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Chinese journalists required to pass ideology exam as Communist Party tightens control

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Early next year, Chinese journalists will have to pass a new ideology exam to keep their press cards, in what reporters say is another example of the ruling Communist Party’s increasing control over the media under President Xi Jinping.

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The exam will be based on a 700-page manual being sold in bookshops. The manual is peppered with directives such as “it is absolutely not permitted for published reports to feature any comments that go against the party line”, and “the relationship between the party and the news media is one of leader and the led”.

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The General Administration of Press and Publication, a key media regulator, has said via state media that the aim of the exam and accompanying training is to “increase the overall quality of China’s journalists and encourage them to establish socialism as their core system of values”.

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Journalists will have to do a minimum 18 hours of training on topics including Marxist news values and Socialism with Chinese Characteristics, as well as journalism ethics before sitting the exam in January or February.

Reporters who fail the test will have to re-sit the exam and undergo the training again. It’s not clear what happens to reporters who refuse to take it.

http://www.scmp.com/news/china/article/1385849/chinese-journalists-required-pass-ideology-exam-communist-party-tightens

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