China's crackdown on foreign journalists reveals much about the thinking of the country's new leadership, writes Evan Osnos for The New Yorker. The threat to expel foreign journalists (largely by failing to renew their visas) is the clearest indication yet of the approach leadership will be taking to their self-perceptions as they confront their challenges. The leadership is indicating that reporting about the sudden financial gains by individuals is a great threat and worth sacrificing the larger goals of the country in order to avoid the telling.
Reuters looks at how former Chinese piracys haven now pay to legally licence the content but also employ people to sleuth the Internet and identify pirate sites to close. It is part of a new arrangement in China designed to respect copyright and vilify the violating operations.
Robert Mahoney, the deputy director of the Committee to Protect Journalists, writes on the chill on the British press, exemplified by this week's Commons committee appearance by Guardian editor Alan Rusbridger. Mahoney argues the effort by authorities to deal harshly with the Guardian's publication of surveillance secrets leaked by Edward Snowden sends a signal to other regimes: "If the editor of a national newspaper in a country with a functioning democracy and 300-year-old tradition of a free press can be threatened and bullied, what more does an autocrat need to do except invoke national security and cite the British example?"
Jack Shafer, the media columnist for Reuters, worries that any effort by the Federal Trade Commission to regulate sponsored content could have more serious consequences than leaving it alone. Shafer speculates that the reader/advertiser/publication symbiosis may have broken down, but that is no reason to permit the FTC to determine how to fix it. At the very least, it will have to be more gentle on journalism than it has been on advertising.