In a very ironic twist, the Chinese government has censored an article speaking to the topic of free speech. This irony is not to be taken lightly, however. Censorship by the Chinese government has long been a hotly discussed issue in the rest of the world, illustrating China’s Communist control over its people.
According to Freedom House, a Washington-based organization dedicated to the expansion of freedom and democracy across the globe, and which conducts research and advocacy on democracy, political freedom, and human rights, China is ranked highest as the world’s worst abuser of internet freedom. The Committee to Protect Journalists reported that in 2015, China ranked first in imprisoning the most journalists with an astonishing record of putting 49 reporters behind bars.
Despite these haunting facts, one Chinese magazine stood up to the government online.
In a rare defiant move, Caixin Magazine – a Beijing-based prominent financial magazine – published an article on its English-language website Monday claiming that an article it had previously published was censored by the government and an interview it conducted on free speech was wiped, as if it never existed.
Just one day after this bold second article was published, it has already been deleted from the site.
Although deleted, the BBC writes that the latest article is “still available to read as a cached version online, [and] reported that the “government censorship organ” the Cyberspace Administration of China had deleted an interview on its Chinese-language site on 5 March.”
The telling piece goes on to say that editors were told the interview had “illegal content” and “violated laws and regulations”.
This said interview was with Jiang Hong, a delegate from the advisory Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference, who told Caixin’s reporters that the CPPCC’s members should be allowed to speak freely. He added: “[because of] certain events, everyone is a bit dazed and doesn’t want to talk too much”.