The Party Line: How The Media Dictates Public Opinion in Modern China

Overview

Praise for THE PARTY LINE

"The Party Line is essential reading for anyone who wants to understand the way the media works in China. Young has penned a fascinating account of journalism in the world's most populous country, where reporters are viewed as equal-parts writers and intelligence gatherers and the media continues to play a central, albeit evolving role in conveying the Communist Party's message. Anyone who's ever wondered about the SARS news blackout, the media's role ...

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The Party Line: How The Media Dictates Public Opinion in Modern China

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Overview

Praise for THE PARTY LINE

"The Party Line is essential reading for anyone who wants to understand the way the media works in China. Young has penned a fascinating account of journalism in the world's most populous country, where reporters are viewed as equal-parts writers and intelligence gatherers and the media continues to play a central, albeit evolving role in conveying the Communist Party's message. Anyone who's ever wondered about the SARS news blackout, the media's role in the Tiananmen Square student movement crackdown or, more recently, Google's pullout from the Chinese market, will gain insight into these topics and more from a Western journalist who spent more than a decade working as a reporter in China."
—Lori Streifler, Editor in Chief, City News Service, Inc.

"Most people assume Chinese media just dutifully tout the party line, since almost all are owned by the state. But as Doug Young explains, the reality is a lot more nuanced. Chinese journalists are in theory the eyes and ears of the Party. Yet with commercial pressure, they also play a cat-and-mouse game with censors to win readers. Young, who is a fluent Mandarin speaker, provides insightful and thought-provoking analysis through dozens of carefully gathered accounts from local journalists. The Party Line is a useful read for anyone who wants to understand the changing roles played by modern Chinese media."
—Wei Gu, Greater China columnist, Reuters Breakingviews

"From Xinhua's part CIA-like role to increasingly intrepid news-gathering in the time of SARS and the Internet, Doug Young's book is an absorbing and comprehensive look at China's unique media landscape."
—Mei Fong, Pulitzer prize–winning former Wall Street Journal China correspondent; adjunct professor, University of Southern California

"At a time of unprecedented diversity and fluidity in China's rapidly evolving media in the Internet age, the struggle over the future of Chinese journalism is one of the great unfolding dramas in that country's epic emergence as a global power. Doug Young draws on more than two decades of experience as a teacher, traveler and foreign correspondent in the region, combined with prodigious archival research in Mandarin, to provide a comprehensive primer on the Chinese Communist Party's decades-old system of control and manipulation of the news—from the Korean War through the Cultural Revolution, and from the Tiananmen protests down to today's increasingly anarchic new media landscape. Informative, insightful and appropriately skeptical of all sides, Young has opened an invaluable window into a formidable monopoly of information which—millions of Chinese are only now beginning to hope—may finally be starting to erode."
—Bill Berkeley, adjunct journalism professor at Columbia University and former New York Times editorial writer

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
The Party Line won Best Book on the Media Industry in Asia - Gold award at the The Asian Publishing Awards 2013 (July 2013)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780470828533
  • Publisher: Wiley
  • Publication date: 1/1/2013
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 256
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 9.10 (h) x 1.10 (d)

Meet the Author

Doug Young is an associate professor in the Journalism Department at China's Fudan University in Shanghai. He has worked in the media for nearly two decades, half of that in China, where he witnessed the massive changes that have taken place in the country since the earliest days of the reform era in the 1980s. Most recently, he worked for Reuters from 2000 to 2010 covering the China story out of the agency's Shanghai, Hong Kong, and Taipei bureaus. Prior to relocating to China, he worked as a journalist in Los Angeles. A native of Washington, DC, he received his bachelor's degree in geology from Yale University and a master's degree in Asian studies from Columbia University. In addition to his current roles as teacher and author, he is a closely followed commentator on the latest Chinese business news and industry trends on his blog, www.youngchinabiz.com.

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Table of Contents

Acknowledgments ix

Introduction xi

Chapter 1 The Agenda: Telling the Party’s Story 1

Chapter 2 Spreading the Word: The Machinery 25

Chapter 3 Ultranetworked: Caught Up in Connections 45

Chapter 4 Reporters: The Party’s Eyes and Ears 63

Chapter 5 Korea and Tibet: China Finds its Voice 81

Chapter 6 Cultural Revolution: The Ultimate Media Movement 97

Chapter 7 A Nixon Visit, the Death of Mao, and the Road to Reform: A Softer Approach 113

Chapter 8 The Tiananmen Square Divide: The Media Gains, Then Loses, its Voice 131

Chapter 9 Falun Gong: Guerilla Coverage Returns 155

Chapter 10 A Bombing in Belgrade and Anti-Japanese Marches: The Nationalism Card 171

Chapter 11 SARS: Don’t Spoil Our Party 189

Chapter 12 The Beijing Olympics and Sichuan Earthquake: Rallying Points 205

Chapter 13 Google in China: Editorializing 225

Afterword 241

About the Author 245

Index 247

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