Event Recap - Shifting Landscapes: The Changing Face of Reporting on China
Program 2 out of 8 of our second event of seven in the Seeking Truth Through Facts U.S.-China Program Series
August 28, 2023 - Asia Society Northern California hosted a discussion on Shifting Landscapes: The Changing Face of Reporting on China. The speakers were Melinda Liu (Beijing Bureau Chief of Newsweek), John Ruwitch (International Desk Correspondent for the National Public Radio), and Ann Scott Tyson (Beijing Bureau Chief of The Christian Science Monitor). Mary Kay Magistad (Deputy Director for Asia Society’s Center on U.S.-China Relations) moderated the conversation.
Mary Kay Magistad began by explaining the current situation in China for foreign journalists, which includes increasing government distrust of journalists and tightening of access to people, places, and information. Melinda Liu, John Ruwitch, and Ann Scott Tyson then shared stories of their time as journalists in China; the warm approach of local Chinese towards foreigners; as well as the shifting landscape of politics in China which is increasingly limiting transparency. Speakers addressed the use of social media and COVID-19 apps in China to surveil journalists, as well as the palpable pessimism felt by the local population during and after the COVID-19 pandemic. Other topics explored include difficulty obtaining Chinese visas for foreign journalists, harassment of foreign journalists, and the need for U.S. journalists to tell the human stories of individuals and communities abroad with distinction from the stressful geopolitics of a nation.
This public program was the second event of seven in the Seeking Truth Through Facts U.S.-China Program Series, which focuses on new strategic frameworks for the bilateral relationship, plurilateral relationships, rebalancing trade, national security, technology, and climate change; as well as the global impact of the political and economic landscape.