It is new only because the invitation comes from China through “private organizations.” For decades a similar grant, but for trips to the United States, was offered by the American…
It is new only because the invitation comes from China through “private organizations.” For decades a similar grant, but for trips to the United States, was offered by the American state department’s Visitor’s Program and accepted by a number of local newspaper and broadcast practitioners. What is strikingly different is that China’s VP offers glimpses into how media under an autocratic government works.
SINCE 2016, a number of mainstream media workers from Cebu have been attending media seminars in China, sponsored purportedly by private institutions through the Chinese consulate office in Cebu.
The latest was organized at the behest of the China International Publishing Group and was held between June 18 and July 19 in Beijing, said Fred Languido who, together with Carlo Lorenciana of “The Freeman” daily newspaper and former “Banat News” editor John Rey Saavedra, who now works with the government-run Philippine News Agency, were among the attendees.
There were other participants, both journalists and state-employed information officers, from other parts of the Philippines and from six other countries: Iran, Palestine, Uzbekistan, Turkey, Lebanon and Afghanistan.
The irony – autocratic China hosting a media event for journalists of mostly democratic countries – must not have been lost, especially to the Filipino journalists, who work with the “freest and most robust” media industry in Southeast Asia.