Chinese newspaper settles, but censorship anger spreads

A Chinese newspaper whose staff went on strike to protest state censorship has come to a tentative agreement with propaganda authorities.

However, the issue has been clouded by reports of the resignation of a “prominent newspaper publisher” in Beijing, according to the Guardian.

Editorial staff at Southern Weekly, based in Guangzhou, went on strike after they accused provincial officials of replacing a News Year’s Day editorial with a state-sanctioned version.

Staff have agreed to a deal that will see censorship controls over the paper relaxed, and normal publishing is expected to resume on Thursday.

But the action appears to have sparked Chinese newspapers into action against state-controlled censorship. Dai Zigeng, editor-in-chief of the Beijing News, handed in his resignation following his refusal to publish a government-penned editorial that suggested the Southern Weekly incident wasn’t a major concern.

Censorship is a common enemy to Chinese journalists. Southern Weekly – which is owned by the same publisher as Beijing News – claims more than a thousand of its articles have been amended or nixed altogether following the appointment of Tuo Zhen, Guangdong’s propaganda official.

(Source: MediaGuardian)

Image: Philip Jägenstedt, some rights reserved

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