More Official Thoughts on Re-branding Propaganda
David Bandurski of China Media Project translates “Employing Innovation to Raise the Level of Public Opinion Channeling in Television” by Ma Laishun, vice-chairman at Hebei Television and head of the station’s News Center. A portion of David Bandurski’s introductory remarks to Ma’s article:
“Public opinion channeling” seems to encompass an ambitious nationwide project to re-package and modernize propaganda. The piece below refers explicitly to “all-around packaging” and “branding” even as it emphasizes serving the interests of party superiors.
It is crucial to understand that this modernization project seeks to take the boring and the boilerplate out of propaganda, not the propaganda out of news. The emphasis on discipline and the party line is still there. But there is a recognition too that traditional media control tactics, while still crucial, are no longer as effective in the age of modern communications.
So to all of you phoning to ask whether the Internet has made a difference. Yes. Of course. But be careful how you understand that change.
Chinese media are changing. And so are controls.