Beijing may repeat its golden rule that all media must be controlled by the Communist Party (Urgent Notice Concerning the Southern Weekly New Year’s Message Publication Incident) but all the repetition of this dictatorial dogma does not seem to be stopping the Netizens of China from speaking up.
There has been an explosion of support for the Southern Weekly reporters and editors who — citing the Chinese constitution — called for more individual liberties.
China Media Project: Web users attack press censorship
As can be expected with an online community, the comments and graphics can get, well, graphic:
In this cartoon, posted to Sina Weibo by artist Perverted Pepper (变态辣椒), a Santa Claus whose face is formed by the Chinese character for “propaganda” (宣) spoon feeds feces to waiting children from a bowl being used as a toilet (to put it gently) by another figure labeled “Global Times: “One spoon for each person!” he says.
Global Times ran an editorial denouncing the demonstrations at Southern Weekly and the demands of the SW reporters.
David Bandurski in his piece at the China Media Project in Hong Kong about web users attacking the censors noted that the Global Times piece confuses the issue and attributes statements to the Southern Weekly reporters that they never made.