A building management company has been forced to change the door code to one of its housing estates after residents complained that the number combination was “politically sensitive.”
In a flyer that appeared on a Facebook group for Sha Tin District residents on Saturday, the management company for May Shing Court in Tai Wai — Easy Living Consultant Limited — said they would change the pass code for block C from 8964, and would notify residents what the new code would be over the next few days.
The reason the specific combination of numbers is so sensitive is because it’s the short-form for the day of the Tiananmen Square massacre — “June 4, 1989,” — when Chinese government forces cracked down on student-led demonstrations for democracy, forcibly removing and killing hundreds of protestors.
Responding to the complaints, the management company appeared apologetic, saying their intention was not to upset people. They added they wanted to “avoid misunderstanding and disharmony.”
However, the company’s decision prompted netizens to ask how far such “sensitivity” would go and whether it would extend to an outright ban on all “politically sensitive” number combinations like 1997 the year of Hong Kong’s handover to China.
Some even joked that the building could still use the same numbers but re-arrange them to “4689” — “4” means “death”, and “689” is a nickname for Hong Kong former chief executive CY Leung. The nickname stems from the number of votes he was elected with in 2012.
Others also argued that although they were just numbers, it is still important to remember June 4, with some noting that even June 4-related search terms like 64, 1989, six4 and 6four are banned in China.
Easy Living Consultant Limited have not yet responded to Coconuts HK’s request for comment.