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Dissidents Are Using Shortwave Radio to Broadcast News into China (defenseone.com)
140 points by jonbaer 63 days ago | hide | past | web | favorite | 67 comments



A majority of shortwave stations are engaged in propaganda of some form or another, beaming a message across international borders. The US has multiple operations covering the Middle East, Asia, the CIS and Central America, most of which were historically funded and controlled by the CIA.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Radio_Free_Europe/Radio_Libert...

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Radio_Free_Asia

>The station now uses more than 100 radio antennas located in countries all around China, such as Thailand and Taiwan, which trade the signal — in effect, playing a game of keepaway with the station’s broadcasting.

Shortwave broadcasters change transmitter sites and frequencies throughout the day as a matter of routine, because the atmospheric conditions that allow shortwave signals to travel beyond the horizon are constantly changing. Most modern shortwave transmitters are steerable and frequency-agile, so they can be reconfigured in a matter of seconds to provide the optimal coverage of the target area. Efforts to evade jamming are really just an extension of the normal operation of a shortwave station.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Skywave

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ALLISS

It's surprisingly difficult to jam a shortwave station within your own borders due to a phenomenon called beam skip - at typical frequencies, there's a large gap between the line-of-sight coverage area of a transmitter and the longer-range signals that bounce off the atmosphere. It's just about viable for a country the size of China, but it would require multiple overlapping transmitter sites and would be unlikely to provide consistent jamming.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Skip_zone


I bought a shortwave receiver a couple of years ago. I have great memories from when I was around 9 or 10 (end of the 1970's) playing with a table top radio and listening to all kinds of stuff on the shortwave bands.

With my radio, all I could receive were terrible religious stations. Shortwave is dead in the US.


As far as voice goes about all I can here is radio free America (US propaganda) and the religious stations. But I can hear all kinds of digital stuff. I think once I was able to decode part of a RTTY transmission from Germany. Another time I got half of an amerature Morse conversation, I think the station I heard said they from Ontario.

If you listen carefully with the right space wether there’s all kinds of stuff. I think most amerature voice uses SSB which is harder to tune than AM (but I’m not totally sure) and that’s why you hear it less. Plus a lot of shortwave users like digital since a lot of it is about minimalism and there’s a limit to how small you can make a voice transmition.


US/NATO used a shortwave psyops mission to assist in turning Libya into a failed state with open slave trade.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vUsaRM8zPoA


As an US citizen, I feel like China's lack of free press and due process is fundamentally at odds with my countries core values. So maybe we should ratchet down trade with them.

Now if I'm China, and I'm looking at what Russia just did in the last presidential election, I'm thinking, let's just buy ourselves a pro-China candidate here in 2020. And I think our system is still vulnerable.

I don't even know how China got in the WTO in the first place. There were rumors that they had some significant influence in the Clinton administration, but I guess the promise of opening up the biggest market in the world to US companies was too shiny. Bush was too busy going to war to piss anybody else off. Who know's why Obama didn't do anything...


> I don't even know how China got in the WTO in the first place

The hypothesis was a wealthier China would become a freer, safer and more democratic and stable one. Ceteris paribus I still subscribe to that view. But the effect of modern technology on the scaling capacity of dictatorships was unexpected, among other things.


What if the hypothesis is just propaganda to make moving all the manufacturing capacity to China so corporations and their shareholders can make greater amounts of profit. No one actually sipped on this koolaid, they just claimed to for sake of profit.


The main problem with this hypothesis is western assumptions of the route China would take to arrive wherever its people/govt want to arrive.

The Chinese government has a tremendous obligation to protect its citizens from external manipulative forces (history books list the primary belligerents) while navigating to a more economically prosperous and freer society (possibly).

Not a walk in the park, more like a tight rope... and regardless of whether we want to admit or not, our tax dollars help put sharks in the water under that tight rope.


Wumao, you misspelled "hostile foreign forces" in your CCP propaganda reply.

You will never accept the fact of domestic resistance to your government's infringement on basic rights all people are born with - even Chinese people.

Hong Kong, Taiwan, and ethnic Chinese around the world live well with democratic governance, free speech, free press, and no communist big brother police state.


No need for propaganda when one can reference history books and current affairs.

No doubt there will be a day when China could become more democratic but initiating this too early in development opens many attack vectors.

Anybody who truly cares about China doesn't want to introduce the risk of Chinese leaders being picked from outside its borders.


> Now if I'm China, and I'm looking at what Russia just did in the last presidential election, I'm thinking, let's just buy ourselves a pro-China candidate here in 2020. And I think our system is still vulnerable.

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/1996_United_States_campaign_...


That's a rather naive point of view. Yes free press as an ideal is great, but that rests on the premise that press' goal is for the betterment of the country. But in reality, press is effectively weaponized as a propaganda tool that's trying tirelessly to push their own agenda. I think of limited press freedom in China as a measure of protectionism, it knows it does not have the level of sophistication when it comes to pushing out their own narrative, so it blocks it off. And I have no doubt that there will be free press when the parity in sophistication is reached.


What point are you trying to make? That state propaganda is superior to free press? I do not agree.

The press has its faults but the idea of openly accepting state propaganda seems like a low value proposition.


I'm saying free press can also be free propaganda, it's not a matter of which is superior because fundamentally they all have an agenda to serve.

Also I'm not sure what you are referring to when you are talking about state propaganda. Do you mean BBC or abc or what?


Free press can be free propaganda. State press is free propaganda. Free press also has a check-and-balance in that other journalists can call out its abuses. State press has no check-and-balance, because everyone who contradicts it gets thrown in prison.

Even if someone distrusts literally everything that modern press is putting out, they'd still prefer to live in a world where they're legally allowed to publish blog posts talking about how bad the press is. More to the point, if someone assumes the BBC is propaganda because it's publicly funded, why would they want to live in a world where only the BBC is allowed to broadcast?

Saying that one system has faults doesn't imply that it's a good idea for us to switch to a system that is strictly worse on nearly every axis.


You are still not getting it, how likely would a British journalist have the best interest of China at heart? So if BBC were to publish propaganda against China, how likely would they act as the check and balance that you talk about?


No, I get what you're saying. It's just that I think the solution you've proposed is unhelpful.

> how likely would a British journalist have the best interest of China at heart?

More likely than the British government.

Additionally, under a free press, anyone in Britain can publish anything criticizing the BBC, and anyone can claim that it doesn't have China's best interests at heart. Heck, even China can publish information in Britain that criticizes the BBC. Under a state-propaganda system, only state approved actors get to publish information, which means that however slight you think it is that someone would call out the BBC, a free press is still the more-likely system for that to happen. China is better off because Britain has a free press.

In regards to China itself, the idea I gather you're putting forward is that China can't counter the BBC's propaganda on its own and therefore has to protect its citizens by shielding their ears. There are a lot of problems with this idea that boil down to, 'every time a nation has tried it, it's been awful for the citizens involved.'

But a more general argument against this idea is that it doesn't scale -- it is always easier to win an argument when you control what the other person is and isn't allowed to say. If China doesn't trust its citizens to hear news from other countries, there's not going to be a point in the future where it suddenly starts trusting them. It will always be easier to make the argument that we have to protect stupid people from hearing stupid things.

An indefinite state-propaganda system is in the long run almost universally worse for the world as a whole, and almost universally worse for the citizens of individual countries. We also have a lot of examples in the past of it being worse for citizens in the short term. But the fact that there is no off-ramp for state propaganda, and no check-and-balance system to prevent it from going bad -- that would be enough to make it dangerous even if that short-term data didn't exist.


Let me just reiterate, I agree with the ideal of free speech. And I also agree that it's better for society if free speech is functioning as intended.

But I disagree with couple things.

First, propaganda exists everywhere, in China its carried out through censorship, in the west people do have free speech, but whose voice gets heared is controlled by a few media moguls.

And I do think there are off ramp for censorship, and if I were to guess maybe in 20 years, when china's economic development matures into a developed economy and its opinions are no longer simply waved off as propaganda but carries concrete results to back it up.


> in the west people do have free speech, but whose voice gets heared is controlled by a few media moguls.

If the Western media moguls actually controlled speech to the degree people think they do, Donald Trump would not be president. I won't even deny that there are competing interests in Western media, that there are prevailing narratives that arise in certain subgroups, and even broader cultural narratives that arise across the overwhelming majority of news sources. There are lots of broad problems to address.

But it seems weird to claim that media in the US and EU are entirely controlled by a few colluding owners during one of the most politically divisive periods in recent history. If there are a few moguls controlling the message, they're doing a really crappy job of it.

> and its opinions are no longer simply waved off as propaganda but carries concrete results to back it up

In theory, I guess I agree that could happen? But if someone spends all of their time lying, and practicing lying, and seeing large benefits from lying, I don't assume they'll get more truthful over time -- I assume they'll get better at the thing they're practicing.

In regards to the wider world, the order can't be, "people will respect Chinese government opinions, and then they'll open themselves up to criticism." That's just not how respect works. People put less stock in Chinese propaganda about its economic strategies because China has a large history of lying about human rights violations and censoring critics.

People assume (not without reason) that a government that's willing to lie about protesters and ethnic groups might also be willing to lie about its economic positions and strategies. If China is waiting for other countries to respect its opinions before it opens up to internal scrutiny, then it's going to be waiting for a long time -- because the lack of internal scrutiny is the reason people don't respect them.


> If there are a few moguls controlling the message, they're doing a really crappy job of it.

Are they? These times are so divided, particularly because neither side can agree on anything and the "above the fold" news coverage is farcical. Decide for yourself whether the media companies are driving divisions for page views -> clicks -> ad money, or if there's coordination in dividing us so more of our collective energy is spent caring about tweets about Greenland or to argue the semantics of the phrase concentration camp.

There are things that matter more, like anything surrounding the fact that running concentration camps is outsourced to for-profit corporations, never mind the camps themselves. How about Amazon paying anti-union astroturfers to post on Twitter, or Walmart firing everyone they can who's pro-union. How about serious issues over climate change denial at the highest levels?

The greatest trick the media moguls ever pulled, was convincing the world their propaganda isn't propaganda.


Quick annotation here:

> There are things that matter more, like anything surrounding the fact that running concentration camps is outsourced to for-profit corporations[0], never mind the camps themselves. How about Amazon paying anti-union astroturfers to post on Twitter[1], or Walmart firing everyone they can who's pro-union[2]. How about serious issues over climate change denial at the highest levels?[3][4][5]

All of these examples were found by searching just one site.

The issues you mention are covered in mainstream media. You don't even need to look hard to find them. Even CBS is covering this stuff. You can argue that by percentage we're spending too much time talking about dumb stuff, and I'd agree with that. But its not hard to find reporting that's more substantial. Check out the NYT's politics section, just as an example.

So I'm not sure I understand this point of view, at all, because none of these issues are fringe debates, they're all mainstream issues that are commonly referenced in popular media. We did have large amounts of coverage about stuff like family separation, and we've continued to have major coverage of it since. Even Fox covered family separation at the border (although they obviously weren't as critical as most other news sources)[6].

If the point of the media moguls is to get us to forget that climate change is happening; again, they're doing a really bad job, given that climate change and the Green New Deal has become one of the biggest talking points of the entire Democratic party.

The difference between how the US News and Chinese news covers institutional problems and rights-abuses is a really strong argument in favor of establishing a universally free press. Free press talks about internal problems. State press does not.

[0]: https://www.vice.com/en_us/article/mbjq4n/the-immigrant-crac...

[1]: https://www.vice.com/en_us/article/59npad/amazons-creepy-twi...

[2]: https://www.vice.com/en_us/article/mb8y9a/the-walmart-subred...

[3]: https://www.vice.com/en_us/article/nzp7ag/louisianas-climate...

[4]: https://www.vice.com/en_us/article/bmev9a/kentuckys-climate-...

[5]: https://www.vice.com/en_us/article/53vd7n/maines-climate-cha...

[6]: https://www.foxnews.com/politics/what-trumps-zero-tolerance-...


Most mainstream pess is propaganda in the USA. You cannot have free press when the majority of media is for-profit and colsolidated into the hands of fewer companies than ever. The filters keep the truth from being told and you don't even need a conspiracy for it, it's just the outcome of capital control.

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Manufacturing_Consent


Then propose a better system. State censorship is not it.


Transition media conglomerates over a certain size/revenue to run as some new category of non-profit (imo 503 doesn't have enough categories)

Limit the number of boards any one person is allowed to sit on. Those five media conglomerates that control the US media aren't even really all that distinct.

Hell, break up the media conglomerates. Update the sherman anti-trust in order to do so.

Give the FCC more power. The lack of power is partially to blame for our sad state of affairs. Fewer regulations haven't resulted in a good system, and I'll be bold - I think more regulations will.

I'm with you that state censorship of political views is right out, but there are some standards of decency that I do think we should keep such as gore, and hardcore pornography on TV even on cable. Especially right after school.

Fund the hell out of PBS.

More Mister Rogers, fewer 20-minute toy commercials.


I encourage you to read <Manufacturing Consent>, to see how Uncle Sam was able to do the propoganda and how most of their citizens was fine with them.

It was communism, then terroism. The U.S. always needs an enemy. As an aside, 60% of americans supported to invade Iraq.

When it comes to WTO, the big money voted with their money.


Why do you think the US has a free press? The number of US media conglomerates just went from 6 to 5 this week and they all have the same advertisers. I don't see anyone having an iota of care about that.


You could also note that today people are turning to Internet instead of traditional media and what do we see there? A monopoly: Google controls almost all search, advertising, mobile phone and user-generated video market (except for adult video), Facebook owns all major Western social networks. So if the government makes a deal with these two companies, they will be able to control what majority of Internet users see on their screens. Wouldn't it be nice if they would see only positive things about one candidate and negative news about others? Both Facebook and Google are private companies and they are free to moderate and censor content as they wish. In exchange for a good service, for example, the government could make legislation more favourable for them.

But no matter how bad is this situation, it cannot be even remotely compared to authoritarian countries.


The US isn't China (or Russia, or Sweden), but when the number of conglomerates in the US has shrunk from six to five, and those conglomerates and their subsidiaries are all run by an elite class of billionares and hundred-millionaires, all with strong ties to and from various politicians, let's be honest that, organizationally, the US doesn't look totally different from China where there are also only a small handful of companies that control everything, the people that run the are ridiculously wealthy compared to the middle class?

Especially since China's internal media companies are now run as for-profit businesses, just like Comcast, Disney, AT&T, FOX - not the parts that Disney bought, and CBS/Viacom, the five media conglomerates in the US.

It is necessary to do the comparison between authoritarian regimes and democratically elected governments where all citizens are subject to the rule of law, because if you squint, they can look similar, and in these trying times it is extremely important to be aware of the key differences, even if some things can't be 100% proven inside or outside of a court of law, or haven't been yet.

Both candidates give giant piles of money to Facebook and Google, and the real power isn't in pushing one or the other, the important thing is that we don't look too hard behind the curtain. I'm all for adding select Internet companies to the list with the five media conglomerates.

Amazon is paying people to post anti-union propaganda on Twitter. Walmart is firing people for making pro-union posts online. Google controls what pops up when I type in antifa and Facebook controls if I see my friends' activities about political rallies in my News Feed.

What's the principled, moral stand going on in Hong Kong right now standing against the Chinese authoritarian regime?

What's going on in Portland?


Right. And since it's all about the dogma of Hong Kong these days, no one spends another analytical moment beyond dogma to look at the fact that Hong Kong 'press' is a monopoly too [1][2]. And such is the political nature of the 2 tiered colonial society whether it's in Ecuador or Chile or South Vietnam. An imperial unelected governor (now chief executive) together with a small group of elite ruling families (who control the functional half of the legco), each overseeing a monopolized industry, dominates the political discourse and wealth. Hong Kong never had their populist leader like Singapore's Lee Kuan Yew to decolonialize and socialize their society. And it's not for lack of trying. The first chief executive made a whole bunch of attempts to reform the Hong Kong's economy (which can no longer just skim off the top of all China trade like it could for the past decades). Productive sectors like digital park, silicon park, medicine parks were all turned down. The colonial oligarchy instead turned inwards to monetize their unregulated political and legal systems, focusing on elite sectors like private banking, wealth management, real estate etc which does nothing for the common people and the youth where poverty rate is 20% and cost of housing per median annual income is double that of San Francisco.

An extradition system strikes right at the heart of the private bankers' clienteles but the moment the popular protest starts turning towards societal or class problems like the lack of housing and breaking their House of Lords++, a _single_ tycoon bought out all the newspapers' front pages urging restraint for the protest [3].

[1] https://beta.washingtonpost.com/outlook/five-myths/five-myth... [2] https://chinaworker.info/en/2013/10/21/4789/ [3] https://asia.nikkei.com/Spotlight/Hong-Kong-protests/Hong-Ko...


Ya, excellent points. I'd probably still make minor pedantic arguments about whether brave new world or 1984 is easier to defeat but I generally agree otherwise. i.e. if the people's lives are going down the tube, you know there's specifically one person to revolt against. If lawmaking has a zero percent correlation with popular opinions [1] and your elected officials spend 2/3 of the time fundraising [2], what do you revolt against?

[1] https://scholar.princeton.edu/sites/default/files/mgilens/fi...

[2] https://fortune.com/2016/04/04/john-oliver-congress-fundrais...


> "Why do you think the US has a free press?"

That's a fairly extreme claim particularly in the context of discussing Chinese state run media and the near total control that state exerts over the flow of information. Here in the US, there has been a lot of reporting about how one media conglomerate (funny how that reporting is allowed in a country supposedly without a free press...) influences the current executive and his public policy [1][2][3].

There is also plenty of criticism over the consolidation in the media landscape and the slow death of traditional journalism [4].

[1]: https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2019/03/11/the-making-of-... [2]: https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/hannitys-rising-role... [3]: https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2019/04/03/magazine/rupe... [4]: https://billmoyers.com/story/media-consolidation-should-anyo...


China is worse, but that says nothing about the major conflicts of interest plaguing our media right now.

It is not very free.


It’s free and chaotic, you can read anything. If you try to read anything in China you go to jail.


There was a pro china candidate, obama, and he did it for free. He didn't even flinch an eye when china prevented or restricted us companies from doing business in china, neither did he strongly call them out for intellectual property theft.


>Now if I'm China, and I'm looking at what Russia just did in the last presidential election

Can you explain to me what Russia did that every other country didn't do? Please respond with evidence before you downvote.


Nobody responded with any evidence to suggest Russia did anything other countries like UK with Cambridge Analytica didn't do, but there sure were a lot of downvotes!

Time to open your mind to reality, Hacker News.


I don’t disagree with your stances but I see this often enough for other topics so I’ll mention my take on it: responding to an ask for evidence is sort of a trap to enter an argument with someone who already has responses for your evidence.

Basically the ask for evidence is not a legitimate query for info, it’s usually disingenuous.

That’s why I don’t respond to people who say things like “what evidence do you have that global warming is real” or “what evidence is there that the earth is round”


I wonder if when starlink goes live globally if it will be something that allows anyone anywhere to connect to the internet without any great firewall? It would be like shortwave radio on steroids...


That's not true. Existing satellites can provide internet access across the whole world, but the hardware required to access those satellites is often highly regulated or just illegal for normal citizens to own. A Starlink terminal will be just as illegal in China in the future as a BGAN/VSAT/Iridium Certus terminal is today.


In near future, the antennas will be too expensive to use for dissidents. Then, China and Russia already demonstrated they have means to destroy satellites. The satellites will be required either to disable service over their geographical regions, or comply to local regulations.


China can disrupt any above its country with lasers. It has researched this.


Haha...thinking private corporatiom ownership will allow any sort of true freedom. Silly.


It won't be long till dissidents are using FT8. Audio is dead. http://www.arrl.org/news/ft8-mode-is-latest-bright-shiny-obj...


Probably JS8Call instead. It's an FT8 fork that allows for arbitrary text. Worth checking out.


It'll take a ridiculously loooooong time for them to even say "CHINA BAD. HK GOOD. DON'T BELIEVE TV."

VOA experimented successfully with using other MFSK modes that can be decoded asynchronously, quickly, and with fldigi, and its now a regular occurrence. https://voaradiogram.net/


That message would take about one minute to send. But it could be sent with very low power and received well below the noise floor.

I'm not suggesting JS8 is the ideal communication mode for dissidents, only that it's far better than FT8 for arbitrary text.


> Shortwave (really, AM) radio can be a powerful tool, but it can be drowned out by a more powerful signal.

https://www.sigidwiki.com/wiki/Chinese_Firedrake_Jammer


> Shortwave (really, AM)

Just bought some am/fm/sw radio yesterday.

I was hopping to hear some SW radios, just like I did 30 years ago, when it was a good way to learn a bit more of other languages.

I'm having trouble finding any... Does anyone still do it? Any recommendations?


There's quite a bit of Spanish-language broadcasting that you can pick up from the US. Also check out Radio Havana Cuba; they have a strong signal and are relatively close.


I really wouldn't recommend shortwave for that. It is mostly religious nutcase stations from around the world.

Make sure to go into an empty field or wood. Everyone running dimmer switches, homes full of IoT are blasting HF noise into your radio.


The Voice of America still has Mandarin short wave broadcasts.[1][2] Whether anybody is still listening is a big question.

[1] https://www.short-wave.info/index.php

[2] https://www.insidevoa.com/p/6440.html


I have listened to it many many years ago. It's filled with propaganda and misinformation to incite disorder/riot and distrust of the government.

Another fun fact:

The intent of the legislation in 1948 was to protect the American public from propaganda actions by their own government and to have no competition with private American companies.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Voice_of_America


Say what you will about the quality of the news reporting itself, I'll respect that as a fair criticism, but it's not propaganda.

Unlike any other news agencies that I know of, VOA has an actual U.S. law in place that legally separates editorial control from any political influence or interference.

It's referred to as "the firewall" internally, and VOA's journalists receive yearly training on that. The 1948 legislation you've cited has been updated number of times, with the firewall codified in 1994.

The training isn't some random click here and sign this paper and we're covered thing. It's a well-developed, focused, small group training with comprehension discussions.

Here's an actual video of the exact training VOA journalists get. There is no political interference in the newsrooms: https://www.insidevoa.com/a/4533468.html


[flagged]


It looks like you've been using HN primarily for political and national battle, which is not what this site is for. Some political overlap is inevitable (https://hn.algolia.com/?query=by:dang%20political%20overlap&...), and occasionally commenting on political topics is ok, but when you cross the line into doing that primarily (which is the test we apply: https://hn.algolia.com/?query=by:dang%20primarily%20test&sor...), you're violating the intended use of the site, and we ban accounts that do that.

Intellectual curiosity is not a battle emotion. Would you please review https://news.ycombinator.com/newsguidelines.html and use HN as intended?


[citation needed]



your very directed criticism of FLG still doesnt make them sound anywhere near as bad as the CCP (the group murdering and silencing them), so...


... so it's perfectly acceptable that they don't get any funding from the US government, but only from donations by people who presumably are okay with their various religious beliefs.


[flagged]


Ironically, bringing up other religions and organ theft is itself whataboutism here.


[flagged]


I looked through the account's history. Your statement isn't accurate, and you've violated the site guidelines by posting this. If you're worried about abuse, please email us at hn@ycombinator.com, as they ask. Don't post accusations of astroturfing or shillage in the threads—the poison that adds to the site is much worse than whatever it's trying to combat.

https://news.ycombinator.com/newsguidelines.html


Thanks for looking Dang. I don't agree with you this time though. Hiding abuse out of the comment chain behind emails is a good way to make things disappear. What kind of community is this if you can't question the motives of someone with a penchant for only replying to policital threads of a certain flavor?

His profile is public, it's not like I made everything up. He posts on articles with "China" in the name about 90% of the time. And basically never replies to his own comment responses or posts that don't relate to China.

> Don't post accusations of astroturfing or shillage in the threads—the poison that adds to the site is much worse than whatever it's trying to combat.

I don't agree at all. If I didn't say anything about the guy's post history would you have checked? I don't think so. And even though you did, it's very clearly biased towards "China" news articles and the CCP party line.

I'm out. Leaving on my own this time. I appreciate the great work you and the moderators do. But if you can't admit the most obvious AstroTurf shill account I've ever seen is real, there's no point sticking around being a thorn in your side.


> What kind of community is this if you can't question the motives of someone with a penchant for only replying to policital threads of a certain flavor?

The kind of community where users are asked to assume good faith and not allowed to sling mud at each other.

> If I didn't say anything about the guy's post history would you have checked?

In this case I already had, because another user followed the guidelines and emailed us.

> it's very clearly biased towards "China" news articles and the CCP party line

Every account that posts on political issues is biased toward their point of view. Alas, many users, when confronted with an opposing bias, simply can't imagine that someone else sincerely disagrees with them. That's absurd, of course, but it's what underlies virtually every accusation of astroturfing/shilling/spying on political topics, including, I'm pretty sure, the one you're making here.

> the most obvious AstroTurf shill account I've ever seen

That is a good example of what I just described, as anyone who looks carefully at the account's public history will see. It's true that they were breaking the site guidelines by using HN primarily for political battle. But that's not evidence of astroturfing or shilling, it's evidence that they're fighting for the group they're loyal to. Such loyalty isn't hard to understand and needs no sinister explanation. It's as simple as that people come from different backgrounds. HN is a diverse international community, so many different backgrounds are represented here. As long as people follow the guidelines, they have a right to comment without being denounced or smeared.


Why is "pro democracy" in quotes? Is there any evidence the broadcasts themselves are not supportive of democratic rule of law, autonomous HK, and so on?

I don't get what you're getting at. But you don't seem to reply to your posts, so oh well.


https://www.theepochtimes.com

Read it and judge for yourself


I wonder why they've chosen to report on news themselves, rather than pipe in AP/Reuters or something similar. Perhaps because no one else is covering the same stories?


"It was his response to a dearth of Chinese-language news coverage that wasn’t heavily influenced by the Chinese government." So maybe because AP/Reuters/etc. are biased?

It also seems from browsing their site that most articles are summaries/commentaries of other sources.


There are hundreds of news outlets around the world covering China that aren't biased towards PRC...




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