The New York Times has spoken with unnamed employees of Bloomberg News in Hong Kong who say that editors chose not to run a story on ties between a wealthy businessman and China’s top leaders:
The investigative report they had been working on for the better part of a year, which detailed the hidden financial ties between one of the wealthiest men in China and the families of top Chinese leaders, would not be published.
In the call late last month, [editor in chief Matthew] Winkler defended his decision, comparing it to the self-censorship by foreign news bureaus trying to preserve their ability to report inside Nazi-era Germany, according to Bloomberg employees familiar with the discussion.
“He said, ‘If we run the story, we’ll be kicked out of China,’ ” one of the employees said. Less than a week later, a second article, about the children of senior Chinese officials employed by foreign banks, was also declared dead, employees said.
Patrick Boehler reports: China’s government and state-owned companies are putting more pressure on media outlets around the world to prevent and punish reporting critical of Beijing, a US-based think tank has said.
“These measures obstruct newsgathering, prevent the publication of undesirable content, and punish overseas media outlets that fail to heed restrictions,” the National Endowment for Democracy in Washington DC writes in a report released on Tuesday.
“Indirect pressure [is] applied via proxies – including advertisers, satellite firms, and foreign governments – who take action to prevent or punish the publication of content critical of Beijing,” it said… Read the rest of this entry »
AFP – China is employing two million people to keep tabs on people’s Internet use, according to state media, in a rare glimpse into the secret world of Beijing’s vast online surveillance operation.
Many of the employees are simply performing keyword searches to monitor the tens of millions of messages being posted daily on popular social media and microblogging sites, the Beijing News said.
The exact number of people employed to trawl through the Internet in a bid to prevent social unrest and limit criticism of the ruling Community party has long been the subject of speculation. Read the rest of this entry »