When I was in Hong Kong / Shenzhen, the friends I was visiting worked for a non-profit that had to be very careful about mentioning anything religious, as they could apparently lose funding from the government of China.

Are there particular topics of conversation that will get you into trouble (with authorities) that are specific to China?

  • 1
    What "openly" stands for?
    – Him
    Dec 19, 2015 at 20:06
  • 2
    This isn't about China, it's about your organization. As a person, I'm free to say almost anything I want; but when representing my employer, what I can say is very limited. Dec 19, 2015 at 21:35
  • 1
    HK is for all purposes a separate country with complete freedom of speech. Sure you can suffer economic losses for offending someone but that is no different from in the US or Europe.
    – user8803
    Dec 20, 2015 at 1:47

1 Answer 1


The main ones I could think of are (can be applied to any foreign land):

  • Never talk about politics & religion.
  • Never talk bad about women / class / races.
  • Never make negative comments on their culture, food, habits, norms.
  • Never talk about the army or the police, spies and government.

Btw, I have never been to China, although have traveled other few countries as tourist, and always made a point to stick to neutral point of views while enjoying their history, culture, food and surroundings.

  • 2
    I once asked a policemen in another country whether he could tell me how to get to some tourist attraction (can't remember which). When I mentioned it later to my friend, he was appalled. "Talking to police is asking for trouble!"
    – WGroleau
    Dec 20, 2015 at 1:58

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