Wandering China

An East/West pulse of China's fourth rise from down under.

Talent shows get thumbs down from regulators [Global Times] #RisingChina #CulturalCapital

China takes step toward further media convergence… 国家广播电影电视总局 + 中华人民共和国新闻出版总署 forms tag team as print and broadcast regulator.

To prevent the homogeneous development of TV programs and to provide audiences with diversified choices, a restriction was announced on July 24. A news release from The State General Administration of Press, Publication, Radio, Film and Television to Xinhua stated, “Satellite broadcasters should stop investing in any new singing competition shows; shows that have already been produced, but have not yet aired, should not be aired until after the summer vacation; and the series currently being aired should be aligned with different schedules.” See Repeat Offenders (Global Times, July 28, 2013)

Also –

Hong Kong: Two powerful Chinese media regulators merge (see Mondaq.com, July 24, 2013)

According to the Plans for Institutional Reform and Functional Transformation of the State Council, the newly merged ministry of broadcast and press is principally responsible for the overall planning of the development of the press, publication, radio, film and television industries, the supervision and administration of the relevant organizations and businesses, as well as the contents and quality of publications and radio, film and television programs, and copyright administration….

The new “super ministry” was formed by combining and streamlining the functions previously performed by each of SARFT and GAPP separately on its own. Such combination does not appear to have changed the power configuration among itself, the Ministry of Culture, the Propaganda Department of the Communist Party and the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (“MIIT”).

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Talent shows get thumbs down from regulators

By Yu Jincui
Source – Global Times, published July 28, 2013

The State Administration of Press, Publication, Radio, Film and Television (SAPPRFT), formerly known as SARFT, is imposing new restrictions on televised musical talent shows.

It announced last week details of “regulations and controls” to cap the number of singing competition programs, demanding a stop in the creation of new entries in the genre and the postponing of the airing of shows not yet broadcast. It also warned the television stations to avoid “extravagance, dazzling packaging and sensationalism” in the shows, and encouraged originality and creativity in show content.

The purpose of the new regulation, as SAPPRFT stated on Wednesday, is to “avoid the monopoly of television programs, offer the audiences more options and satisfy people’s diverse demands for a more vibrant television culture.”

It has been reported that 13 singing talent shows were previously scheduled to be aired this summer.

Though many questioned whether Chinese audiences need so many repetitive shows, government watchdog’s decision to step in is also disfavored by quite some audience members. They think the decision should be made by the market.

Please click here to read the entire article at the Global Times.

Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: Beijing Consensus, Censorship, China Dream, Chinese Model, Communications, Culture, Domestic Growth, Education, Entertainment, global times, Government & Policy, Great Firewall, Great Wall, Ideology, Influence, Lifestyle, Mapping Feelings, Media, Modernisation, Peaceful Development, Public Diplomacy, Reform, Social, Strategy, The Chinese Identity

A life by the wall [China Daily] #RisingChina #GreatWall #CrossPollination

Epic journey through decades that inspires – for myself, trekking along the Great Wall in an ‘interface’ with history is high up the agenda; but to even contemplate running the distance, wow. Kneecaps and joints of steel!

For more on William Lindesay’s work, go here or here.

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A life by the wall
By Mark Graham
Source – China Daily, published April 28, 2013

20130428-083101.jpg
William Lindesay walks on the grassland of Mongolia in search of a previously unknown section of the Great Wall. James Lindesay / for China Daily

Not even a Chinese knows the Great Wall of China as well as this British adventurer and writer. Mark Graham talks to the man who has spent much of his life exploring the whole length of mankind’s most ambitious building project.

When, as a schoolboy, William Lindesay announced grand plans to explore the Great Wall, nobody took him too seriously. But Lindesay achieved his goal – and much more – by running the length of it, spending four years of his life on the iconic structure and becoming one of the world’s foremost experts on its rich history.

More than a quarter of a century has passed since Lindesay’s solo run along the Great Wall, an epic journey from the far west of China to the point where the structure meets the sea, and to mark the occasion, he has released a new book, The Great Wall Explained, with a series of stunning photographs and fascinating essays.

Please click here to read the rest of the article at its source.

Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: Beijing Consensus, Charm Offensive, China Daily, Communications, Culture, Environment, Government & Policy, Great Wall, History, Influence, Infrastructure, Peaceful Development, Public Diplomacy, Soft Power, The Chinese Identity, The construction of Chinese and Non-Chinese identities

Chinese travelers the world’s biggest spenders [CNN] #RisingChina

Winds of change five years ahead of schedule in UN forecast.

CNN reports China now matters most as top source of global tourism cash having spent US$100b on outbound tourism.

UNWTO says the volume of international trips by Chinese travelers grew from 10 million in 2000 to 83 million in 2012, making it the world’s fastest-growing market.

The Great Wall’s floodgates are open.

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Chinese travelers the world’s biggest spenders
By Karla Cripps, CNN
Source – CNN, published April 5, 2013

20130407-030839.jpg

By 2015, 100 million Chinese will travel abroad, a benchmark originally forecast for 2020, according to the UNWTO.

(CNN) — Chinese travelers are now the top source of tourism cash in the world, according to a new report by the United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO).

Boosted by a rising Chinese currency, Chinese travelers spent a record US$102 billion on international tourism in 2012, a 40 percent rise from US$73 billion in 2011.

The results fall right in line with China’s outbound tourism growth over the last 10 years.

The UNWTO says the volume of international trips by Chinese travelers grew from 10 million in 2000 to 83 million in 2012, making it the world’s fastest-growing market.

Please click here to read the rest of the article at its source.

Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: Advertising, Beijing Consensus, Charm Offensive, Chinese Model, CNN, Culture, Domestic Growth, Economics, Education, Government & Policy, Great Wall, Influence, International Relations, Mapping Feelings, Medicine, Modernisation, New Leadership, Peaceful Development, People, Population, Public Diplomacy, Resources, Soft Power, Strategy, The Chinese Identity, The construction of Chinese and Non-Chinese identities, Tourism, Trade, U.S.

President Xi’s Singapore Lessons #China [Project Syndicate]

Nobel laureate Michael Spence on a crucial point of China’s development – and how long after Deng Xiaoping’s and Lee Kuan Yew’s friendship that helped sparked the opening of China, Singapore’s lesson of one-party rule remains poignant.

As a one-party system with a somewhat similar ethnic complexion it continues to maintain popular legitimacy despite a high media literacy rate by design. Despite recent challenges, it still largely calls the shots on policy while transitioning to first world status with a knowledge economy that shifted from too, manufacturing.

Like Singapore, Japan, South Korea, and Taiwan in their first few decades of modern growth, China has been ruled by a single party. Singapore’s People’s Action Party (PAP) remains dominant, though that appears to be changing. The others evolved into multi-party democracies during the middle-income transition. China, too, has now reached this critical last leg of the long march to advanced-country status in terms of economic structure and income levels.

That said, it is most probable it is a case study of the many others they would consult in taking care to cross the river in highly turbulent times. Singapore is not definitive, but a series of stones the Chinese will feel around for before updating or reconfiguring their own socialist system to fit those needs.

From financial crises to violent revolution, what reason would China have to look that way for inspiration? Only for lessons on how not to do it I believe.

China has 1.3 billion mouths to feed. Singapore has 5.3 million. The official reported population density of about 7,257sq km from Singstats in 2011 this official stat does not consider the fact that Singapore has zoned out a 40% nature green sponge if you will, for water catchment, so true habitable space = 60% of 715sqkm).

Both cannot afford to make mistakes in their use of large scale systems.

That is where the lesson will be drawn. How it seldom makes mistakes, and when it does – it knows how to handle it in both foreign while giving domestic and alternative press some leeway for discourse.

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President Xi’s Singapore Lessons
by Michael Spence
Source – Project Syndicate, published November 19, 2012

NEW YORK – China is at a crucial point today, as it was in 1978, when the market reforms launched by Deng Xiaoping opened its economy to the world – and as it was again in the early 1990’s, when Deng’s famous “southern tour” reaffirmed the country’s development path.

Throughout this time, examples and lessons from other countries have been important. Deng was reportedly substantially influenced by an early visit to Singapore, where accelerated growth and prosperity had come decades earlier. Understanding other developing countries’ successes and shortcomings has been – and remains – an important part of China’s approach to formulating its growth strategy.

Like Singapore, Japan, South Korea, and Taiwan in their first few decades of modern growth, China has been ruled by a single party. Singapore’s People’s Action Party (PAP) remains dominant, though that appears to be changing. The others evolved into multi-party democracies during the middle-income transition. China, too, has now reached this critical last leg of the long march to advanced-country status in terms of economic structure and income levels. Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: Beijing Consensus, Charm Offensive, Chinese Model, Collectivism, Culture, Democracy, Domestic Growth, Economics, Education, Government & Policy, Great Firewall, Great Wall, Greater China, Influence, International Relations, Mapping Feelings, Media, Modernisation, New Leadership, Overseas Chinese, Peaceful Development, Politics, Population, Project Syndicate, Public Diplomacy, Reform, Singapore, Social, Soft Power, Strategy, Tao Guang Yang Hui (韬光养晦), The Chinese Identity, The construction of Chinese and Non-Chinese identities, Xi Jinping, , , , , , , , , , ,

Trees planted to form a barricade to pollution #China [China Daily]

China Daily: Adding on to the Green Wall of China, its longer-term plan to hold back the expansion of the Gobi desert. Slated to be 4500km long when completed in 2050, it currently progresses with a great ring of 13 million trees been planted over 138sq km  in Beijing’s bid to deal with pollution from industry to the north.

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Trees planted to form a barricade to pollution
By Zheng Xin
Source – China Daily, published November 8, 2012

Workers plant trees in the Caijiahe area of Beijing on Nov 1. Wang Jing / China Daily

More green plants are standing sentry on the outskirts of Beijing as authorities attempt to reduce pollution and make the city a more pleasant place to live.

By the end of October, more than 13 million trees had been planted over 138 sq km, mostly around the Sixth Ring Road.

The area was equal to more than 83 percent of the target the capital’s forestry bureau had set for the project this year. Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: Charm Offensive, China Daily, Chinese Model, Culture, Domestic Growth, Economics, Environment, Government & Policy, Great Wall, Green China, Infrastructure, Nationalism, Peaceful Development, Politics, Pollution, Public Diplomacy, Reform, Resources, Social, Strategy, The Chinese Identity, Trade, , , , ,

Kublai Khan: China’s favourite barbarian [BBC]

A most interesting piece from the BBC on China’s love-hate relationships with things foreign – indeed they spent millennia building a string of walls Ripley’s Believe it or Not claimed could be seen from outer space  (yes that is the genesis of the fantastical notion that became part of some school textbooks). The study of Kublai Khan provides unique insights into what it takes for the Chinese mind to subsume a different paradigm of thinking into their collective identity.

For those who are fans of Star Trek, the Chinese, in my mind, are not unlike the Borg – they learn, assimilate making it their own.

The very last emperor of all loved bicycles, by the way. He is said to have removed doorstops in the Forbidden City so that he could cycle around, but that is another story. The point I want to make is that there is complicated history around what is Chinese… and what is not. Carrie Gracie

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Kublai Khan: China’s favourite barbarian
By Carrie Gracie
Source – BBC News Beijing, published October 11, 2012

Kublai Khan who demolished 1,000 years of more or less united Chinese rule by setting up the Yuan Dynasty, a feature of which saw a Chinese civil service – “For the Song, it would been absolutely inconceivable that the Mongols could take over the whole of China,” says John Man, author of a biography of Kublai Khan.
Source – BBC, 2012

China has a love-hate relationship with what is foreign. Traditionally all people beyond the Great Wall were barbarians – only part human. But invaders have sometimes been welcomed, in time, into the Chinese family. One was Kublai Khan.

In the 13th Century, no-one knew how big the world was so it was not so wild for the Mongols to set off from the grassland with the idea that they were going to conquer all of it.

When the mighty Genghis Khan died in 1227, he had already claimed an empire stretching from the Pacific to Europe. His grandson Kublai set out to finish the job, and started by moving south to attack China’s Song dynasty. Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: Back to China, BBC, Beijing Consensus, Charm Offensive, Collectivism, Culture, Domestic Growth, Education, Great Wall, Greater China, High Speed Rail, Influence, Inner Mongolia, Mapping Feelings, Peaceful Development, Social, Strategy, The Chinese Identity, The construction of Chinese and Non-Chinese identities, , , , ,

Beijing curbs online dissent by menacing social network’s owner [Independent Asia]

A step back in the democratisation of the flow of information in China? This opens up a multitude of questions. I wonder what the international community might think. Will the politicians step forth to state a case, or the citizen journalists? Or has the world come to accept that China has its own characteristics with dealing in domestic affairs? Perhaps the Chinese netizens themselves will be savvy enough to get around this.

China’s hybrid of Twitter and Facebook, Sina Weibo 新浪微博 comes under ‘attack’ in order to “create a healthy online media atmosphere” (Beijing municipal Communist Party boss Liu Qi who visited Sina last week). Commanding 56% of the Chinese microblogging market, the Independent argues that ‘this platform too [has shifted to] the wrong side of the vast system of control known as “The Great Firewall of China”.’

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Beijing curbs online dissent by menacing social network’s owner
By Clifford Coonan in Beijing
Source – The Independent, Asia, published 29 August 2011

In a country where Twitter and Facebook are banned, the microblogging website of choice for 200 million Chinese is Weibo, but tightening restrictions on dissent mean that this platform too is on the wrong side of the vast system of control known as “The Great Firewall of China”.

Fearful of the spread of Middle East-style protests against authoritarian rule, and of any destabilising influences ahead of a change of leadership next year, Beijing has been asserting itself among online outlets.

Weibo’s operator, Sina, a private company, is cracking down on “the spread of false rumours” after the Communist Party told internet companies to tighten control over information online. Sina has set up a channel called “Weibo Refutes Rumours” to spread denials of false information. Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: Beijing Consensus, Charm Offensive, Chinese Model, Communications, Culture, Democracy, Domestic Growth, Education, Environment, Great Firewall, Great Wall, Greater China, History, Human Rights, Influence, International Relations, Internet, Media, Modernisation, Nationalism, People, Politics, Public Diplomacy, Reform, Social, Soft Power, Strategy, Technology, The Chinese Identity, The construction of Chinese and Non-Chinese identities, The Independent

Fighting China’s Golden Shield: Cisco sued over jailing and torture of dissidents [The Age]

China’s Golden Shield 金盾工程, colloquially known as the ‘Great Firewall of China’ (防火长城) comes under scrutiny here as Cisco is sued by Chinese political prisoners for the jailing and torture of ‘dissidents’. One of Deng Xiaoping’s favourite sayings in the early 80s, “If you open the window for fresh air, you have to expect some flies to blow in” form the ideological background for this project. Responsible for blocking out sites such as Facebook and Twitter, the developer of its Golden Shield comes under the spotlight here – “Dating back to the early 2000s, Cisco competed for contracts with the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) to help design, develop and implement the ‘Golden Shield Project’ – a rather Orwellian euphemism for the Chinese Communist Party’s ongoing effort to monitor, track and censor all internet traffic into and out of China.”

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Fighting China’s Golden Shield: Cisco sued over jailing and torture of dissidents
Asher Moses
Soure – The Age, published August 16, 2011

Source – The Age

Cisco, one of the world’s largest technology companies, is being sued by Chinese political prisoners for allegedly providing the technology and expertise used by the Chinese Communist Party to monitor, censor and suppress the Chinese people.

Dan Ward, of US law firm Ward & Ward, has brought the case on behalf of Du Daobin, Zhou Yuanzhi, Liu Xianbin and ten unnamed others. He compared Cisco’s actions to “IBM’s behaviour in Nazi Germany”.

Cisco has rejected the allegations as baseless but has failed to respond to serious questions stemming from an internal company presentation. Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: Beijing Consensus, Chinese Model, Communications, Crime, Culture, Domestic Growth, Great Firewall, Great Wall, Influence, Internet, Media, Politics, Reform, Technology, The Age, The Chinese Identity, The construction of Chinese and Non-Chinese identities

Ferguson vs. Kissinger on the future of China, and what it means for the rest of us [Foreign Policy Mag]

Kissinger and Ferguson are spot on in this review by Foreign Policy magazine. Kissinger’s perception is that China will revive itself to resume its position as middle kingdom in maintaining harmony, drawing steadfast values from both its indigenous schools of thought –  Confucian and I would add, the Tao. Ferguson’s revelation of China’s downloading of the ‘killer applications’ of the West also makes a lot of sense. A must read in first, understanding the Chinese mind and second, that the West is truly beginning to make sense of China.

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Ferguson vs. Kissinger on the future of China, and what it means for the rest of us
By Patrick M. Cronin
Source – Foreign Policy magazine, published May 17, 2011

Best Defense department of the mandate of heaven

Historian Niall Ferguson likes to think big. If most Washingtonians are satisfied with shaping a discrete national policy issue, Niall Ferguson isn’t satisfied unless he can challenge the global conventional wisdom of a generation.

Ferguson’s most recent strategic expository centered on the geopolitical implications of China possibly eclipsing American and Western power, reflections he recently shared at Chatham House in London [published as, “The West and the Rest: the Changing Global Balance of Power in Historic Perspective,” May 9, 2011]

His compelling if provocative analysis built not only on his latest tome, Civilization: the West and the Rest, but also the much-anticipated sweeping history, On China, written by the Henry Kissinger, and published today. Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: Beijing Consensus, Chinese Model, Confucius, Culture, Domestic Growth, Economics, Foreign Policy Magazine, Great Wall, Greater China, History, Influence, International Relations, Mapping Feelings, Politics, Public Diplomacy, Reform, Soft Power, Strategy, The Chinese Identity, The construction of Chinese and Non-Chinese identities

China’s loggers down chainsaws in attempt to regrow forests [Guardian]

2009: China’s Green Great Wall is a project by public servants grow new trees every March 12 to fight desertification.  A ‘man-made ecological barrier is designed to halt sand and dust storms’ as 3500 square kilometers of China is consumed by desert every year. ‘If the plan is completed as scheduled in 2050, trees will cover over 400m hectares or 42% of China’s landmass, creating arguably the biggest man-made carbon sponge on the planet.’

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China’s loggers down chainsaws in attempt to regrow forests
China’s massive tree-planting scheme masks disastrous deforestation and damage to biodiversity thanks to the country’s insatiable desire for wood
by Jonathan Watts
Source – Guardian, published  March 11, 2009

Viewed from the snow-covered hills of Tangwanghe, the forests of China’s Great Green Wall seem to stretch out endlessly towards the horizon.

The man-made ecological barrier is designed to halt sand and dust storms, just as the original 2,500-year-old Great Wall was built to keep out the Mongol hordes.

But today as millions of Chinese people seek to reinforce the barrier on National Tree-Planting Day, the greater threat comes from within, as a result of an unsustainable demand for wood. Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: Chinese Model, Climate Change, Culture, Disaster, Domestic Growth, Economics, Environment, Great Wall, Green China, People, Population, Reform, Social, The Chinese Identity, The construction of Chinese and Non-Chinese identities, The Guardian

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