Ministry of Truth: House Sisters and More

Ministry of Truth: House Sisters and More

The following censorship instructions, issued to the media by central government authorities, have been leaked and distributed online. Chinese journalists and bloggers often refer to these instructions as “Directives from the Ministry of Truth.”

Central Propaganda Department: Follow Xinhua wire copy in covering the “Older House Sister case.” Do not sensationalize the story. Cease production of independent reports and commentary. (January 29, 2013)


Gong Aiai, former vice president of Shenmu Rural Commercial Bank in Shaanxi Province, has used at least four household registration (hukou) identifications to purchase multiple properties in Beijing, Xi’an, and Shaanxi worth over one billion yuan (US$160 million). She is not to be confused with “Younger House Sister,” the daughter of former Zhengzhou Housing Administration Director Zhai Zhenfeng, who used two hukou to purchase 11 homes.

Central Propaganda Department: No media or websites are to recommend, discuss, or republish coverage of Deng Xiaoping and the Transformation of China. (January 29, 2013)


Ezra Vogel, professor emeritus of Harvard University, published a sweeping biography of Deng Xiaoping in 2011. Feng Keli’s translation has just been published.

Central Propaganda Department: Strictly adhere to Xinhua wire copy in covering the Bo Xilai and Wang Lijun incidents and related issues. No media or website is to independently produce any other form of report or comment, or to link to other material. (January 29, 2013)


Central Propaganda Department: The trial for the July 28 Qidong case will begin soon. If covering the story, all media are without exception to use wire copy provided by Xinhua or the Jiangsu provincial government. Do not send reporters to the scene of the incident or to the court. (January 29, 2013)


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 on CDT Chinese 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.


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