Ministry of Truth: Reporting Official Corruption

The following examples of censorship instructions, issued to the media and/or Internet companies by various central (and sometimes local) government authorities, have been leaked and distributed online. Chinese journalists and bloggers often refer to those instructions as “Directives from the Ministry of Truth.” 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.
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.
Central Propaganda Department: With regards to reports of the investigation of officials for breach of discipline in all locales, strictly publish and broadcast according to the contents issued by supervisory bodies. Do not put this news on the front page or draw readers to it. Do not investigate, report, or comment voluntarily. (December 3, 2012)
Central Propaganda Department: On the morning of December 4, the People’s Court of Gaozhou City, Maoming Municipality pronounced judgement on Tan Shizhi with regards to his involvement with gangsters. If reporting on his case, please publish and broadcast according to the wire copy provided by the court, and do not play up the story. (December 4, 2012)
Central Propaganda Department: We reiterate that it is not permitted to voluntarily report or comment on the investigation of officials for suspected breach of discipline. In particular, do not produce collections of links [to stories]. When publishing wire copy from authoritative bureaus, do not put these reports on the front page or

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