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Chinese Blogs Dare to Defy Propaganda Department Decrees

By Gary Pansey & Joseph Wu
Epoch Times Staff
Created: August 9, 2011 Last Updated: August 10, 2011
Related articles: China » Democracy & Human Rights
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Faced with restrictions on permissible reports, Chinese journalists have turned to Sina.com and other blogs to make important stories known.

A prime example of this occurred recently when an important story about relocation abuse was banned by Hunan Province’s Propaganda Department. The story concerns a resident of Yuanjiang City who moved away when the local government told him that his residence was on a flood plain.

But years later, the resident learned that the area had become a valuable development zone strewn with factories and was no longer listed as at risk from a nearby dam’s discharge.

A television station in Hunan investigated the story, but Mr. Gong, deputy minister with Yuanjiang’s Propaganda Department, ordered the station to squelch it. The station continued its investigation so Gong contacted Hunan’s deputy director of propaganda, Mr. Wen.

Wen, apparently endowed with more clout because the station was in his jurisdiction, issued a ban on the story at midnight before it would air and angrily scolded the reporter.

After the fiasco was posted online by Tang Fei, a senior journalist in Hunan, many Chinese journalists responded with similar stories. Tang commented, "I think the most significant occupational disease among Chinese journalists is the depression that results from Chinese officials’ various bans.”

In the wake of last month’s high speed rail collision in Wenzhou City, the CCP Central Propaganda Department issued a ban on all reporting of the incident by independent media.

Despite the fact that the Central Propaganda Department issued the ban, it triggered an unprecedented campaign defying the CCP’s orders in China’s mass media. Over one million pieces of relevant news were posted on Chinese blogs, which helped the world learn the facts of the tragedy.

A blogger wrote that, though blogging and the Internet have been blocked by some interest groups and the authorities at will, many still believe that the power of networking is unstoppable, and the power of justice is indestructible.

Read the original Chinese article.

chinareports@epochtimes.com

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