In "Chinglish in English?", we examined the expression "no zuo no die" and came to the conclusion that, no matter what it might mean, it has not — as has been claimed by devotees of Chinglish — become a part of English vocabulary; it has not even become a part of English slang.
No sooner have we dealt with "no zuo no die" than several other Chinglish "buzzwords" pop up, this time the allegedly hottest one being "you can you up". Here are some of the articles that tout it:
"Chinglish gains popularity overseas"
And here are the beginning paragraphs of the People's Daily article:
"You can you up, no can no bb." [VHM: In Pekingese, "BB" apparently means "nag; complain".] The latest Chinglish buzz phrase, having swept through Chinese cyberspace and society, has now made a landing overseas, entering the US web-based Urban Dictionary where it has been liked nearly 4000 times.
According to the entry submitted by 'gingerdesu', "You can you up," meaning 'if you can do it go ahead and do it' , is a Chinglish phrase directed at people who criticize others' work, especially when the critic is not that much better. The entry continues: "Often followed by 'no can no BB', which means ‘if you can't do it then don't even criticize it'".
Linguists say the phenomenon shows that Chinglish is now being accepted by the rest of the world and has been integrated into daily life.
Linguists say no such thing, at least no linguists that I know say such things. This is simply not the way linguistic borrowing works. A word or expression from one language is borrowed into another language because speakers of the latter language feel that it conveys a meaning or feeling better than any term available in their own existing lexicon, not because someone in the source language wages a campaign to get it accepted. But that is exactly what has been happening with "no zuo no die", "you can you up", and so on. Native speakers of English are not using these expressions. It is Chinglish speakers who are using them in their own circles.
Judging the popularity of Chinglish within English by citing inclusion in Urban Dictionary is like measuring the growth of Mandarin speakers outside of China by counting how many hundred Confucius Institutes have been set up at a cost of how many hundred million dollars to the Chinese government. The intent may be there, but the results are not. Large numbers of non-natives will learn Mandarin when they perceive that there is value in doing so and when the methods for teaching it are relatively successful and not unnecessarily painful. Similarly, large numbers of English speakers will employ Chinglishisms when they perceive that the latter are particularly apt for expressing something that they feel a need to say from their own vantage.
[Hat tip Ben Zimmer]