State Media Mixed About Myanmar Press Freedom

Myanmar ended press censorship on Monday, and The Wall Street Journal reports that Chinese state media presented conflicting views of the news:

The website of the People’s Daily, the Communist Party’s mouthpiece newspaper, covered the news in a fairly evenhanded way on Monday, going so far as to quote a local journalist in Rangoon saying, “this is a great day for all Myanmar journalists.”

The newspaper also posted the quote on its account on Sina Corp.’s Weibo microblogging service on Monday, winning praise from other microbloggers. “Kudos to the People’s Daily website for going further than other media with this quote,” wrote Kai Fu Lee, the former president of Google China, who has more than 10 million followers on the site.

The Global Times, a nationalist-leaning tabloid published by the People’s Daily, was less supportive. In an editorial on Tuesday, it said China should never follow Myanmar’s model.

“China’s reform process has been baptized and tested thousands of times, while Myanmar’s reform is just about to bud,” read the editorial. “We would be naïve and childish if we doubt ourselves because we, a well-grown tree, look different from a flower bud.”