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Journalists in China feel freer to write now

出自香港新聞網 - 樹仁新傳系學生實習習作

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--095082 2012年3月27日 (二) 23:27 (UTC)


“Journalists in China enjoy more freedom nowadays,” said David Schlesinger, the Chairman of Thomson Reuters China. But he thought that it is still a difficult place to do journalism.


David Schlesinger was an experienced foreign journalist in China. He started being a reporter in China in 1991. He said that all Chinese media just followed what Xinhua News Agency, the official news agency of China, mentioned at that time.


The pendulum has swung the other way. “Many new newspapers are doing daring jobs,” David Schlesinger said. He stated that some media and even Weibo users nowadays might write things to criticize the government. That was rare 20 years ago. He believes that the freedom of speech in China is improving.


However, he also commented that China is still a hard place for journalists. One reporter has to be really sure about the fact that is going to be reported and understand how to protect the source of the information. Otherwise, both of them may get into troubles.


“Foreign reporters’ passports can be confiscated by the Chinese government,” David Schlesinger explained. He was once told or warned by the government officials that something he wrote hurt the feelings of Chinese people.


But he does not avoid writing things that the Chinese government may be sensitive to. As long as the reports are fair, the government may have no problem with that. One advice from him is avoiding writing one side story.
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