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GANCube Cube terminates sponsorship of Cornelius Dieckmann

pjk

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Posting this interesting news here for those that don't use FB:
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Posted by Cornelius Dieckmann on FB Oct 3, 2019:
STATEMENT REGARDING MY RELATIONSHIP WITH GANCUBE

As you might be aware, GANCube terminated my sponsorship today (3 October 2019) and issued a statement that any remarks made by me don’t represent GANCube. Here is a short explanation of what happened.

On 1 October 2019, I made a post on my private Facebook account. The post read in part: “Taiwan has democracy. Taiwan is a country. Yet only fifteen other governments in the world recognise it as one. Why? The reason, of course, is China, a country that does *not* have democracy, and is even actively against it, as it’s demonstrating amply these days in Hong Kong.” It further included a link to a petition to the German parliament to ask the German government to establish official diplomatic ties to Taiwan (https://epetitionen.bundestag.de/pe...zErS86fAZBBj-FlhXlXSH34nZqtXtUEf6dGz4TJHKifw0).

For those unaware, the relationship between China and Taiwan is a fraught one. While Taiwan is a de-facto independent nation with democratic elections, freedom of speech, and freedom of press, China – which has neither of those things – considers Taiwan part of its territory and periodically vows to ‘take back’ Taiwan by any means necessary, including military ones. It’s one of the Chinese Communist Party’s sacrosanct policies that Taiwan is part of China, and President and Communist Party Chairman Xi Jinping considers Taiwan the missing crown jewel in his reign. (Side note: the WCA recognises Taiwan as a country, while CubingChina lists it as a ‘province’.)

Furthermore, China’s censorship and propaganda divisions are especially on edge at the moment. This week marked the 70th anniversary of the Chinese Communist Party, an occasion with gigantic symbolic significance. The ongoing pro-democracy protests in Hong Kong only add to the Communist Party’s feeling of nervousness.

As you might also be aware, when I’m not cubing, I work as a journalist. I’ve been occasionally writing about China and Taiwan in German national newspapers such as “Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung” and “der Freitag” for over a year. I’ve been vocal in my criticism of the Chinese Communist Party on Twitter, too. As a journalist, I naturally rely on freedom of speech, even if certain opinions may offend people.

I’m not sure why this (as I said: private) Facebook post ended up causing the termination of my contract, but that’s beside the point. While GANCube has not provided me with a specific reason as to why they ended my sponsorship, it’s quite clear that it was caused by my Taiwan post. Consequently, I was informed today that I had committed “a severe violation of the contract”.

I understand that it can be very risky for a Chinese company to be associated with views that differ from Communist Party doctrine, so it is not entirely a surprise.

While I strongly disagree with the reason, I respect GANCube decision and have offered to return any funding I received from them. I have never had any problems with GANCube, neither with the company nor with the people who work there. On the contrary, I was always treated with kindness and had a very positive relationship with them. They were my sponsor from the end of 2016 and supported me with cubes and travel funds, which helped me immensely in attending competitions. To highlight one experience in particular, when I visited their headquarters in Guangzhou in 2017, the GANCube staff were welcoming hosts and went above and beyond to make my stay there a good one (and succeeded).

To be clear: I have no hard feelings towards GANCube, and I’d like to take the opportunity to thank them for everything they’ve done for me. I wish them all the best in the future. I mean this. 谢谢.

At the same time, I will, of course, not take back what I said in my Facebook post (nor in my newspaper articles or on Twitter). I stand by the fact that Taiwan is an independent nation and should be recognised as such.

During my ten years speedcubing, I’ve competed in both China and Taiwan and made good friends in both countries. I sincerely hope cubing can continue to be a friendly community, even if political divides are sometimes hard to bridge. China is in many respects an amazing country. Taiwan is too.

Happy cubing.
 
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Bamboo Cuber
#4
I have to give respect, I’m a ABC (American born Chinese) and still heavily criticize the Chinese government and systems, and it gets me into arguments with my parents all the time. F
 
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B
GAN had to cut ties with Cornelius when they learned what he wrote about, if the government found out they are supporting someone who is anti-communism they could risk getting in trouble
But it's really unfair to the guy, he's doing his job... And I do see why they had to cut him but still. Everyone deserves a voice
 

Tabe

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I know it is just a sucky situation. That is why everyone in America should be glad that they have their first amendment.
If this happened in the US, the First Amendment wouldn't apply. It's perfectly legal to fire somebody because you don't like something they said.
 
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#12
If this happened in the US, the First Amendment wouldn't apply. It's perfectly legal to fire somebody because you don't like something they said.
Well that is why the First Amendment was created to avoid issues like that as much as possible. Plus the Second Amendment follows closely behind that for reassurance, haha.

P.S. Don't want to take this thread off subject so please try to keep it on subject for this thread at least.
 
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