Friday Open Thread

Hi everyone, I have three questions start the discussion today, but please weigh in with anything you want. I will be in and out throughout the day. Thanks

  1. Facebook announced they will start labeling CCP propaganda accounts on its platforms, and stop taking ads from them in the US. The PRC government is not happy. Is that move by Facebook reasonable, too much, or not enough? Here are my comments on the move from yesterday’s newsletter:

The new policies cover “state-controlled media outlets” not just from China. As I have said repeatedly, Facebook, Twitter and Youtube are key to the CCP’s global propaganda efforts and its goal of increasing China’s international discourse power.

As I wrote in the March 31 Sinocism:

It is impressive how skillfully China uses information decoupling and platform asymmetry to push its propaganda agendas. The “wolf warrior” diplomats and propaganda organs are making their case globally on American platforms like Twitter, Facebook, and Youtube; CCP outlets like CGTN/CCTV/CRI, People’s Daily and China Daily are allowed to broadcast and distribute inside the US and other countries and Wechat is integral to the information consumption of the global Chinese-speaking diaspora. Meanwhile, foreign media are effectively blocked from broadcasting or publishing inside China, and from disseminating information on Chinese social media like Weibo and Wechat. PRC officials constantly talk about the dangers of decoupling, but at least when it comes to information they are aggressively and successfully pursuing a very comprehensive agenda of information decoupling in which they control the messaging for the domestic audiences while spreading unfettered their messaging globally.

  1. Are Huawei’s 5G ambitions in the developed world under serious threat now?;

  2. Does June 4, 1989 matter much in the PRC 31 years later?