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China

Blog   |   China

As Beijing tightens grip on Hong Kong media, mainland journalists suffer

A cover of Time magazine on display in Hong Kong, July 22, 2016, features portraits of Chinese leader Xi Jinping and former leader Mao Zedong. (AP/Vincent Yu)

On August 1, prominent Chinese human rights lawyer Wang Yu, who had been detained incommunicado for over a year, reemerged--with an unusual twist on an old script. Wang gave a TV interview in which she renounced her legal work and accused foreign forces of using her to "attack" and "smear" the Chinese government; the report claimed she'd just been released on bail. The public statement of guilt without trial is part of an established pattern in China, with more than a dozen such "confessions" delivered by human rights activists, journalists, and writers. But this time, the state-owned China Central Television (CCTV) failed to play a role. Instead, the interview was carried by a website affiliated with the Hong Kong newspaper Oriental Daily.

Blog   |   China

China shuts down internet reporting as Xi's sensitivity begins to resemble lèse-majesté

A Chinese security officer holds the media rope as U.S. National Security Adviser Susan Rice, background left, and Chinese President Xi Jinping, right, are seated for photographers at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing on July 25, 2016. Xi's increasing intolerance of negative coverage has approached a kind of lèse-majesté. (AP/How Hwee Young)

On July 1, popular internet portal Tencent, in its original news reporting section, published an article on a speech that President Xi Jinping gave the same day at a conference celebrating the 95th anniversary of the founding of the Chinese Communist Party. One line of the article read, "Xi Jinping outburst an important speech." To any reader who speaks Chinese, the sentence clearly included a typo and its meaning was, "Xi Jinping delivered an important speech."

Blog   |   China

China's information and internet controls will only tighten under Xu Lin

Chinese President Xi Jinping, center, talks with Facebook Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg, right, as Lu Wei, left, China's Internet czar, looks on at Microsoft's main campus in Redmond, Washington, on September 23, 2015. Lu Wei left the Cyberspace Administration of China at the end of June. (AP/Ted S. Warren)

When the new director of the Cyberspace Administration of China, Xu Lin, issued on July 3 a warning that websites not report unverified content drawn from social media without facing possible punishment, it was clear that Beijing would move quickly beyond the Lu Wei era of information control. The announcement demanded that news websites provide "correct guidance for public opinion"--correct, clearly, in the eyes of the Cyberspace Administration, and ultimately the Chinese Communist Party. The warnings suggest that the harsh controls implemented by Lu could become even more severe.

Blog   |   China

In China, more journalists--even former ones--vulnerable to government wrath

A picture of Chinese President Xi Jinping is seen behind People's Liberation Army soldiers in Beijing on August 22, 2015. (Reuters/Damir Sagolj)

Most of the journalists imprisoned in China reported or commented on issues that the Chinese government finds threatening to its rule. They were likely aware that their work could invoke the wrath of the Chinese Communist Party at any time, but still choose to go ahead for the sake of truth and the public interest. Other journalists choose to stay away from the political red lines, writing and speaking within the realm of what is believed to be allowed--and they have generally been spared persecution. However, such certainty has increasingly eroded. Since Xi Jinping assumed the presidency in 2013, more and more journalists are vulnerable.

Blog   |   China

Foreign press in China say travel to Tibet remains restricted

While foreign media outlets were granted some limited access to the Tibet Autonomous Region in 2015, China still rejected roughly three-quarters of the reporters who sought permission to visit last year, according to a new survey by the Foreign Correspondents Club of China (FCCC).

April 27, 2016 12:11 PM ET

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Blog   |   China

Foreign press in China face fewer visa delays but obstacles remain, FCCC finds

The results of the Foreign Correspondents' Club of China's annual survey, released at the end of March, are a mixed bag. While problems raised in previous surveys, such as renewing visas, have eased, the responses show challenges remain for the international press.

Blog   |   Canada, China, USA

China's overseas critics under pressure from smear campaigns, cyber attacks

"I think my actions ... have harmed the national interest. What I have done was very wrong. I seriously and earnestly accept to learn a lesson and plead guilty," said Chinese journalist Gao Yu during a televised confession on the state-run channel CCTV in May 2014.

Blog   |   Azerbaijan, China, Iran, Syria, Turkey, Vietnam

On International Women's Day, CPJ recognizes nine female journalists jailed for their work

Syrians protest the killing and torture of women by President Assad's regime in 2011. The blogger Tal al-Mallohi remains in jail in Syria despite a court ordering her release. (AP/Mohammad Hannon)

Coverage of protests and riots. Revelations of official corruption and graft. Major natural disasters. Investigations into deplorable living conditions. These are some of the important issues journalists cover in their role as the Fourth Estate.

Blog   |   China

Read and delete: How Weibo's censors tackle dissent and free speech

The Chinese microblogging site Weibo has a huge following, with around 100 million users posting every day. For those living in China, one of CPJ's 10 most censored countries, the social network offers the chance to discuss and share news that is often blocked in mainstream outlets.

Blog   |   China

The business of censorship: Documents show how Weibo filters sensitive news in China

An advertisement for Weibo in Beijing. The Chinese microblogging site uses a large team of censors to monitor users' posts, a former employee says. (Reuters/China Daily)

When journalists at the Guangdong-based Southern Weekly found that their 2013 new year editorial had been changed, without their knowledge, to exalt the virtues of the Communist Party, they took their outrage to the Chinese microblogging site Weibo.

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