Thousands of mainland netizens are backing an online call to boycott French companies, including a May 1 rally outside branches of supermarket giant Carrefour, in response to disruptions on the Paris leg of the Olympic torch relay. 'Resolutely support strong-armed crackdowns on Tibetan independence and impose harsh punishment on countries and organisations that back them [independence-leaning Tibetans],' Beijing-based netizen 'Old Mao' wrote on a community bulletin board on Thursday. Calls for boycotts of French goods have triggered overwhelming response on mainland websites since officials were forced to extinguish the Olympic flame several times amid chaos. Asked why he was so angry, Old Mao said: 'I know France is a country in which people enjoy freedom to a large extent. I can understand and tolerate demonstrations like chanting slogans or unfurling banners alongside the route of the flame journey. 'But when the protesters publicly attack the torch, it's completely another thing. It's no more an issue about freedom, but a matter of turning a blind eye to such violence.' The 30-year-old finance sector worker said he was not only disappointed with French media reports over the incident, but also with the attitudes of the Parisian municipal government and some French parliamentarians. 'They simply rejoiced in the calamity of others,' Old Mao said. Some mainland internet comments have also attacked western media coverage of the unrest in Tibet, insisting it is biased towards pro-independence groups and has ignored cheering Chinese and foreign spectators to focus on protests. 'Chinese people will never put up with such humiliation easily,' Old Mao said. 'I will not show you any face if you don't do the same for me.' He said he had boycotted Carrefour since Thursday. A blogger posted one anti-French entry under the title: 'Resist Carrefour, the French must pay for its humiliation of China'. Some online campaigners began suggesting people rally in front of mainland branches of the French superstore on May 1 and persuade customers not to shop there. A Carrefour spokesman could not be reached for comment yesterday. Calls to the French embassy in Beijing were unanswered. 'Some internet surfers even proposed destroying the car badges of French-made vehicles including Citroen and Peugeot, but I don't agree with them,' Old Mao said. 'I do advocate boycotting French luxury brands such as LV, Chanel, Dior and L'Oreal.'