The following censorship instructions, issued to the media by central government authorities, have been leaked and distributed online.
Central Propaganda Department: Do not republish, report, or comment on those specific netizens who sharply criticize what they perceive as the condemnation of Weibo and online speech by CCTV, the People’s Daily, and other central media. No media outlet or website may carry any report or opinion which challenges Internet management. (December 22, 2012)
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.
Guangdong Propaganda Department: With regards to online rumors that plasticizers in soy sauce, vinegar, and other seasonings are 400% more poisonous than those found in baijiu, strictly follow Xinhua wire copy and statements issued by authoritative bodies. Do not directly quote from online sources of other media. (December 22, 2012)
Guangdong Propaganda Department: Someone has reported to the authorities that the vice secretary-general of Zhanjiang City has a mistress. Strictly follow Xinhua wire copy and statements issued by authoritative bodies in your coverage. Do not directly quote from online sources of other media. (December 22, 2012)
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.