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10 Chinese Crypto Twitter Terms
February 21st, 2022

Author: Matter (Twitter, @MatterTurbulent)

Editor: 0xAA  (Twitter, @0xAA_Science)

I can’t read Chinese characters so when I found myself on Chinese crypto Twitter I resorted to translation software. The result? I had know idea what was going on. Were people trading meme coins at the dinner table? Why so many vegetables and meat?

I went on a fact-finding mission, asking the community on Twitter and speaking with 0xAA, a co-contributor at the PeopleDAO. There is a wide world of web3 out there, but because communities operate in silos, we don’t learn each other’s unique terminology. This article will help guide you through conversation happening on Chinese crypto Twitter.

Many of the 10 terms relate to trading, which will interest traders in the audience. Sentiment changing in the markets signals to a trader when it’s smart to either buy or sell, international markets included. But folks passionate about building should find value in this article as well.

Web3 prides itself on aligning incentives. Speculative energy can (but not always) overlap with spaces where builders are active and exhibiting a promising narrative. Knowing these terms gives a small window into what crypto projects Chinese communities are excited about.

Intercultural exchange is essential to web3 fulfilling its promise of developing social systems which transcend nation states. I hope you take my efforts very seriously. Let’s start:

1) “Leek”

Someone on Twitter told me “Leek can strengthen kidney. To say that you are a leek means that you are very experienced. Every time you bought a coin, it’s price soared like taking aphrodisiacs.”

You may have guessed this definition of “leek” is not true. LOL.

The term leek refers to the small investor who provides exit liquidity to whales involuntarily. So long as the leek does not learn, it grows back and gets harvested again. This mirrors how the leek, a vegetable similar to chives or onions, gets harvested repeatedly.

“You are a pure leek”

2) “Cut the meat”

OK, so if cutting small vegetables is a bad thing then cutting meat must surely be a good thing, which is what I thought. After all, possessing meat has historically been seen as a symbol of affluence.

Nope. Cutting the meat is what you do when your investment declines and you lose faith in the outlook: sell your bags and realize the loss. The choice can be painful, like a cut on your hand, but sometimes it’s the right move.

“Have you cut the meat recently?”

3) “Milk”

To keep doing something that’s bringing you favorable results. English utilizes the term in a similar way, as seen in the idiom, “to milk a joke.” Chinese crypto twitter takes the concept a step further. When you shill a token and initially the price rises but then later crashes or rugs, that’s poison milk. Not all milk is the same.

“Elon milked Doge coin once again.”

4) “Bookmaker”

Bookmakers are hedge funds, whales, and powerful players who enter the scene and control the market. The inverse of the leek. They not only succeed at playing the game, they may write the rules. Market manipulation, insider trading, etc. During the GameStop saga of early 2021 it’s believed the market maker Citadel pressured Robinhood to halt trading of the meme stock. So Ken Griffin is not only trash but also probably a bookmaker.

“Q: What do you do in crypto?
A: Bookmaker”

5) “Rider”

There’s an ongoing joke in the crypto space: Everything is going to zero.

When this happens we will be forced to get jobs at McDonalds to survive. Maybe I’ll go back to dishwashing at a steakhouse. On Chinese crypto Twitter, people say they'll become riders, a job delivering food by scooter.

Worse case scenario, you can’t even afford a scooter and you must find another way to deliver food. Ape fly together, apes ride together.

“I delivered 20 orders today, and bought the dip.“

6) “Ladder”

Because of national policies, Chinese people are blocked from accessing websites such as Twitter, Discord, Google, and many crypto websites. But VPNs, or, “ladders,”  can surpass the information restrictions. I was told the following analogy: if the Great Wall is like the barrier blocking access to parts of the internet, then a ladder let’s someone climb the wall and see what’s on the other side.

“Whats the best ladder in the world?“

7) “Scientist”

People who can code. May use powers for self-interest, like arbitrage, sandwich attack, or exploiting vulnerabilities in a protocol. Or scientists can apply skills to benefit people, like making a smart contract that mints NFTs efficiently. Because of their abilities, scientists are “high on the food chain.”

“My childhood dream is to become a scientist. I made it, in crypto.“

8) “Pull plate”

A plate refers to a market or ponzi game. When the bookmaker does something to sink the price, the plate is smashed. But when the price soars, leeks yell “pull plate” and go all-in into a shitcoin. May or may not end well.

“Leeks: bookmaker pull plate! LFG!“

9) Local dog

Watch out for the local dog because it will rug you. The term refers to scam projects launched in China that cheat local people. 2021 was the year of the doggy tokens. A quality dog is Doge, the golden dog. A local dog is a scam coin leeching off the hype for meme coins.

“And now the mar(ketcap)--Oh Oh Oh, it went to zero!”

10) “Iron bottom”

Some may call the market bottom, but most are wrong. The “iron bottom” represents the final dip. The true bottom is where you want to buy so you can ride the price to new highs.

“I'll buy as much $SOL as you have, right now, at $3. Sell me all you want. Then go fuck off." –SBF


I hope you enjoyed learning about terms from Chinese crypto Twitter. Ping me @MatterTurbulent if you know any more. What about other countries and cultural communities? Let’s continue to share and learn.

Cover photo by Ricardo Aberg Cobo.

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