Remembering Lee Kuan Yew

A look back at social media in a week of national mourning for Mr Lee Kuan Yew

SINGAPORE - Singapore's founding father Lee Kuan Yew died on March 23 at the age of 91. As the country went into a week of mourning, they shared their grief on social media in several ways.

Netizens dedicated tributes to Mr Lee, posted photos and created original videos and art works. The history of what he had done for Singapore and past interviews he had given were circulated widely, while his quotes became a mainstay on social media sites.

By Sunday, March 29, the hashtags #lky, #LeeKuanYew #RememberingLKY, #TributeLKY and #riplky became familiar on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

On Instagram, #LKY turned up more than 28,000 posts, #riplky had more than 38,000, and #RememberingLKY about 40,000.

On Facebook, an image of a black ribbon framing Mr Lee's profile became synonymous with national mourning, as people made it their profile photos.

Created by Chua Chu Kang GRC MP Alex Yam and his team, the image even spun off car decals, tattoos and brooches.

A sombre greyscale or black profile photo on Facebook also became a way for companies both here and overseas, to pay tribute to Mr Lee.

As Mr Lee's body lay in state at Parliament House from Wednesday, March 25, "Parliament House" became buzz words on Twitter.

Queues made the photos of the day, as people formed snaking lines waiting for up to 10 hours, sometimes in the scorching sun, to pay their last respects to him.

When the entrance to the Parliament House was shifted to the Padang from the riverside Promenade on Thursday, March 26, "Padang" also became a buzz word on Twitter.

Photos of snaking queues were shared constantly, and soon, photos of kind volunteeers distributing food, water and even umbrellas became a staple.

As Sunday approached, "State Funeral" became popular on Twitter, as people spread the news on what was to happen on the day.

Netizens also started "movements" for people to wear black or white on Sunday as a mark of respect for the late Mr Lee, and for them to put their phones away as they witnessed his state funeral procession.

On Sunday, the mood on social media was sombre as people prepared for Mr Lee's final journey, a procession that would cover 15.4km and pass significant landmarks, such as Old Parliament House, City Hall and the Padang.




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