Posted by: Third Tone Devil | 8 December 2011

New CCTV director on what is false news

Hu Zhanfan 胡占凡, the former editor-in-chief of Guangming Daily, the rather quaint ideological paper of the Communist Party, has been promoted to director of China Central Television.

In May, Hu gave a long speech on eliminating “false news.” In the speech, he defined various categories of “false news,” against which the authorities were launching a campaign and issuing new regulations.

In addition to the first category of false news — made-up ones — he identified two more. The second category is 以偏概全 (“using one side to cover the whole”), in other words, where, “even though a particular fact is true, it is not the whole truth, not the overall truth, not the general truth, and certainly not the essential truth” (不是总体的真实,不是宏观的真实,不是普遍的真实,更不是本质的真实). So, for instance, it may be true that my wife is pregnant, but since I am not, this is basically false news.

The third category — though it is not clear why it is different from the above — is news that are “irresponsibly” reproduced from websites, freelancers, or “internal-circulation periodicals.”

The second part of the speech deals extensively with the reasons behind the spread of false news. Interestingly, the interests of foreign anti-Chinese forces are not mentioned.

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