Jonathan Ansfield

Jonathan Ansfield reports for Newsweek magazine from Beijing, where he has lived for over eight years. His freelance work has also appeared in The Asian Wall Street Journal, Wallpaper, and The News York Times. From 2001 to 2004, he served as a general news correspondent for Reuters. His main area of interest is the Chinese media and its political and market roles in democratic change.

Shanghai Earthquake, Media Rumblings (Part 2)

Sometimes the peanut galleries on Chinese news portals can be spot-on. Days prior to Chen Liangyu’s downfall last week, even some some ordinary Netizens could tell which way the wind was blowing in Shanghai. Here’s one example: On September 20, five days before the Shanghai party boss was dismissed, Xian’s Huashang Bao picked up a […]

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Shanghai Aftershocks, Media Rumblings, Part #1: Caijing’s Code

Seems the propaganda-meisters weren’t the only ones issuing gag orders over coverage of the knockout of Shanghai’s top cadre a week ago. Caijing magazine did too. Back in August and early September, as Beijing’s investigators tried to get to the bottom off the pension fund scandal, the financial magazine’s reporters kept remarkably in stride with […]

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Biganzi: Cheng Yizhong’s Quiet Comeback

The forecast for the weekly newspaper and periodicals market in China is very upbeat, but I am very pessimistic about the current situation. This, as a matter of fact, is also my view of the Chinese media industry as a whole… Remember Cheng Yizhong (Á®ãÁõä‰∏≠)? The above-quoted statement appears to be the first to be […]

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Biganzi Q&A: Li Xinde Shares Tips of his Trade

Here you are, all alone in Tongxian. How do you stay in the loop?

[Turns to his laptop] Let me show you QQ. [Clicks open QQ] Look at all these chatrooms. Here’s my “gossip” (Â∞èÈÅìxiaodao) chatroom – 159 contacts. Here’s my “in-depth” (shendu) chat room – 198 contacts. In all these chatrooms combined, there are at least 500 journalists. Many are from party newspapers and a lot are young reporters. Of those, at least 200 do investigative reporting. I can’t possibly keep up with them all.

Would it be easy for a foreign reporter to join one of these chatrooms?

Well, you’d have to be invited. Generally, no one would want to invite a foreign journalist. It’s anti-productive. We all have very different backgrounds, but we do share a general consensus. We don’t want to see social upheaval. We rather see our country to proceed toward democracy in orderly way, step by step..

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Chinese JSR (Journalistic Social Responsibility)??

Here’s yet another stir-fried tale of muckraking that has begged (and somewhat blurred) the ethical question of the hour: is the system to blame, or the journalists? For the past few weeks, has been polling readers opinions’ in the case of Bai Rundai. The senior investigative journalist for the Henan Commercial News, a six-time […]

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