Anti-CCP Protest Quickly Grows in China

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CHINA HUMILIATED by CCP

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#1
Jan 8, 2013
 
China newspaper negotiates with govt amid protests
1:54a.m. EST January 8, 20130 CommentsShare
A man wearing a mask with words "Silent" holds a banner reading: "Let's chase our dreams together, go Southern Weekly newspaper" during a protest outside the headquarters of the newspaper in Guangzhou, Guangdong province.(Photo: Wu Wei, AP)
BEIJING (AP)— Editors of a Chinese newspaper known for bold reporting were meeting Tuesday with propaganda officials to find a way out of a censorship dispute that has triggered protests and evolved into a political challenge for China's new leadership.

What started out as a confrontation by Southern Weekly journalists with a top censor over a New Year's editorial has rapidly become a focal point driving public calls for the authoritarian Communist Party government to loosen its grip on information.

The dispute centers on how the editorial, originally calling for political reform, was transformed into a tribute praising the Communist Party. Scholars have signed open letters calling for the censor's dismissal, celebrities are speaking out for the paper on microblogs and hundreds of people gathered for a second day outside the publication's office bearing flowers and signs in support.

On Tuesday, the paper's editorial committee was to hold a fourth round of negotiations with its top management, which is part of the provincial propaganda office, according to a Southern Weekly editor. The editor spoke on condition of anonymity because of an internal directive not to talk to the foreign media.

Propaganda officials want the newspaper to publish — as per normal — on Thursday but editors are negotiating over whether to do so, and the terms under which they would be willing, for example, if they could include a letter to readers explaining the incident, the editor said.

The committee is also pushing a larger appeal to abolish censorship of the newspaper's content prior to publication, the editor said. The suggestion is that Communist Party leaders could provide direction but not interfere with reporting and editing, and should refrain from taking issue with content until after publication, the editor said.

Protesters again gathered Tuesday outside the offices of the newspaper in the southern city of Guangzhou bearing signs and shouting slogans, said two participants. A handful of party supporters had also showed up and they were engaged in heated debates with the crowd, they said.

"Southern Weekly is the only mainland newspaper that, relatively speaking, is more able to report the truth," said one of the protesters, Cheng Qiubo, a democracy activist. "We are very angry that it has been censored ... so we hope that this country can have media freedom, to abolish the news censorship system."

The issue also galvanized a wide variety of people on China's popular Twitter-like microblogs, with many journalists, scholars, entrepreneurs and celebrities posting messages of support for the newspaper's stance.
CHINA HUMILIATED by CCP

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#2
Jan 8, 2013
 
....

"One word of truth outweighs the whole world," celebrity Chinese actress Yao Chen quoted the Russian Nobel Prize Literature winner Alexander Solzhenitsyn in a post that was accompanied by the newspaper's logo.

The newspaper's name in Chinese translates literally to "Southern Weekend," and in a sign of the authorities' sensitivity about the dispute, searches on microblogs were blocked for that name and even for the otherwise mundane individual Chinese phrases "southern" and "weekend."

Political expression in the public sphere is often viewed as risky in China, where the authoritarian government frequently harasses and even jails dissidents for pro-democracy calls.

The Guangzhou-based writer and activist Wu Wei, who goes by the pen name Ye Du, said police had visited him at home and ordered him not to attend the protest. Wu had posted multiple photos of Monday's protest on his microblog that were widely circulated but found by night that his microblog account had been shut.

Also joining the chorus were 18 Chinese academics who signed an open letter calling for the dismissal of Tuo Zhen, a provincial propaganda minister blamed for the censorship. The scholars included legal professors, liberal economists, historians and writers.

Six weeks ago, China installed a new generation of Communist Party leaders for the next five years, with current Vice President Xi Jinping at the helm. Some of Xi's announcements for a trimmed-down style of leadership, with reduced waste and fewer unnecessary meetings, have raised hopes in some quarters that he might favor deeper reforms in the political system to mollify a public long frustrated by local corruption.

The Guangdong provincial propaganda department did not immediately respond to a faxed list of questions. But the Communist Party-run Global Times newspaper said in an editorial that no Chinese media outlet should fool itself into thinking that it could occupy a "political special zone" in which it is free from government control.

The U.S. State Department said Monday that media censorship is incompatible with China's aspirations to build a modern information-based economy and society. Spokeswoman Victoria Nuland said it was interesting that Chinese are now strongly taking up their right to freedom of speech.

"We hope the government is taking notice," she told a news briefing in Washington.

China's media in recent years have become increasingly freewheeling in some kinds of coverage, including lurid reports on celebrities and sports figures. Still, censorship of political issues remains tight — although government officials typically claim there is no censorship at all — and the restrictions have drawn increasingly vocal criticism from journalists and members of the public.
CHINA HUMILIATED by CCP

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#3
Jan 8, 2013
 
CHINA NEWS Updated January 8, 2013, 3:57 a.m. ET Censorship Protest Gains Support in China
Outcry Rises in Street, Print and Online, After Journalists Cry Foul Over Propaganda Chief's Alleged Rewrite of Editorial

By JOSH CHIN and BRIAN SPEGELE

Will China's new leadership change its censorship tactics? Jeremy Goldkorn, founder of Danwei, a research firm that tracks Chinese media, talks about how the country is trying to tighten controls on censorship and using blogs to its advantage.

BEIJING—Protests by journalists over alleged heavy-handed censorship at one of China's most daring newspapers have garnered high-profile support in the media and blogosphere, with prominent academics, bloggers and even movie stars joining in.

The outburst has been fueled in part by expectations of change under new Communist Party General Secretary Xi Jinping, who has stirred up hopes since taking office in November with optimistic comments about the "great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation."

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A protester with a mask reading 'silence' holds a sign of support outside the office of Southern Weekly newspaper.

Demonstrators protesting for free speech outside a newspaper office in Guangzhou, China scuffled with leftist nationalists on the second day of anti-censorship protests. Video by WSJ's Paul Mozur via #WorldStream.
On Monday, several hundred protesters gathered outside the headquarters of the Southern Weekly newspaper in Guangzhou, the capital of Guangdong province, to vent their anger at the reworking of a New Year's editorial that originally called for greater legal rights but ended up as a celebration of the government's achievements.

"Abandon press censorship. Chinese people want freedom!" read a handwritten placard attached to a bouquet of flowers left in front of the main gates of the building.

Demonstrators laid bunches of chrysanthemums, a flower associated with funerals, outside the newspaper's offices, in mock mourning for the demise of the newspaper's hard-hitting style, photographs posted on Sina Corp.'s SINA -0.97%Weibo microblogging service showed.

Online reports said Southern Weekly's news staff had staged a strike to protest the rewriting of the editorial, but the accounts couldn't be confirmed. Calls to the news department rang unanswered on Monday, suggesting the newsroom was empty. "That has never happened before," a receptionist who tried to put a call through said.

Mr. Xi, China's new leader, hasn't said he intends to pursue meaningful political overhauls. But he has adopted an informal style and dispensed with wooden Communist Party rhetoric, an approach that some see as a signal that he plans to make his administration more open and responsive to people's concerns.
...
CHINA HUMILIATED by CCP

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#4
Jan 8, 2013
 
...

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Demonstrators gather along a street near the headquarters of Southern Weekly newspaper.

More on Dissent in China
As Debate Continues, Foreigners Blamed
In China's Cyberspace, Dissent Speaks Code

In the kind of statement that has fed hopes that Mr. Xi will soften the edges of an authoritarian government, China's official Xinhua news agency on Monday announced planned reforms to China's system of "re-education through labor."

The system allows police to sentence people suspected of minor offenses such as petty theft or prostitution, as well as petitioners and others who create a political nuisance for authorities, to up to four years of forced labor without judicial review.

The forced-labor system came under fire last summer after it was revealed that a woman named Tang Hui had been sentenced to 1½ years in a labor camp after "disturbing social order" by protesting for tougher punishment of seven men who raped her daughter and forced her into prostitution.

A group of lawyers issued an open letter calling for reform of the system amid public anger over the treatment of Ms. Tang, who was released shortly after the details of her case emerged.

A number of media organizations have rallied behind journalists at Southern Weekly by posting veiled messages of support on social media and their own websites. Sina Corp.'s Tianjin news portal, for example, arranged its front page so that the first character in each headline spelled out an acrostic message: "Go Southern Weekly."

Chinese writer and race-car driver Han Han described in his popular blog Monday how Chinese writers live in constant uncertainty over what they can and can't say.

"Even if you want to talk about the regulations, they won't clearly tell you what they are, so every person more or less is in violation of the 'regulations,' " he wrote. He lamented what he described as the anonymity of an invisible Chinese censor. "He covers your mouth and tells everyone you're cheerful," the post read.

Southern Weekly's problems are also attracting attention from celebrities who normally avoid political commentary. Film actress Yao Chen, a social-media star with more than 31 million followers on Sina Weibo, posted a quote from Alexander Solzhenitsyn—"One word of truth outweighs the whole world"—over the Southern Weekly logo.

...
CHINA HUMILIATED by CCP

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#5
Jan 8, 2013
 
...
Even the Communist Party's flagship People's Daily appeared to argue for a softer approach, saying that a stable society "must rest on a healthy public opinion environment for support."

The commentary argued that challenges facing China's propaganda officials were unprecedented, and said "blunt preaching" must be rejected.

The Southern Weekly protests are an unusually direct challenge to provincial government and party leaders in Guangdong province, China's export-manufacturing powerhouse and a trailblazer for economic overhauls.

A draft of the editorial that sparked the furor called on authorities to respect the constitution, which guarantees the right of free speech and assembly.

Southern Weekly employees said Guangdong provincial propaganda chief Tuo Zhen rewrote the editorial. Employees at the newspaper are demanding his resignation. Mr. Tuo couldn't be reached, and local propaganda officials declined to comment.

"Readers should decide whether content is good or bad. It isn't for officials to judge," said Ah Qiang, a writer and public-rights activist who attended Monday's protest. "Everyone knows about media censorship, and for the most part everyone has learned to deal with it. But this time they crossed a line and that caused people to unleash a lot of pent-up frustration."

Adding to the public anger was a message posted to the newspaper's Sina Weibo account late Sunday night that denied censorship of the editorial, saying "the relevant online rumors aren't true." A short while later, several dozen Southern Weekly employees released a statement that the account had been forcibly taken over and that the message denying the censorship was untrue.

The protests outside the newspaper's offices on Monday were orderly, with police intervening to keep traffic flowing outside the newspaper's offices but otherwise standing aside, demonstrators said. The crowd included elderly retirees as well as middle-school-aged children, according to the witnesses.

"I was deeply moved," said Ye Du, a dissident writer who spent 2½ hours at the protest before being forcibly taken home by state security agents. "This wasn't just about Southern Weekly. It was about Chinese peoples' desire for more political freedom."
CHINA HUMILIATED by CCP

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#6
Jan 8, 2013
 
"One word of truth outweighs the whole world," celebrity Chinese actress Yao Chen quoted the Russian Nobel Prize Literature winner Alexander Solzhenitsyn in a post that was accompanied by the newspaper's logo.

She is a CHINESE PATRIOT!
CHINA HUMILIATED by CCP

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#7
Jan 8, 2013
 
"The forced-labor system came under fire last summer after it was revealed that a woman named Tang Hui had been sentenced to 1½ years in a labor camp after "disturbing social order" by protesting for tougher punishment of seven men who raped her daughter and forced her into prostitution."

How much do you want to bet these seven criminals had friends in the Chinese Communist Party?
CHINA HUMILIATED by CCP

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#8
Jan 8, 2013
 
"One word of truth outweighs the whole world," celebrity Chinese actress Yao Chen quoted the Russian Nobel Prize Literature winner Alexander Solzhenitsyn in a post that was accompanied by the newspaper's logo."

Yao Chen is an award-winning Chinese actress and the person on Sina Weibo with the largest number of "fans", with over 21 million. Wikipedia

Born: October 5, 1979 (age 33), Shishi City

Education: Beijing Film Academy

And a Chinese Patriot too!

Did I mention she's gorgeous?
CHINA HUMILIATED by CCP

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#9
Jan 8, 2013
 
"Sina Corp.'s Tianjin news portal, for example, arranged its front page so that the first character in each headline spelled out an acrostic message: "Go Southern Weekly." "

It seems all of China is united against the Chinese Communist Party gang!
CHINA HUMILIATED by CCP

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#10
Jan 8, 2013
 
My friends in China are very happy and excited at how quickly opposition to the Chinese Communist Party is BLOSSOMING over this!

Bye, bye CCP!

I said I would dance on your grave as I danced on the grave of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union, and it looks like it's time for me to put those dancing shoes on again!

SWEET!
UNPOPULAR

Brooklyn, NY

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#11
Jan 8, 2013
 
Wow, first there were three 'protesters' and now there are five!
CHINA HUMILIATED by CCP

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#12
Jan 8, 2013
 

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^ Yes Comrade, everything is fine. The Libyan People Love....wait, sorry. The Chinese people love the CCP dictatorship. Go to sleep Comrades, everything is secure in your thousand year reich....oh darn, did it again. Everything is secure in your Cadres' Paradise....Don't worry, nobody would dare oppose a regime like that of the Chinese Communist Party, guilty of millions of political murders and responsible for the deaths of further millions through sheer incompetence.

Have a nice big banquet with your mistresses and then maybe attend one of your CCP orgies, then go to sleep......

and never wake up, you degenerate, corrupt mass-murdering scumbag traitors to China.
LOL

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#13
Jan 9, 2013
 
UNPOPULAR wrote:
Wow, first there were three 'protesters' and now there are five!
Wow, Five! So many.
use your vote

Edinburgh, UK

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#14
Jan 9, 2013
 
LOL wrote:
<quoted text>
Wow, Five! So many.
there are millions of protestors in the world and they are growing every day until the corrupt leaders everywhere are gone make no mistake there is real anger in the world as folk know more of the history of the world now go forth and work for peace in this world that is the duty of any who say they are human
you are included
use your vote

Edinburgh, UK

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#15
Jan 9, 2013
 
china awake from the lie of ccp it is time for free thinking in your nation
THATS RIGHT

Brooklyn, NY

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#16
Jan 9, 2013
 
Love it or leave it.
CHINA HUMILIATED by CCP

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#17
Jan 9, 2013
 
LOL wrote:
<quoted text>
Wow, Five! So many.
"Yao Chen is an award-winning Chinese actress and the person on Sina Weibo with the largest number of "fans", with over 21 million. Wikipedia"

WOW! TWENTY-ONE MILLION!!!!!

SO MANY!
lct

Beijing, China

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#18
Jan 9, 2013
 
CHINA HUMILIATED by CCP wrote:
^ Yes Comrade, everything is fine. The Libyan People Love....wait, sorry. The Chinese people love the CCP dictatorship. Go to sleep Comrades, everything is secure in your thousand year reich....oh darn, did it again. Everything is secure in your Cadres' Paradise....Don't worry, nobody would dare oppose a regime like that of the Chinese Communist Party, guilty of millions of political murders and responsible for the deaths of further millions through sheer incompetence.
Have a nice big banquet with your mistresses and then maybe attend one of your CCP orgies, then go to sleep......
and never wake up, you degenerate, corrupt mass-murdering scumbag traitors to China.
WHEN hillary clinton will get proved by your congress over libya?

let me know. losers.
CHINA HUMILIATED by CCP

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#19
Jan 9, 2013
 
^ Oh yes, Hilary. yes, of course.
Yes Comrade, everything is fine.
The Libyan People Love....wait, sorry. The Chinese people love the CCP dictatorship.

Go to sleep Comrades, everything is secure in your thousand year reich....oh darn, did it again. Everything is secure in your Cadres' Paradise....

Don't worry, nobody would dare oppose a regime like that of the Chinese Communist Party, guilty of millions of political murders and responsible for the deaths of further millions through sheer incompetence.

Have a nice big banquet with your mistresses and then maybe attend one of your CCP orgies, then go to sleep......

and never wake up, you degenerate, corrupt mass-murdering scumbag traitors to China.
lct

Beijing, China

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#20
Jan 9, 2013
 

Judged:

1

1

1

CHINA HUMILIATED by CCP wrote:
^ Oh yes, Hilary. yes, of course.
Yes Comrade, everything is fine.
The Libyan People Love....wait, sorry. The Chinese people love the CCP dictatorship.
Go to sleep Comrades, everything is secure in your thousand year reich....oh darn, did it again. Everything is secure in your Cadres' Paradise....
Don't worry, nobody would dare oppose a regime like that of the Chinese Communist Party, guilty of millions of political murders and responsible for the deaths of further millions through sheer incompetence.
Have a nice big banquet with your mistresses and then maybe attend one of your CCP orgies, then go to sleep......
and never wake up, you degenerate, corrupt mass-murdering scumbag traitors to China.
all you can do is curse, as losers usually do.

go to sleep, have a dream of orgies. that would be the only way to calm your orgies of 'democracy'. you won't want to a gay, will you?

losers.

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