Censorship Vault: No Dozing, No Cotton-Picking!

Editor’s Note: From the Censorship Vault features previously untranslated censorship instructions from the archives of the CDT series Directives from the Ministry of Truth (真理部指令). These instructions, issued to the media and/or Internet companies by various central (and sometimes local) government authorities, have been leaked and distributed online. CDT has collected the selections we translate here from a variety of sources and has checked them against official Chinese media reports to confirm their implementation.

The following directive mentions a news segment called “Mediocrity Management and Accountability” (治庸问责). A government accountability program of the same name began in the city of Wuhan and has since spread throughout Hubei Province. It is a system of self-examination to improve government efficiency. Unfortunately, last October the people of Jingzhou miss the chance to see just how far their local government has to go:

Hubei Provincial Department of Propaganda: Today and tomorrow, the “Mediocrity Management and Accountability” segment of Jingzhou News Simulcast may include revealing clips of local officials dozing off, playing with their mobile phone and picking at cotton bolls during meetings. We ask that news and television organizations not transmit these clips. (October 7, 2011)


Note: Since directives are sometimes communicated orally to journalists and editors, who then leak them online, the wording published here may not be exact. The original publication date is noted after the directives; the date given may indicate when the directive was leaked, rather than when it was issued. CDT does its utmost to verify dates and wording, but also takes precautions to protect the source.