(Understand China here.)
|Type||Weekly newspaper (Thur.)|
|Owner(s)||Nanfang Media Group|
|Publisher||Southern Weekly Press|
|Managing editor, design||Zhou Yiping|
|Founded||11 February 1984|
|Headquarters||289 Central Guangzhou Avenue, Guangzhou, Guangdong|
|Sister newspapers||Southern Daily, etc.|
History and profile
Southern Weekly, founded in 1984, has its head office in Guangzhou, with news bureaus in Beijing, Shanghai and Chengdu. The paper is published by the Nanfang Daily group under the Guangdong Committee of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP). It is printed simultaneously in many Chinese cities, and distributed to the whole of the Chinese mainland.
Southern Weekly currently operates upon 8 key sections: News, Defense, Current Political Situation, Economy, Environment, Culture, Supplement, and Comment, together with an editorial guideline of "Justice, Conscience, Love, Rationality".
Circulation is more than 1.6 million copies, on average, which is said to be the biggest weekly circulation of any newspaper on the Chinese mainland. Thus it is considered to be one of the most influential media outlets in China. However, as of 2007 it had the highest circulation in Beijing.
Although the CCP controls various aspects of the newspaper, Southern Weekly is still considered[by whom?] the most outspoken newspaper in China. The New York Times has described the Southern Weekend as "China's most influential liberal newspaper". Outlets such as BBC and n+1 have termed the newspaper as one of the country's most respected.
When U.S. President Obama visited China in 2009, he turned down an interview with China Central Television, and instead accepted to talk to Southern Weekly. The interview later turned out to be pale and avoided controversial topics, which was interpreted as the result of authorities' pressure. After Obama then issued a letter to the newspaper praising its commitment to press freedom, the paper was forced to omit it in its report due to government censors. Southern Weekly protested by featuring two large blank spaces on its first two pages.
The paper has built an audience of liberal-minded readers outside Guangdong Province. In 2010, the newspaper was reported to have a larger news bureau and greater circulation in politically charged Beijing than it did in southern China. Because the paper pushes the limits on domestic political reporting, its editors are often fired and replaced.
Meanwhile, being a commercial spin-off of Nanfang Daily in Guangdong Province, Southern Weekly also attracts audiences with entertainment, consumer-oriented lifestyle and sports coverage. In the "China's 500 most valuable brands" released by World Brand Laboratory in 2009, Southern Weekly was ranked at the first position in weekly publications by 4.4 billion RMB of brand value.
In one of the many incidents of the paper running up against the authorities, in January 2013, the provincial propaganda authorities forced Southern Weekly to run a provided commentary glorifying the CCP in place of the paper's annual new year editorial, which had been a call for proper implementation of the country's constitution. Journalists working at the newspaper publicly objected to this interference – which is an unusual occurrence in China – via Sina Weibo. The CCP's censorship order was believed to have come from provincial propaganda chief Tuo Zhen, a former vice-president of state-run Xinhua.
New year editorials
|Mou Qizhong Himself and His Hoaxes||29 January 1999|
|Putian Faction Series||starting in 1999|
|Karamay: A Face Reborned from the Fire||7 January 2000|
|Our Grains, Our Future (Drought Special)||26 May 2000|
|3 Nobel Prize Winners Excoriated "Nucleic Acid Nutriment" in China||22 February 2001|
|Inspection of Zhang Jun Case||19 April 2001|
|Commemoration of the 10th Anniversary of the Collapse of the Soviet Communist Party||16 August 2001|
|Thousands Kilometers to Track the Forge Letter in Project Hope||29 November 2001|
|Commemoration of the 60th Anniversary of the Victory of the War of Resistance Against Japan||1 September 2005|
|The Exclusive Interview with Obama||19 November 2009|||
|Commemoration of the 20th Anniversary of the Collapse of the Soviet Communist Party||18 August 2011|||
|To Stab That Who Insulted His Mother to Death||23 March 2017|||
2001 banned book incident
Liao Yiwu, the author of The Corpse Walker: Real Life Stories: China From the Bottom Up, a book banned in China which published conversations with China's poorest people, told Voice of America that Southern Weekly's editor-in-chief, deputy-editor-in-chief and director of the newsroom were all sacked for publishing a discussion he had about his book.
2002 Project Hope Incident
Southern Weekly disclosed that a Project Hope leader embezzled large amounts of public funds. Hundreds of thousands of the newspapers were retrieved. The journalist who wrote this article, Fang Jinyu, was fired.[deprecated source]
2005 Group Resignation Incident
Reportedly a large number of journalists quit their jobs to voice anger against the newly elected editor-in-chief, but later the Southern media group published a statement that said this was fake information.
2007 Annual Ceremony Incident
In a national gathering that Southern Weekly held in Beijing Bayi Theater, Du Daozheng, the editor of a magazine called Yan Huang Chun Qiu, was awarded the most respectable Chinese media, but a central government propaganda office official called and ordered the award to be canceled. All related shots of the ceremony were also deleted.
2009 Obama Interview Incident
2013 New Year Editorial Incident
The provincial propaganda authorities forced Southern Weekly to run a provided commentary glorifying the Chinese Communist Party in place of the paper's annual new year editorial, which had been a call for proper implementation of the country's constitution. Journalists on the paper publicly objected to this interference – which is an unusual occurrence in China – via Sina Weibo. The censorship order was believed to have come from provincial propaganda chief Tuo Zhen, a former vice-president of state-run Xinhua.
- Susan L. Shrink (April 2007). "Changing Media, Changing Foreign Policy in China". Japanese Journal of Political Science. 8 (1): 43–70. doi:10.1017/S1468109907002472. S2CID 154300447.
- "About Us- Southern Weekly". Southern Weekly. Retrieved 21 March 2014.
- Elisabeth Rosenthal (24 March 2002). "Under Pressure, Chinese Newspaper Pulls Exposé on a Charity". The New York Times. Retrieved 19 March 2008.
- "China newspaper journalists stage rare strike". BBC News. 7 January 2013. Retrieved 2 November 2020.
- "Support for China censorship row paper Southern Weekly". BBC News. 8 January 2013. Retrieved 2 November 2020.
- "China's Constitutional Crisis". n+1. 18 November 2013. Retrieved 2 November 2020.
- Zhe, Zhang (9 November 2009). "Southern Weekly—Exclusive Interview to Obama". Southern Weekly. Retrieved 21 March 2014.
- Susan Shirk (December 2010). Changing media, changing China. Oxford University Press. ISBN 978-0-19-977996-3.
- Shen Yun. "2009 Billboard of Most Valuable Chinese Media Brand". First Financial Newspaper. Retrieved 21 March 2014.
- "Outrage at Guangdong newspaper forced to run party commentary", SCMP, 4 January 2013. Retrieved 6 January 2012.
- "Southern Weekly reporters confront China censors", BBC, 4 January 2013. Retrieved 6 January 2012.
- Edward Wong (7 January 2013). "Supporters Back Strike at Newspaper in China". The New York Times.
- Chou, Bill (2014). "Is There Academic Freedom in Macau?". China Rights Forum. Human Rights In China (2). Archived from the original on 23 June 2018.
- "独家专访奥巴马". Southern Weekly (in Chinese). 19 November 2009. Archived from the original on 21 November 2009. Retrieved 20 May 2017.
- Huang, Weiting (18 August 2011). "苏共亡党二十年祭". Southern Weekly (in Chinese). Archived from the original on 5 September 2011. Retrieved 20 May 2017.
- Wang, Ruifeng; Li, Jin (23 March 2017). "刺死辱母者". Southern Weekly (in Chinese). Archived from the original on 16 May 2017. Retrieved 20 May 2017.
- Linda Jaivin, "The Underside of China's Prosperous Age", China Heritage Quarterly.
- "专访禁书作家廖亦武：自认出版 "杀手"". Voice of America (in Chinese). Retrieved 15 April 2017.
- "《南方周末》揭希望工程醜聞遭查封的原版文章". 大紀元 (in Chinese). 23 March 2002. Retrieved 15 April 2017.
- "南方周末报资深记者集体辞职". 30 June 2005. Retrieved 15 April 2017.
- "【 现场目击】 《炎黄春秋》获奖 中宣部出手搅局". www.huaxiabao.org. 6 March 2007. Retrieved 15 April 2017.