Archive for October 10th, 2009

Saturday, October 10, 2009

October 1, October 10, all the same

FTV News (民视新闻台) conducted a small survey among visitors from the other side of the strait, including this putonghua-speaking guest from Hong Kong:

"Taiwanren are also Chinese"

"Taiwanren are also Chinese"

Q: Now, do you feel that October 1 is your national day, or is it October 10?

A: All the same, we are all Chinese, right? The Taiwanese are also Chinese.

Q: Talking like this, don’t you think that Taiwanese may not be too happy?

A: Not too happy? It’s just my perception…

Watch your tongue, Grandpa

Watch your tongue, Grandpa

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Related: Double-Ten Day, Wikipedia

Saturday, October 10, 2009

World Media Summit: Be more Xinhua

hail to the Chairman's important speech

hail to the Chairman's important speech

Associated Press, Reuters, News Corporation, the BBC, Time Warner-Turner Broadcasting, Kyodo News Agency, TASS News Agency and Google Russia,  many other foreign news organizations, plus forty domestic media attended the World Media Summit (WMS) in Beijing. About 300 representatives from more than 170 media outlets from around the world attended the summit at the Great Hall of the People, reports the WMS’s media outlet, and listened to China’s chairman Hu Jintao‘s opening speech:

Speaking at the opening ceremony of the World Media Summit, Hu said the summit, under the theme of “Cooperation, Action, Win-Win and Development”, reflects concerns about the challenges the global media industry is facing, demonstrates the willingness of all media to enhance exchanges and cooperation and seek common development, and shows the resolve of media staff to commit themselves to promoting world peace and development.

JR must admit that he used to think the media were here to cover developments, report facts, and publish analysis and opinion from a variety of sources.

But maybe Chairman Hu read this Wikipedia entry about mass media before speaking:

  • Advocacy, both for business and social concerns. This can include advertising, marketing, propaganda, public relations, and political communication.
  • Entertainment, traditionally through performances of acting, music, and sports, along with light reading; since the late 20th century also through video and computer games.
  • Public service announcements.

Then again, given that most of the attending news organizations are in or related to the business of journalism, maybe they should have read this one below, and have stayed away from the farce:

Journalism is the discipline of collecting, analyzing, verifying and presenting information regarding current events, trends, issues and people.

JR is struggling for a rational logical explanation as to wtf AP, the BBC, et al  were doing there. The only adequate reason would have been to report on the sick opera – but not to be part of it.

Was it for the Chinese media market? “Newspaper industries in China and India are doing fine, in much better situation compared with those newspaper industries in America or in Europe or in Japan,” Xinhua quotes Kiyotaka Akasaka, UN under-secretary general for public information.

Or did the attendees hope to get something in return for making monkeys out of themselves? Stuff like that the Chinese government will safeguard the legitimate rights and interests of foreign news media and continue to facilitate foreign media coverage of China in accordance with the law?

“We will continue to make government affairs public, enhance information distribution, safeguard the legitimate rights and interests of foreign news organizations and reporters, and facilitate foreign media coverage of China in accordance with China’s laws and regulations,” Hu said while addressing the World Media Summit in Beijing.

The tragic emphasis is on we will continue to.

Xinhua has dubbed the two-day summit at the Great Hall of the People ”the media Olympics”, adding that the phrase was coined by ”a veteran CNN journalist”.
But other observers say the event more closely resembles tribute rituals of the Chinese imperial court, as well as the modern-day functions and structures of the Communist Party.

Singapore’s Morning News puts it differently, but points into the same direction:

China displays global leadership ambition in the development of the international media.
中国显示全球媒体发展中主导雄心.

But the only organization anywhere that needs the Chinese Communist Party’s leadership in this field is the CCP itself.
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Why are Mass Media Losing Relevance, February 26, 2009

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Peace Nobel Prize 2009: The Right Choice

[…] the capital, invested in safe securities by my executors, shall constitute a fund, the interest on which shall be annually distributed in the form of prizes to those who, during the preceding year, shall have conferred the greatest benefit on mankind […] one part to the person who shall have done the most or the best work for fraternity between nations, for the abolition or reduction of standing armies and for the holding and promotion of peace congresses.

From the Will of Alfred Nobel

Associated Press is an old newsagency, and must have reported on many Peace Nobel Prize laureates. It quotes Geir Lundestad, secretary of the committee:
“More often, the prize is awarded to encourage those who receive it to see the effort through, sometimes at critical moments.”

And Barack Obama’s presidency is at a critical moment, not only at home. The abolition of nuclear weapons may take decades, and his initiatives for peace between Israel and Palestine are in the doldrums, and will remain there, if he doesn’t takes the courage to make American support for Israel conditional. The suggestion that organizations like AIPAC were almighty has too often been used as a lame excuse for failures in American diplomacy. If America wants to continue to lead the world, it must lead in the Middle East, too.

The Prize is a call to action, as Obama noted himself.

When Yasser Arafat, along with Yitzhak Rabin and Shimon Peres, was awarded the prize in 1994, nobody could tell if he would turn out to be a successful statesman, or a failure, even if many people probably claim that they did predict his failure. Arguably, he turned out to be a one. Rabin seemed to rise to the challenge, but got killed for that. Among the 1994 laureates, only Shimon Peres, now Israel’s president, can still answer the fifteen-years-old  “call to action”.

But so can Obama. Knesset Chairman Reuven Rivlin said he thought it was “very strange” that Obama had won the award and feared that the President would use it as an opportunity to force Israel into a peace deal.

Which is exactly what Obama should do, if Israel’s government itself can’t do better than now. Even if successfuly done, his would still be no warranty for peace, because it takes both Israel and its neighbors to achieve lasting peace. But at least the West will have done its homework.

And then it will be the Palestinians’ turn.

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Barack Obama – a Choice out of Fear and Hope, November 5, 2008

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Taiwan: Lies, and Honest Tries

Taiwan’s Minister of the Interior, Jiang Yi-huah (江宜樺), insists that Rebiya Kadeer, head of the World Uyghur Congress (WUC), has “close relations to a terrorist group”. According to the Taipei Times, he also accused WUC secretary-general Dolkun Isa of involvement in terrorist activities that led Interpol to issue a “red notice” for him.

Meantime, Interpol reminds us that

“The person should be considered innocent until proven guilty.”

innocent until proven guilty

innocent until proven guilty

As Jiang seems to insist that it should be for Beijing to decide if WUC officials are guilty or not, DPP Legislator Kao Jyh-peng (高志鵬) addressed the interior minister – and professor of political science – in a rather unceremonious and unharmonious way:

“You’ve lost the spirit of a liberal professor and have become a liar.”

Tough language, and Jiang protested. But maybe tough language is what it takes to bring the liberal professor in him out again. One might argue that Kao has given it an honest try.

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Related: Wanted, Hence Unwanted, September 26, 2009

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