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A decorative plate featuring an image of Xi next to a statue of late communist leader Mao Zedong at a souvenir store in Beijing. Photo: Greg Baker / AFP via Getty Images

Chinese censors took swift action to ban certain words and phrases from Weibo, China's version of Twitter, amid fallout from the Communist Party's proposal to do away with presidential term limits, the Guardian reports.

The big picture: The move shows just how swift China's autocratic regime can be, especially as use of the letter "N" was blocked from the service for a period of time. Victor Mair, a China expert at the University of Pennsylvania, wrote in a blog post that the decision came about “probably out of fear on the part of the government that ‘N’ = ‘n terms in office’, where possibly n > 2.”

Some more banned terms, per China Digital Times...

  • "Personality cult" (个人崇拜)
  • "Xi Zedong" (习泽东) — a mashup of the names of Xi and Mao Zedong
  • "1984" and "Animal Farm (动物庄园)" — George Orwell's two works on totalitarianism
  • "Incapable ruler" (昏君)
  • "Disagree" (不同意)
  • "Lifelong control" (终身制)
  • "Ascend the throne" (登基)
  • "Named emperor" (称帝)

Go deeper

Updated 32 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Inauguration Day dashboard

U.S. Capitol and stage are lit at sunrise ahead of the inauguration of Joe Biden. Photo: Patrick Semansky - Pool/Getty Images

President Biden has delivered his inaugural address at the Capitol, calling for an end to the politics as total war but warning that "we have far to go" to heal the country.

What's next: Biden, Harris and nearly all the living former presidents and their spouses lay a wreath at Arlington National Cemetery.

Inaugural address: Biden vows to be "a president for all Americans"

Moments after taking the oath of office, President Biden sought to soothe a nation riven by political divisions and a global pandemic, while warning that "we have far to go" to heal the country and defeat a "virus that silently stalks the the country."

Why it matters: From the same steps that a pro-Trump mob launched an assault on Congress two weeks earlier, the new president paid deference to the endurance of American political institutions.

Updated 3 hours ago - Politics & Policy

In photos: The Biden and Harris inauguration

Joe Biden is sworn in as the 46th president of the United States. Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

Joe Biden and Kamala Harris were inaugurated as president and vice president respectively in a ceremony at the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday morning.

Why it matters: Top Democrats and Republicans gathered for the peaceful transfer of power only two weeks after an unprecedented siege on the building by Trump supporters to disrupt certification of Biden's victory. Trump did not attend Wednesday's ceremony.