source of obstacle for some people and continue to be a cause for persecution.
Speaking to Phayul, Tibetan Rooster’s lone content creator and editor Tamding Tsetan said, “Since our content has become a tool for the Chinese government to persecute and harass Tibetans inside Tibet, I felt it necessary to shut down operations. The decision has weighed heavily on me.”
Running the website and its social media as well as micro-messaging engagements alone has also been difficult without steady revenue stream, Tamding said. “Until sometime, there was a limited funding from Tibet Fund, and that has also ceased. Without income and manpower, it is not possible to continue operations,” he added. The site has a respectable and steady growth of readers in exile as well, catering primarily to the Tibetan-language based readers.
The Tibetan Rooster, Tamding claimed, has a good and steady rise of readership inside Tibet as well with few social media and micro-messaging pages that voluntarily shared his content on a regular basis. For the safety of those who continue to be affected by the Chinese clampdown, Taming refused to share any details on the matter.
The site was founded four and a half years ago in 2017 and has over 39,050 man-hours put in for its content. 12,546 people follows its Facebook page and has close to 9000 subscribers on Youtube with 713,648 views for the channel. Its daily website clicks averaged close to 2500 clicks.