"We hope the media will report China in a fair and objective manner so that they (the journalists) may play a positive role in bringing about better understanding between China and the outside world."
Sun Weide – Beijing OC spokesman
It’s exhausting. Trying to keep up with latest paranoid, controlling, idiotic, and ultimately counterproductive to their ultimate goal, move from the Chinese in the lead up to the Summer Games. The Games are still eight days away and already the biggest danger facing journalists is issue fatigue. There will come a time when another outright lie from the Chinese or IOC will just evoke a shrug. So they tortured dissidents in Tibet. Isn’t the parallel bars final today?
The latest, of course, is that the IOC was complicit in allowing the Chinese to ban “sensitive” Web sites. By sensitive they mean “anything that doesn’t paint the Chinese government as golly gee swell.”
As stated, it’s exhausting. But, it’s important, so…
What Sun doesn’t realize is that journalists only report bad things when bad things happen. And that they tend to get pissed when they are lied to and that trying to control them is a bit like herding cats. If you don’t want them to read Web sites about Falun Gong then don’t make statements (it’s an evil, fake religion) that make them want to-- Interesting that he protests so much, eh? Wonder what he’s trying to hide?
Pretty much three-quarters of journalists are on Ritalin, or should be. It’s an ADHD kind of job. Yes, they are all aware about Tibet, human rights violations and the CCP’s bizarre obsession with people meditating in public, but without something to trigger them to write stories on those subjects they’ll get distracted by all the pretty lights.
This is PR 101 for flippin’ sake. Since China is used to just throwing journalists in jail that don’t get the everything-is-perfect-damn-it memo, they haven’t had much need for developing a real good media relations department I guess.
So, here we are. Pushing through the exhaustion to do what’s right. Pretty lights be dammed.