Promotion of former anti-graft chief Wu Guanzheng's book prompts questions

Wu Guanzheng

A book by a former head of the Communist Party's anti-graft watchdog has become a bestseller on the mainland thanks to propaganda portraying its author, Wu Guanzheng, as an outstandingly clean and honest role model.

Sunday, 26 May, 2013, 6:50am 1 comment

Chinese editorials flay study that showed domestic baby formula safe

A shopper browses cans of baby formula displayed in a pharmacy in Hong Kong. Few mainlanders trust the Chinese study that showed domestic infant formula is safe. Photo: Bloomberg

Many mainlanders saw the recent announcement by the China Dairy Industry Association that domestic milk powder is better than imported products as nothing more than propaganda.

7 May 2013 - 4:24pm 1 comment

Media reports of premier's visit to Sichuan quake zone show propaganda grip

Premier Li Keqiang visits a disease control unit at the centre of efforts to curb the spread of the H7N9 virus (left). Photo: Xinhua

The People's Daily published a lengthy feature online yesterday detailing how Premier Li Keqiang took command of rescue operations for the Sichuan earthquake , over the past 10 days, and analysts said it appeared to be part of a well-planned propaganda push to cast the nation's new leadership in a positive light.

2 May 2013 - 4:24am 2 comments

Xi will be pushed to make good on his China Dream

Xi will be pushed to make good on his China Dream

Ruling elites almost everywhere - whether in democracies or in authoritarian regimes - believe that clever sloganeering can inspire their people and legitimise their power. There are, of course, crucial differences. In functioning democracies, government leaders can be held accountable for their promises: the press can scrutinise their policies, opposition parties are motivated to show that the party in power lies and cheats. As a result, incumbents are frequently forced to carry out at least some of their promises.

19 Apr 2013 - 2:48am 1 comment

How reality has pierced through China's 'happiest 30 minutes' on television

Screen grabs from Xinwen Lianbo that show (clockwise from top left) a woman complaining about food inflation; a bare-bottomed infant appears during then Vice-Premier Li Keqiang's visit to a village in Inner Mongolia; a meeting about a demolition project; and smog in a mainland city. Photos: SCMP

Mainland internet users sarcastically dubbed China Central Television's (CCTV) nightly prime-time newscast, Xinwen Lianbo, the "happiest 30 minutes" on television, but there are now fewer smiles than before.

4 Apr 2013 - 8:52am 1 comment

Time for Beijing to stop its media propaganda

Former US National Security Adviser, Dr Zbigniew Brzezinski. Photo: Chan Kiu

The "transcript" of an interview with Zbigniew Brzezinski, the national security adviser of US president Jimmy Carter, was published in the People's Daily's English-language online edition. I put "transcript" in quotation marks because, as it turns out, it was not a full account of what Brzezinski said. His praise of China was published in full but his most critical remarks were left out.

27 Mar 2013 - 3:09am 9 comments

Lei Feng's spirit of serving others has lost its appeal

Visitors pose in front of large photos of Lei Feng in an exhibition commemorating the 50th anniversary of 'Learn from Lei Feng Day' at the Beijing World Art Museum. Photo: EPA

Keeping a diary about one's "good deeds" each day was shared homework for many pupils born in the 1980s. These assignments were given because teachers wanted to encourage their students to be like Lei Feng, a revolutionary who died aged just 21 in 1962 and was later hailed by the government as the poster boy for selflessness and being a model citizen.

10 Mar 2013 - 2:52am 2 comments

North Korean propaganda video shows Obama in flames

Photo: AP

The video came with a series of Korean-language captions, arguing that North Korea had been forced into conducting its latest nuclear test by US hostility. “The North’s high-level nuclear test aimed at US invaders, is the nuclear deterrent to safeguard our sovereignty,” one caption read.

29 Aug 2013 - 4:13am

North Korea removes Call of Duty copycat video game from YouTube

Call of Duty. Photo: SCMP

The video was "taken down by the user" after the complaint was filed by US-based Activision, the publisher behind the blockbuster military shooter video game franchise.

9 Feb 2013 - 5:29am

North Korean propaganda video shows New York under attack

A still from the North Korean video depicting New York in ruins after a nuclear attack. Photo: SCMP PIctures

The footage was uploaded by the North's official website, Uriminzokkiri, which distributes news and propaganda from the state media.

6 Feb 2013 - 5:29am

Tough-talking RTHK TV host silences propaganda fears

Erik Mak's aggressive technique has drawn criticism. Photo: Nora Tam

The weekly programme 'Face to Face' hit the city's free TV channels last month on the orders of RTHK's government-appointed Director of Broadcasting Roy Tang Yun-kwong - sparking speculation that it was intended to be used as a political tool. 

28 Jan 2013 - 5:41am

Letters to the Editor, January 27, 2013

Columbariums are now in short supply. Photo: Sam Tsang

Naysayers threaten city's development

The government has limited land resources and finds it hard to allocate land to alleviate Hong Kong's housing shortage.

This is partly because of the amount of land designated "green zone", where development is not allowed.

More land has to be reserved for building grants for small-house development in the New Territories.

27 Jan 2013 - 1:53am 4 comments

Hanoi admits to army of 900 'internet public opinion shapers'

Vietnam's communist government has an army of propaganda agents to infiltrate chat rooms and sing the regime's praises. Photo: AFP

After harassment and prison failed to silence Vietnam's dissident bloggers, the communist government started building an army of propaganda agents to infiltrate chat rooms and sing the regime's praises.

19 Jan 2013 - 2:47am

Beijing orders its 2.06 million 'propaganda workers' to get microblogging

Beijing propaganda authorities yesterday unveiled an elaborate plan to control discussions on microblog sites, a plan which places emphasis on monitoring and interacting with local users.

18 Jan 2013 - 10:25am

Communist Party is giving more power to members working in Beijing internet companies

Sina Corp's Party committee's microblog account on Sina's own Weibo microblog platform.

The Communist Party (mainly through Baidu) is represented by 2,680 Party members in Beijing's many internet companies, and late last year it decided it wants to have control over a lot more - starting soon with major players Sohu and NetEase.

11 Jan 2013 - 12:16pm