Decision concerning Revising the “Information Network Dissemination Right Protection Regulations”

People’s Republic of China State Council Decree

No. 634.

The “State Council Decision concerning Revising the ‘Information Network Dissemination Right Protection Regulations'” was passed at the 231st Business Meeting of the State Council on 16 January 2013, is hereby promulgated, and takes effect on 1 March 2013.

Premier: Wen Jiabao

30 January 2013 Continue reading

Internet Instructions – August 2007 (IV)

29 August 2007, 18:58:02

Reporting requirements concerning the readjustment of the positions of comrade Jin Renqing; websites are to use Xinhua information without exception, and may not reprint reports from any other source; do not set up special subjects, do not issue it on the main page of websites and the important news section of the news centre, it may be issued in the domestic section, let it remain there until 12:00 in the evening; strictly manage trackers, examine all posts before publishing, quantities may not exceed 50, firmly delete all harmful information seizing upon the opportunity to attack Party and State leaders, attack our country’s political system, social system and the Party’s cadre system; forum, blogs, instant messaging, post bars and other interactive segments are not to actively set up topics, information and comments from foreign websites may not be posted; all search engines will direct searches for “Jin Renqing” to news websites, do not set up related searches. Continue reading

Information Security Technology Guidelines for Personal Information Protection on Public and Commercial Service Information Systems

Includes explanatory notes published by the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology.

Our country’s first national personal information protection standards, the “Information Security Technology Guidelines for Personal Information Protection on Public and Commercial Service Information Systems” will be implemented from 1 February 2013. The said standard’s clearest characteristic is that, before sensitive personal information is collected and used, the clear authorization of the subject of that personal information must be obtained in advance.

The Ministry of Industry and Information Technology Information Security Coordination Department’s vice-director Ouyang Wu said, at a teaching meeting on national standards for personal information protection, that these standards are put forward and specifically organized by the National Information Security Standardization Technology Committee, the China Software Observation Centre took the lead in formulating them jointly with many work units. The said standards are our country’s first national standards concerning personal information protection, and were published last year in November. Continue reading

Internet Instructions – August 2007 (III)

14 August 2007, 13:35:33, Huang Jing

All websites, please submit the work plan for your websites for the period of the 17th Party Congress before 4.00 PM in the afternoon of this Friday (17 August) to our office (huangjing@bjwgb.gov.cn), the content includes: 1, the responsible person; 2, work mechanisms; 3, emergency response mechanisms.

14 August 2007, 18:02:00, Chen Hua

Concerning the incident of the Phoenix Bridge collapse in Hunan, do not issue it on the main pages of websites and the important news section of news centres, it may be issued in the domestic section, let it roll away naturally, use standard copy sources (original sources), manage trackers well. Continue reading

“New Four Modernizations” Point to Hukou Reform, Food Security and Social Services

In my previous post, I talked about the “Eight Musts” and the “Five Cardinal Principles”, which outline the political agenda of the Xi administration. In this post, I noted that, in the realm of economics, we would need to look at the concrete measures and plans that the new leadership will put forward. Today, another People’s Daily article introduces the “Four New Modernizations”, which were presented by Li Keqiang on a visit to the State Administration of Grain. As with the “Eight Musts” and the “Five Cardinal Principles”, I believe this is an important policy proposition, as it directly refers to and updates the economic programme that Deng instituted now more than three decades ago. This is a decision that will not have been taken lightly.

The new four modernizations are the following:

  • new industrialization (referring to the development of IT, green technology and other burgeoning sectors)
  • informatization
  • urbanization
  • agricultural modernization Continue reading

Media Analysis of the New Meanings of the “New Four Modernizations”: From Giving First Place to Materials to Putting People First

(People’s Daily, 17 January 2013)

Where Are the New Ideas of the “New Four Modernizations?”

The first “new”, a strategic focus on going from stressing development objectives to stressing development trajectories.

The second “new”, a development concept changing from “first place to materials” to “putting people first”.

The third “new”, the relationship of the “Four Modernizations” changes from mutual independence to an integrated mix, to complement each other.

Dreams encourage people to advance, realizing them require being earnest and down-to-earth. The magnificent ideal of the “Four Modernizations” encourages Chinese people to struggle for this, and today’s China has gained huge achievements because of this. On the 15th, Comrade Li Keqiang stressed, when he investigated and researched the State Grain Bureau, that pushing forward the construction of the “New Four Modernizations”, new industrialization, informatization, urbanization and agricultural modernization, is the road China must follow for modernization. The “New Four Modernizations” have outlined the concrete path for constructing China’s modernization with an even closer feel for the times. Continue reading

“Eight Musts” – What Does Xi’s Political Programme Contain?

In recent days, major Party news outlets, including the People’s Daily and Seeking Truth, have published articles referring to a new political programme, which seem to outline the political programme of the Xi leadership. It also introduces an important new political term: the “Eight Musts” (bage bixu 八个必). These are:

We must persist in the dominant role of the people; we must persist in liberating and developing social productive forces; we must persist in moving reform and opening-up forward; we must persist in safeguarding social fairness and justice; we must persist in marching the path of common prosperity; we must persist in stimulating social harmony; we must persist in peaceful development; and we must persist in the leadership of the Party.

The grouping of these Eight Musts has, in turn, been added to the Four Cardinal Principles put forward by Deng Xiaoping, creating Five Cardinal Principles (wuge jiben 五个基本) for Socialism with Chinese Characteristics. This is one of the Party’s core watchwords and political concepts, and any alteration to it signals that the alteration is considered by the Party to be of profound significance. Hence, this announcement should be taken very seriously. Leaving aside the obvious remark that persisting in the leadership of the Party was already one of the Four Cardinal Principles and therefore is now included twice, what can we deduce at this early stage from the propaganda language surrounding this initiative? Continue reading

“Qiushi” Signed Article: Unwaveringly Persist in Socialism with Chinese Characteristics

At the beginning of the New Year, General Secretary Xi Jinping made an important speech at the opening ceremony for the discussion class for the new members and alternate members of the Central Committee to study and implement the spirit of the 18th Party Congress, which deeply expounded the ideological sources and course of exploration of the path of Socialism with Chinese characteristics, clearly responded to concerns inside and outside the Party and concerns inside and outside the country concerning China’s path, and earnestly indicated that Socialism with Chinese characteristics is Socialist and is not any other ism, and appealed to all Communist Party members and especially leading Party cadres to be firm believers and faithful practitioners of the ambitious ideal of Communism and the joint ideal of Socialism with Chinese characteristics. This is an important political proclamation of the new Central leading group, and its significance is great and profound. Continue reading

“Eight Musts” Coalesce into Consensus

This article was posted yesterday in the Observer News Weekly (暸望新闻周刊), and seems to be the first major policy declaration from the Xi administration. I will post an analysis shortly.

Belief, faith, confidence and real action are the guarantees for the success of our undertaking. If people in the same boat help each other, the sea will make way, and when the signal is cried, the waves will move to the side!

At the time of the first collective study of the 18th CCP Central Committee, General Secretary Xi Jinping pointed out that persisting in and developing Socialism with Chinese Characteristics is the main line in implementing the report of the 18th Party Congress. We must closely grasp this main line and make persisting into and developing Socialism with Chinese Characteristics into a focal point, rallying point and stopover point for implementing the spirit of the 18th Party congress, only in this way will we be able to study the spirit of the 18th Party Congress more deeply, understand it more thoroughly and implement it more consciously.

Practice fully proves that Socialism with Chinese Characteristics is the banner of the Chinese Communist Party and the unity of the Chinese people, the banner for brave advance and the banner of victory. If we want to completely construct a relatively well-off society, accelerate the moving forward of Socialist modernization and realize the great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation, we must hold high the magnificent banner of Socialism with Chinese Characteristics from beginning to end, and unwaveringly persist in and develop Socialism with Chinese Characteristics. Continue reading

Internet Instructions – August 2007 (II)

Note: Canyu is now posting these notices quite intermittently. Further translations will be posted here as soon as original materials are available. 

9 August 2007, 09:33:30

First level: according to investigations, “2000 Students in Liaoning Expose Themselves to Sunlight for Four Hours, Seeking Guinness Record” is an inaccurate report, all websites are requested to deal with it according to the following requirements;

1, websites must not reprint it, where it has been reprinted, please delete it immediately;

2, forums, blogs and other interactive segments are not to post or discuss this. Continue reading

Yu Zhong: The Route of Reform Cannot Be Singular

This op-ed by legal scholar Yu Zhong was published originally in the Global Times, on 7 January 2013.

During this heated debate on political structural reform, constitutionalism has again become a focus. The “dream of constitutionalism” has now also become a hot term online. There is one viewpoint that hols that our objective is constitutionalist Socialism. There is also a viewpoint that holds that Confucian constitutionalism merits to be pursued more. There is yet another viewpoint that holds that constitutionalist democracy is the highest national interest. Even though these various kinds of viewpoints are not quite similar, they have a largest common denominator, which is the pursuit of constitutionalism

Since constitutionalism is a political objective to be pursued, what is constitutionalism in fact? One sort of representative answer is: the core content of constitutionalism is freedom, democracy and human rights. In a general understanding, democracy, human rights and freedom are good things. Then the constitutionalism that contains these three naturally is an even better thing. There is no need to doubt that we cannot reject this. Looking from the level of practice, looking from actions and processes, either freedom, democracy or human rights, and especially constitutionalism, are dynamic processes, and there are no fixed models. This is to say, the practical processes of constitutionalism are pluralist and diverse. Continue reading

Internet Instructions – August 2007 (I)

2 August 2007, 07:34:11

First level: concerning the matter of great rain in Beijing on 1 August causing flooding in a number of roads and blocking traffic, please do not reprint corresponding content; interactive columns are not to disseminate relevant text and images. Please timely log on to the platform to perform feedback.

2 August 2007, 15:58:16, Huang Jing

All websites: please revise websites’ interactive column user agreements on the basis of the revision suggestions put forward by today’s public emotion meeting, and report the revision situation to our Office before next Thursday, huangjing@bjwgb.gov.cn. Continue reading

Internet Instructions – July 2007 (IV)

23 July 2007, 15:15:37

Third level: everyone, concerning the matter of Olympic propaganda, the following is instructed:

1, Olympic propaganda relies on everyone.

2, You must act within the existing framework of Chinese laws and regulations, and international practice.

3, You must safeguard the rights and interests of the International Olympic Committee and Olympic partners, and establish a good international image of China being sincere, honest and keeping promises.

4, There must be no mutual attacks for foreigners to have a laugh at.

5, In propaganda, the statistical data of AC Nielsen are not to be cited.

6, Please transmit the above content to the editor-in-chief so he knows it. Continue reading

People’s Daily: Network Expressions Should Also Be Proper and Lawful

This People’s Daily op-ed appeared widely in Chinese media, as well as the website of the National People’s Congress. I could write a long analysis about it, but it is the usual, disingenuous claptrap anyway, so I can’t be bothered.

After the National People’s Congress Standing Committee’ Decision concerning Strengthening Network Information Protection appeared, some people displayed misunderstanding concerning this and called it into question – believing that this might impede or suppress the space for public opinion among the people.

The Internet has already become an important platform for citizens to express thoughts and participate in social activities at the present time. Although this platform is different from traditional platforms, the fact that those expressing themselves must abide by the principles of the propriety, legality and responsibility of their expressions has not changed. Expressions on network platforms may have a dual character, namely that apart from lawful expressions, there are also people that might use the network to engage in insults, slander, fraud, sex and other illegal activities.

Strengthening network management reflects “the integration of rights and duties”. On the one side, it is necessary to protect citizens’ freedom of speech and right to expression, on the other side, citizens are required to be responsible for the content of their expressions. The basic function of having real names at the back stage of the network is that it raises the costs for starting and disseminating rumours, and frighten people scheming to start and disseminate rumours. If rumours are allowed to be disseminated, it will be freedom of speech that will be harmed in the end.

There are boundaries to social life, there are also bottom lines for the network world. As everyone knows, “freedom” is relative, this is the same in the network world and in real society, absolute freedom does not exists.

Dealing with the network requires tolerance, but there should not be closed eyes. Our country implements legal standards for network “freedom”, and will effectively overcome the problem of “the jungle of freedom”, so that not only the network world will be even more healthy, civilized and ordered, at the came time, citizens’ free expression will also be guaranteed more powerfully.

网络表达同样应正当合法
全国人大常委会关于加强网络信息保护的决定出台后,一些人对此产生误解和质疑,认为这可能会掣肘、压缩民间舆论空间。
互联网已成为当今时代公民表达思想、参与社会生活的重要平台。这个平台虽有别于传统平台,但表达者必须遵循表达的正当性、合法性与责任性原则没有改变。在网络平台上的表达,可能产生两面性,即除了合法表达外,还有人可能利用网络进行侮辱、诽谤、诈骗、色情等非法活动。
加强网络管理,体现了“权利义务相统一”。一方面要保护公民的言论自由表达权利,另一方面要求公民对自己表达的内容负责。网络后台实名的根本作用在于,让造谣传谣的成本变得高昂,震慑企图造谣传谣的人。如果任谣言传播,恰恰最后受伤害的就是言论自由。
社会生活有边界,网络世界有底线。众所周知,“自由”是相对的,网络世界与现实社会一样,并不存在绝对自由。
对待网络需要宽容而不能纵容。我国对网络的“自由”进行法律规范,将有效克服“自由丛林”的弊端,不仅网络世界会更加健康文明有序,同时公民的自由表达也将得到更有力的保障。

Copyright Law Revision: A Short Update

According to a People’s Daily of 7 January, the third draft of the Copyright Law has been completed, and will be submitted to the State Council ‘soon’. Provided that the State Council approves, and given the lengthy opinion-seeking and revision process thus far, it does not seem that there will be much delay in its being passed by the National People’s Congress. This is confirmed in the report of a recent meeting of the NPC Committee for Education, Science, Culture and Hygiene, which lists revision of the Copyright Law among 11 legislative programmes that are deemed to be “relatively mature”. The Committee therefore suggests these to be listed in the legislative plan of the NPC’s Standing Committee, to accelerate the legislative process.

So far, no text of the current version has been published. According to the People’s Daily, the main changes are the following:
the right of pursuit for fine art works has been added, and the protection term for performance and photographic works has been increased;
rental rights for performers as well as rights to obtain remuneration from audiovisual works have been added, as have rights for audio producers to obtain remuneration from other persons using their works for broadcast and open dissemination, and the rights of radio and television organizations have been changed from rights to prohibit to exclusive rights;
administrative enforcement measures have been enhanced, it has been providers that rights holders can choose the method of damage compensation, statutory compensation levels have been raised, punitive damage provisions have been added, and the scope to infer fault of an infringer has been widened.

 

Internet Instructions – July 2007 (III)

16 July 2007, 17:59:25

First level: concerning the matter of the dismissal of the Jinan People’s Congress Chairman, only reprint copy from main Shandong media, do not issue it on the main page of websites and the main page of news centres, do not open trackers, forums and other interactive segments are not to discuss this. Delete images related to this case.

17 July 2007, 09:22:26, Zhong Fu

All websites: please immediately delete the article “Beijing Municipal Construction Committee Low-Key Meeting Seeks for Opinions – Foreign Investment Advice Policy Stable”. Continue reading

Internet Instructions – July 2007 (II)

5 July 2007, 16:50:03

First level: reporting requirements concerning two accidents in Benxi and Hengyang.

For reports concerning the explosion case in the Benxi Music Hall, Liaoning and the fire incident in the Hengyang cinema, Hunan: do not put it in the important news section, it can only be put in the domestic section; when reprinting, only issue single news items, do not link to related news; let news roll away naturally; close news trackers; do not set up special subjects.

Continue reading

Global Times: Lay Off Supporting Southern Weekend, Or Else.

As the protests surrounding Southern Weekend continue in Guangdong, the Global Times has published a strongly-worded commentary, denouncing the calls for  change of media governance. As often, it leaves much to be desired in terms of logics and consistency, but the tone is clear: this incident will not lead to any substantive change in media governance.

First, the Global Times claims that, according to the official Weibo account of Southern Weekly (which has allegedly been taken over by higher-level management), everything is based on a mistake, and that, whatever else, the “revised version” of the New Year’s message which started everything, did not originate in the Guangdong Propaganda Department.

Then, GT moves on to lambast those calling for press freedom online and in the streets. It says that a lot of the Weibo hubbub is being created by ex-employess of Southern Weekend, as well as people who have no formal relationship with the newspaper at all. Although it is already quite vague why a formal relationship with the newspaper in question should be a condition for voicing an opinion, GT continues to point the gun at its own foot by then referring to “Chen Guangcheng, in the faraway United States” as the latest supporter of this incoherent rabble, conveniently forgetting that this is not necessarily someone with a very bad reputation in Chinese public opinion.

After the character assassination, GT gets down to the issues: it states that, while current demands are ostensibly aimed at concrete persons and matters, there is an ulterior motive behind all of this. Again, this is standard fare in Chinese official communication, and is a result of the typical doubletruth in authoritarian regimes. The thing that counts is the “big picture” (daju 大局), and day-to-day concrete facts that may harm this picture are to be “harmonized”: they are said to be “inaccurate” (in other words: people lie) or have ulterior motives (in other words: people want to destroy the big project over something small). This argument is then followed on by the official claimed truth in the next paragraphs: press reform must be in step with social reform. After the 18th Party Congress, there is a political determination to press on with reform, but a “free press” will not be part of it. The press “is not a special political zone”.

If you have lost count of the soft power own goals by now, the op-ed then claims that even in the West, mainstream media will not oppose governments. Clearly, this writer has never seen Fox News or Jeremy Paxman, or Have I Got News For You, for that matter. The article continues with a warning: those who think they are defending Chinese media must think twice, for in reality, they are burying it alive. The scope for news freedom has opened, but in step with the will of the Party. There is no social basis for further openness, as people want their lives to develop economically, and don’t want upheaval. It points to the robustness of China’s polity, by saying that every self-immolation, every protest or every rumour could be the start of something alarming in society in unrest, but that this is certainly not the case. If that is true, however, I don’t see why the Chinese government would still need to spend more on internal security than on defence, firefighters are stationed permanently on Tiananmen Square, or why allegations such as these are reacted to with such alacrity.

If we look at the larger picture: it is clear that the Southern Weekend affair, together with the new Internet Decision and other Internet regulations, the closing of the website of another magazine, “Yanhuang Chunqiu”, and now this editorial, show that the new leadership, like the old leadership, seems to be willing in no way to open up the public sphere for a more pluralist and diverse discussion. This was already clear from the 2011 Central Committee Decision on cultural reform, the 12th Five Year Plans for the development of culture and the Internet, and is unsurprising in terms of the foundation of power of the current regime. The continuity of the CCP is built on control, but also on being able to get buy-in from specific social groups. The Party’s control over the commanding heights of the economy and society allows it to extract resources which are used to co-opt certain sections of the population and provide them with a vested interest in the status quo. Equally, the materialist gains that come from being a CCP official may play a considerable role in maintaining loyalty. Nonetheless, corruption is still portrayed in Party language as a problem of morally unsound individuals which must be solved by education and occasional campaigns, rather than being caused by basic incentives for officials, which must be solved by things such as independent oversight, formal separation of powers and, indeed, a free media calling for the true implementation of China’s Constitution, the commitments made by its political leaders to the population.

One last matter: the words that the Global Times uses to talk about the incident and how to deal with it (fengbo “disturbance”, and pingxi “put down”) are the same terms that were used to refer to the 1989 protests. A subtle hint, perhaps?

Comment: Southern Weekend “Letter to Readers” Really Makes One Think Deeply

The official “Southern Weekend” Weibo issued a “letter to the readers”, of which the complete text is as follows: “The New Year message that was published in the special New Year edition of this newspaper on 3 January has been composed by the editors of this newspaper in coordination with the special theme of ‘pursuing dreams’, the introductory remarks on the cover of the special edition were drafted by a responsible person of this newspapers, related online hearsay is untrue. Because of hurrying timing, there has been carelessness in work, and mistakes exist in the text, we apologise to the broad readers for this.”

The incident of the Southern Weekend’s New Year message “being changed” has spread on the Internet in recent days, there were Southern Weekend editors who stated that the article that appeared in the newspaper was issued by the Guangdong Provincial Committee Propaganda Department. Yesterday evening, this official Weibo from Southern Weekend clarified the cause of the affair, the true situation is completely different from the version that has circulated on the Internet in the past few days. Furthermore, based on the Global Times’ understanding through its own independent channels, the so-called “changed version” has, in fact, not been written by the Guangdong Provincial Committee propaganda department.

But in recent days, there were again people on Weibo who posted a letter signed by a number of staff of Southern Weekend which opposes Southern Weekend’s official Weibo, it seems as if the situation has not yet completely calmed down, and it seems as if division have emerged within Southern Weekend.

The disturbance at Southern Weekend has fermented in the past few days, but if we look at it in detail, among the most energetic people disseminating this on the Internet, apart from some people who work at Southern Weekend at present, many have already left “Southern Weekend” or have no relation to speak of with this news group, there are also some active Weibo personalities. In reality, they are very scattered, and are linked together through the Internet. Their newest supporter is Chen Guangcheng from the faraway United States.

The requirements these people put forward are very sharp, on the surface, they are aimed at concrete people and matters, in reality, anyone can see that their spearhead is aimed at the overall structure related to the media.

Regardless of whether these people want it or not, there is common knowledge that is: under the reality of China’s society and politics today, that sort of “free media” that these people yearn for in their hearts, cannot exist. The development of all Chinese media can only be mutually corresponding with China’s greater reality, media reform must be a part of China’s overall reform, the media can absolutely not become China’s “political special region”.

All Chinese media have some of their own unique details, but when disturbances, such as with “Southern Weekend”, arise, their greater alignment in the end can absolutely not be a “mishap”. Its result certainly will display the determination of Chinese politics after the 18th Party Congress, and there will be no uncertainty.

Even in the West, mainstream media will not choose to openly oppose the government. Someone doing this in China, will certainly be a bigger loser. There have always been some outside personalities who attempted to promote a few Chinese media to engage in dissent, they are burying these media alive.

In recent days, some letters of protest inscribed as “Southern Weekend editorial department” have circulated on Weibo, but none of them have been issued through the “Southern Weekend” official Weibo. Taking yesterday evening’s statement on the official “Southern Weekend” Weibo as reference, the entire incident looks as if the first phase of the overall incident has been fabricated by the diffusers. This should, in fact, not happen.

Some outside people want to see disturbance, if there are media that openly oppose the present system, this may be a lot more “good viewing” than in the Shifang or Qidong environmental protection mass incidents. If there is a media company that truly acts like this, and does it successfully, then matters will really be too interesting, and can give these people too much political daydreams.

But this can only be an illusion. One important reason for this is that, today’s China basically has no social basis to support acting like this, the whole society’s true attention is to run the economy and develop the people’s livelihood, society does not hope that their future path of the country is variable, ruining their tranquil lives.

In a truly unrestive society, if someone incinerates themselves, some small clique protests, or even rumours are written online, it is hard to say whether it becomes an alarming beginning. But the real China develops vigorously and reforms incessantly, that China where “something big is going to happen” has been written out and thought out by some people who happened together on Weibo.

News needs incessant reform, but there is something that cannot be changed: China is a “package”, Chinese news and Chinese politics must be coordinated and interacting at the macro-level, the elastic space for Chinese news has incessantly expanded in recent years, and Weibo has been added to this. At the same time, the elastic space in Chinese politics has expanded at the same pace. But China’s news will not be able to march ahead alone in a way that politics cannot bear during the same period.

We should vigorously and boldly realize self-reform, we must at the same time have sufficient wisdom and concentration to control self-reform, ensure that news is the most dynamic part of the overall reform of China, and does not come apart or separate from it. Otherwise, we will make reckless moves, will only get half the result with twice the effort, and even damage the larger picture of China’s progress.

I hope that all people who like “Southern Weekend” cooperate in putting down the disturbance, and do not force a Chinese newspaper to play a role of opposition that it will not be able to bear, no matter what.

社评:南方周末“致读者”实在令人深思

《南方周末》官方微博昨晚发表“致读者”,全文如下:“本报1月3日新年特刊所刊发的新年献词,系本报编辑配合专题‘追梦’撰写,特刊封面导言系本报一负责人草拟,网上有关传言不实。由于时间仓促,工作疏忽,文中存在差错,我们就此向广大读者致歉。”

南周新年献词“被改动”事件近日在互联网上扩散,有南周编辑称见报稿出自广东省委宣传部。昨晚南周的这条官方微博,把事情起因做了澄清,真相与前些天互联网流传的版本完全不同。另据环球时报通过自己的独立管道了解,所谓“改稿”确实不是广东省委宣传部所写。

但在昨晚,微博上又有人贴出与南周官方微博对抗的南周部分人员签名信,看来事情尚未完全平息,南周内部似出现分裂。
南周风波近日发酵,但仔细看,最积极在网上扩散的人除了有一些目前在南周工作,很多是早就离开《南方周末》、与该报系如今已没什么关系的人,还有一些微博活跃人士。他们在现实中很分散,通过互联网联系在一起。他们的最新支持者是远在美国的陈光诚。

这些人提出的要求很激烈,表面上是针对具体的人和事,实际上谁都看得出,他们的矛头指向了与媒体有关的整个体制。

不管这些人愿不愿意,有一个常识是:在中国今天的社会政治现实下,不可能存在这些人心中向往的那种“自由媒体”。中国所有媒体的发展只能是同中国大现实相对应的,媒体改革必须是中国整体改革的一部分,媒体决不会成为中国的“政治特区”。

中国所有媒体都有自己的一些独特细节,但像《南方周末》这样出了风波时,它的大走向最终一定不会是一个“意外”。它的结果一定会展示十八大之后中国政治的确定性,而非不确定性。

即使在西方,主流媒体也不会选择同政府公开对抗。在中国这样做,一定更是输家。一直以来有一些外围人士试图推动中国个别媒体搞对抗,他们是在坑这些媒体。

近日微博上流传过一些落款“南方周末编辑部”的抗议信,但它们都不是通过《南方周末》官方微博发出来的。以《南方周末》昨晚官微的声明做参照,整个事件看来在最初阶段就被扩散者造了假。这实在不应该。

外部的一些人愿意看热闹,如果有媒体公开对抗现行体制,这可比什邡或启东的环保性群体事件“好看”多了。如果有一家媒体真这样做,而且做成功了,那可真是太有趣了,能给一些人带来太多政治遐想。

但这只能是虚幻的。其中一个很重要的原因是,今天的中国根本没有支持这样做的社会基础,全社会的真正注意力是搞经济,发展民生,社会不希望国家前途有变数,毁了平静生活。

在一个真正动荡的社会,某个人自焚,某个小群体抗议,甚至在网上编个谣言,都说不准成为一个惊人的开始。但现实的中国是蓬勃发展、不断改革的,那个“要出大事”的中国是一些人凑到微博上编出来想出来的。

新闻需要不断改革,但有一样改不了:中国是“打包的”,中国新闻和中国政治在宏观上必然是协调的,互动的,这些年中国新闻的弹性空间不断扩大,微博也加入进来。与此同时中国政治的弹性空间在同步扩大。但中国新闻决做不了同时期政治不能承受的单独突进。

我们应积极、大胆地实践自身改革,我们同时必须有足够的智慧和定力驾驭自身的改革,使新闻既是中国整体改革的最活跃的部分,又不与它脱节和割裂。否则我们就是瞎闯,事倍功半,甚至损害中国前进的大局。

希望所有喜欢《南方周末》的人配合风波的平息,别逼一份中国报纸扮演它无论如何也承担不了的对抗角色。

Internet Instructions – July 2007 (I)

1 July 2007, 22:34:53

First level: concerning the matter of the portrait of Chairman Mao on Tiananmen being damaged today, all websites are not to reprint corresponding reports; interactive segments are not to disseminate this, set up key words well.

Concerning the matter of the portrait of Chairman Mao on Tiananmen being damaged today, all websites are not to reprint corresponding reports; interactive segments may not disseminate text, images or videos related to this matter; all search engines are requested to ensure that there are no search results for the following keywords and maintain this until 15 July: “Tiananmen – Chairman Mao portrait”, “Golden Water Bridge – Chairman Mao portrait”, “Chairman Mao portrait – blown up”, “Chairman portrait – blown up”, “Chairman Mao portrait – damaged”, “Chairman portrait – damaged”, “Chairman Mao portrait – double-bang firecracker”. Continue reading

Internet Instructions – June 2007 (IV)

22 June 2007, 22:43:41

For reports concerning high-level personnel changes at PetroChina, use Xinhua copy without exception, do not let it appear on the main pages of websites and news centres, close news trackers, do not send text messages, interactive segments are not to disseminate or discuss this, please strictly implement this.

22 June 2007, 22:51:52

First level: Propaganda instructions concerning high-level personnel changes at PetroChina, these must be strictly implemented!!

All websites are only to reprint Xinhua copy concerning high-level personnel changes at the China Petroleum Group Co. (PetroChina); where copy from other sources than Xinhua has been reprinted, please immediately delete it; corresponding information is not to appear on the main page of websites and news centres; close news trackers when reprinting; do not make corresponding links, do not send text messages; interactive segments are not to disseminate corresponding content, please strictly implement this. Continue reading