5 March 2007

here we go again....

I'm sure some twit of a foreign journalist will manage to twist this pronouncement into a call for stricter censorship or an impending crackdown on all those who are not following the correct line quite closely enough, instead of calling it what it is: the usual blather by some old fogey who probably has fond memories of the day when village PA systems were staffed by shrill announcers praising Mao and broadcasting good revolutionary songs instead of the decadent pop music the broadcast today when the village head remembers to turn the PA system on.

Yes, there's the usual Orwellian sounding bollocks:

"Chinese media should play an important role in spreading advanced culture and promoting social harmony in the country, a senior leader of the Communist Party of China (CPC) said in Beijing on Sunday."

And there's also, though I doubt it'll make it into any Western news reports, more positive, happy, friendly, almost democratic, even, sounding stuff:

"Supervision on the government and the Party through public opinion should be strengthened while a healthy Internet culture should be promoted, Luo told a group of members of the National Committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC) from media circles.

He said more efforts should be made to push forward the reform of the distribution system in the publishing sector, set up more libraries in the countryside to enrich farmers' cultural life, and crack down on pornographic and illegal publications."

Sure, 'healthy internet culture' and 'illegal publications' are left deliberately vague and are there as a warning to not go too far, but the rest of that quotation, especially the bit about setting up more libraries in the countryside, and especially the bit about public supervision, sounds like the right noises to be making. Translating these good bits into real action, as always, is the key, and I'll wait till I see evidence of this action before I believe any of this, but still.....

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