Sunday, May 20, 2012
China's Bo Xilai scandal revs up news media run by exiles
Among the biggest beneficiaries of the scandal are the print and broadcast operations run out of New York by Falun Gong, a spiritual movement banned by the Chinese government, which deems it a cult. It runs the newspaper Epoch Times, which carries a daily litany of unflattering stories about the Chinese government in 19 languages as well as tales of persecution of Falun Gong members.
Talk shows on the group's New Tang Dynasty Television explore the recent escape of blind dissident Chen Guangcheng and a rumor that Premier Wen Jiabao might resign during the turmoil.
"CNN made its name in the Gulf War. Al Jazeera in the 'Arab Spring.' The political changes in China this year will make us a top media player," Samuel Zhou, a vice president of New Tang Dynasty, said this month in a conference room at the network's New York headquarters. Viewership has increased at least fivefold in recent months, with at least 500,000 watching on the mainland, Zhou said.