Minitrue: Fang Zhouzi Digs into Zhou Xiaoping (Updated)

The following instructions, issued to the media by government authorities, have been leaked and distributed online. The name of the issuing body has been omitted to protect the source.

Do not hype the article “ Attacks : Sleepwalking Through America, Then Denouncing the Country’s Crimes.” If you have already posted the story, please remove it immediately. (October 20, 2014)

《方舟子打假周小平:梦里游趟美国便控诉美国罪恶》一文不炒作,已经转发的请立即删除。 [Chinese]

Zhou Xiaoping is a hyper-patriotic blogger praised for his “positive energy” by President Xi Jinping at last week’s Beijing Forum on Literature and Art. Zhou has accused the U.S. of using the Internet “to poison Chinese civilization” and has questioned the cancer diagnosis of former Google China CEO Kai-fu Lee.

Fang Zhouzi, himself no stranger to controversy, counters claims about American ills made in Zhou’s essay “Dream-Broken America” (梦碎美利坚), such as that the minimum wage in many U.S. cities is “between three and five dollars [an hour],” and that “even a meal at a roadside cafe costs $20-$40 per person.” Fang digs in:

Ignorant as I am, I have just heard about the “Internet writer” Zhou Xiaoping. Since he is an “Internet writer,” he must have a body of work. I searched a bit and found he’s only written a handful of blog posts. Does this make him a writer? The bar has truly been set low.

[…] Zhou Xiaoping took a sleepwalk through America, then opened his mouth to denounce the country’s crimes. It takes experience living in the U.S. to see through some of his nonsense, but for many of his claims, one need only look online to find that he is wrong. A web search will quickly show that this “Internet writer” is bold enough to lie even about the price of American cars and the market for unaccessorized iPhones. Does he think netizens are as easy to fool as politicians?

孤陋寡闻,我最近才听说冒出了一个“网络作家”代表周小平。既然是“网络作家”,好歹得有作品,搜了一下,无非也就是写了一些博客文章,这就成作家了?现在作家门槛可真够低的。

[……]周小平只是在梦里游了趟美国,然后就开始信口开河控诉起美国的罪恶。他的这些胡言乱语,有的需要有在美国生活过的经验才能识破,有的则根本不需要,只要上网一查就知真假。这个“网络作家”连美国汽车价格、iPhone裸机销售价格之类很容易上网查明的事实都敢胡说,是把网民全当成像当官的那样容易糊弄吗? [Chinese]

President Xi’s praise for Zhou has raised eyebrows on both Weibo [Chinese] and Twitter:

Update: A post from Fei Chang Dao notes that Fang Zhouzi’s microblogging account was shut down by Tencent hours after he posted an announcement that his essay and related weibo had been deleted.

真Since directives are sometimes communicated orally to journalists and editors, who then leak them online, the wording published here may not be exact. 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.