Caijing Shines with Zhouqu Disaster Coverage
China Media Project translates a portion of Caijing’s coverage of the deadly Zhouqu landslide to show that, despite Hu Shuli’s departure, the magazine continues to set the standard for quality, independent reporting in China:
Hu Shuli’s resignation from Caijing in late 2009 after a dispute with the magazine’s owner over editorial control was rued by many journalists as a sign of China’s worsening press environment, where political pressures squeeze media from the top while commercial interests squeeze them from beneath. And there were concerns too, as Hu Shuli walked off with the core members of her professional editorial staff at Caijing to pilot a new magazine, New Century News, that this spelled the end of Caijing as a leader in professional journalism.
Caijing has fared rather well, however, under the leadership of a new team of top editors, including CMP fellow Jin Liping (靳丽萍).
One of the strengths of Hu Shuli’s Caijing was its ability to report on public health issues (like the 2003 SARS epidemic) and disasters (like the 2008 Sichuan earthquake), and the magazine’s coverage of disastrous mudslides in Zhouqu, Gansu Province, is an encouraging sign that it has not lost touch with this tradition.
Hopefully, Caijing’s coverage will serve as an example to other media in China to raise their professional game.