Hamish McKenzie - journalism student, London, Ontario

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Chinese checkers

As a wannabe journalist about to relocate to a Chinese administrative region, I probably find this story about press freedom in China more interesting than most.

But the letter from prominent past officials and academics exhorting the Chinese authorities to loosen their censoring grips is of major significance; important to freedom of speech in China, important to political development in the country, and therefore another important step in China's seemingly inexorable march towards global superpowerdom. (As a qualified blogger, I reserve the right to make up words.)

The odd thing is, the letter -- which calls on China to "demolish every method of news censorship" -- is signed by former propagandists. It's kinda like the equivalent of a future Scott McLellan writing to a Republican administration urging them to stop lying and avoiding sticky questions at White House press conferences.

Go figure.