Media Moves

Xinhua claims it’s just like Bloomberg and Reuters

May 23, 2011

Xinhua, the news agency controlled by the Chinese government, moved into nicer digs in New York, reports Jeremy Peters of the New York Times, and tried to imply that it could compete with other news services.

Peters writes, “The agency has been reporting from New York for 40 years, and now employs 41 people in the city. In North America, it has bureaus in Chicago, Houston, San Francisco, Los Angeles and Vancouver, to name a few. A slide show playing on a large screen mounted on the wall of the airy office reception area ticked off milestones. 1971: United Nations bureau opens. 1985: Cairo and Mexico City. 2004: Brussels.

“‘It’s just like Thomson Reuters or Bloomberg,’ said the tour guide, Ariel Lei Yang, Xinhua’s director for television operation.

“Except that Thomson Reuters and Bloomberg do not answer to the Communist Party.

“Xinhua is trying to convince the world that it is more than a propaganda arm of the Chinese government, but it is finding that message a tough sell. Taking questions, Xinhua’s vice president Zhou Xisheng was asked twice whether the news agency could ever be objective as an arm of the government.”

Read more here.

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