Is the Government blocking local Chinese media?

June 15th, 2010 at 10:31 am by David Farrar

A reader writes:

The local Chinese media are saying that the NZ government is blocking their accreditation to cover the visit of the vice president Jinping this week. According to them no local Chinese media allowed at any function or press conference. …

Surely there’s a way to security check the local Chinese media to see if any are crazed Falung Gong and exclude them rather than them all?
The NZ Government should not adopt the policies of the Chinese Government, just because the Chinese Government is visiting. If no local Chinese media have been allowed accreditation, then questions need to be asked and answered.
UPDATE: The DIA has sent me the following:
This blog entry was brought to the attention of the Department of Internal Affairs.

The Department has responsibility for the overall management and coordination of media activity for the official visit by the Mr Xi Jinping, Vice President of the People’s Republic of . There are a series of media opportunities over the period of the visit.

We can assure you there is no attempt to block the local Chinese media from attending various activities during the Vice President Xi JinPing’s visit or adopt any form of censorship. Invitations have been issued today to local media including Auckland and Wellington based Chinese media. We have also extended invitations to Press Gallery journalists and local Auckland and Wellington media. The only media restrictions that will apply are camera pool arrangements where there are space constraints. In such situations both the official Chinese media and local New Zealand media will have an equal opportunity to participate in the pool.

Enquiries are welcomed from all interested Chinese local media and we encourage them to contact us if they are interested in attending events during the Vice President’s visit or have concerns. We will endeavour to accommodate their needs within the space and security constraints. These are the same considerations that would apply for any official overseas government visit to New Zealand.

Internal Affairs operates an open, responsive media policy and is committed to ensuring that news media has reasonable access to information about the activities of the Department.

The media advisory outlining media opportunities is available from the Department of Internal Affairs.

Thank you for the opportunity to clarify the concerns that have been raised.

The DIA sent this to me on Tuesday, after the original post appeared on Monday. It is good local Chinese media are being given access. One could be suspicious of why it happened so late in the piece, but better late than never.
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18 Responses to “Is the Government blocking local Chinese media?”

  1. aardvark (417 comments) says:

    Come on, don’t you remember when “Free Tibet” banners were removed from K Road when a Chinese official visited a while back.

    So much for the right to free speech in NZ.

    Then there was the use of buses to block the chants of protestors a few years back.

    NZ governments are so fixated on free-trade deals that they are more than happy to suppress our fights to freedom of speech and freedom of information.

    After all, if this was a real free democracy, do you really think we’d have the rorts that go on within the halls of power these days?

    And, if the concept of free speech didn’t leave a sour taste in the mouth of governments we wouldn’t be seeing our right to privacy being eroded at an ever-increasing rate.

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  2. Sam Buchanan (502 comments) says:

    After protests against Chinese government visitors, the police general instructions were changed to make it easier to ‘protect’ visiting officials from the supposed embarrasment caused by them catching a glimpse of protestors off in the distance. So censorship of local media that may be critical of the Chinese government comes as no surprise.

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  3. Redbaiter (13,197 comments) says:

    The Chinese? Who cares. They won’t stand up for themselves and so many still worship Mao like the brainwashed bimbos they are. Why go out on a limb for a people who are apparently happy enough to support a dehumanising undemocratic system of government forced upon them by a cardre of totalitarian dictators. A band of murdering armed thugs who call themselves Generals.

    Visiting or emigrating Chinese should not be admitted past our borders unless they sign a statement declaring their opposition to totalitarian communism and disavowing any allegiance to the Tiannimen square murderers.

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  4. Manolo (13,297 comments) says:

    I wouldn’t surprise me in the slightest if the spineless National government panders to the Chinese and bends over, as Labour did before. It’s called socialist camaraderie.

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  5. Repton (769 comments) says:

    I wouldn’t surprise me in the slightest if the spineless National government panders to the Chinese and bends over, as Labour did before. It’s called socialist camaraderie.

    It’s nothing to do with “socialist camaraderie”. China has money, and the government (National, or the former Labour) wants some of it. For enough money, they’ll happily suspend human rights.

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  6. Whoops (139 comments) says:

    “Why go out on a limb for a people who are apparently happy enough to support a dehumanising undemocratic system of government forced upon them by a cardre of totalitarian dictators.”

    Please clarify.

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  7. JiveKitty (869 comments) says:

    I suspect for the majority of Chinese, concepts such as human rights and democracy have less importance placed upon them than decreased poverty and improved living conditions. Since the reforms of the late 1970s, this has occurred and is still occurring. I’m not even sure a democratic China would be workable, just because of the sheer size and diversity.

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  8. BlairM (2,286 comments) says:

    I’m not even sure a democratic China would be workable, just because of the sheer size and diversity.

    India has a similar sized population and seems to manage. And just because Fascism is more economically efficient than Communism doesn’t make it okay.

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  9. AlphaKiwi (686 comments) says:

    I’ve been living in China for the past seven years. Unfortunately there is a huge amount of Mao worship still. He’s considered a great man for liberating China from the foreign powers that used to control China and turning China into a powerful country.

    In regard to freedom, Chinese people in general don’t feel they lack freedom. You have to remember that if you’ve never had freedom, then it’s hard to appreciate it.

    There is a growing resentment among some Chinese about the corruption in the political and business leaders. Corruption is rank and the Chinese themselves know it.

    They have a policy of “Socialism with Chinese Characteristics.” What this means in reality is that anything that works get put under that label.

    If China were to go democratic overnight, you would see China break up, probably through civil war. They say they have a harmonious society, but it’s a fake harmony. Harmony is maintained with the threat of violence.

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  10. Ross Nixon (606 comments) says:

    FREE TIBET !!!
    FREE TIBET !!!
    FREE TIBET !!!

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  11. kowtow (7,579 comments) says:

    When Shipley was PM there was a bit of this pro China removal of demonstrators going on…….now she has a directorship on one of their banks .

    kowtow
    kowtow
    kowtow

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  12. stephen (4,063 comments) says:

    Unfortunately there is a huge amount of Mao worship still. He’s considered a great man for liberating China from the foreign powers that used to control China and turning China into a powerful country.

    Isn’t the official/semi-official line ’50% good 50% bad’ or something?

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  13. Sam Buchanan (502 comments) says:

    “I’m not even sure a democratic China would be workable, just because of the sheer size and diversity.”

    If a country can’t work as a democracy it probably shouldn’t exist. Let it break up or become a loose federation or something. The Uighers, Mongolians and Tibetans would be a good deal happier.

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  14. Redbaiter (13,197 comments) says:

    “Please clarify.”

    Tiananmen square could have tipped the country into democracy. The brave demonstrators needed far more support. The majority of Chinese cowered indoors.

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  15. AlphaKiwi (686 comments) says:

    In the 1980′s once China’s reforms had been underway for a few years, there was a backlash by some of the more conservative Communist Party. One politician commented, “I’d rather 99% of Chinese people die than lose the red flag.” With people like that as your leaders, it’s no wonder democracy will struggle in China.

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  16. Stuart Mackey (337 comments) says:

    Despite Australia openly admitting that China is a potential threat, Wyane Mapp is on record adopting the Chamberlain methodology for dealing with such matters (see chapter heading ‘Munich 1938′), and is ignoring why Australia has adopted this view, so this latest bit of news is hardly surprising.

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  17. JiveKitty (869 comments) says:

    @BlairM: Given that I believe democracy at present is the political system that has the potential to provide the most utility, I am not opposed to it. I don’t see it coming to China in the short-to-medium term. My views are more along the lines of AlphaKiwi (1.17pm) and Sam Buchanan’s (1.56pm).

    And yes, it kind of works in India. You’ll note that to even get to the stage where it’s kind of working, it couldn’t include Pakistan (which also included Bangladesh at one stage). That is to say, it was divested of a large area comprising large populations and it still doesn’t work anywhere near as well as it could.

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  18. BlairM (2,286 comments) says:

    Fuck Tibet, Free China!

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