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Entertainment terrorism given free rein in print

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Southern Weekly weighs in this week on the story of Yang Lijuan's quest to meet Andy Lau that ultimately resulted in her father's suicide.

Reporter Yuan Lei interviewed friends and neighbors of the Yang family back in their hometown of Aganzhen, a once-prosperous Gansu town that has recently experienced a drastic decline in fortune and reputation. The feature paints a picture of a family that had troubles long before Andy Lau came into the picture.

It's not entirely sympathetic to the family, but it does provide more depth to the public's understanding of the 12-year saga. As with earlier articles on Yang's ordeal, however, the feeling of voyeurism is hard to escape.

Neil Postman has been cited regularly in opinion pieces written by critics of the media circus. In yesterday's Modern Express, for example, Chen Weixing, a professor of international media at the Communication University of China, calls the current media situation worse than mere "death by amusement." His op-ed piece suggested that information itself had supplanted information about particular circumstances, and closed with the line "Amusement has already killed. What we face now is entertainment terrorism."

Reportedly, the authorities have tried to limit space given to the affair in certain areas of the media. Yuan Lei, who blogs under the name Milk Pig, posted the following last night:

News on Yang Lijuan
The Information Office immediately issued a ban to websites
Two days later SARFT issued a ban to television
But even now
The Publicity Department has yet to issue a ban to newspapers

It is obvious
Newspapers are dying...

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There are currently 1 Comments for Entertainment terrorism given free rein in print.

Comments on Entertainment terrorism given free rein in print

"Death by Amusement"?

How about "schadenfreude" or "幸災樂禍"?

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