Propaganda discipline 宣传纪律

According to the CCP’s Party constitution: “The Party’s publications must, without condition, publicize the Party line, course, policy, and political views. On highly political matters of policy and theory on which the Party has already passed down decisions, Party members may express their own opinions according to accepted organizational procedures. However, under no circumstances may they make statements against the policy decisions of the Party, whether through publications, broadcasts or other public means. Nor may they disseminate among the public any opinions contrary to the Party line, course, policy or political views. This is the Party discipline”. The Propaganda Bureau may at various times send down varying editions of “propaganda discipline.” Moreover, various media organizations may also set down their own “propaganda discipline.” Generally speaking, “violations of discipline” include “opposing the Four Basic Principles” (of Deng Xiaoping ), “opposing the basic theory, course and creed of the Chinese Communist Party,” “opposing major policies of the Party and the nation,” “endangering national unity, sovereignty and territorial integrity,” “fomenting hostilities against the government, upsetting social order and destroying social stability,” “Broadcasting political rumors, insults or defamation, or smearing the reputation of the Party, the nation or its leaders,” “propagating cult practices,” “revealing [State] secrets,” “reporting news of floods, epidemics, earthquakes or nuclear incidents in violation of regulations,” etc. Those found to “violate discipline” are referred to the Central Disciplinary Committee and various administrative units the according to the specific nature of their crimes (See notice: “Regulations on Punishment of Violators of Propaganda Discipline at Television and Broadcast Organizations,” issued by the State Administration of Radio Film & Television, 2002) [国家广电总局印发《广播电视播出机构工作人员违反宣传纪律处分处理暂行规定》的通知 广发纪字[2002]423号].

David Bandurski

Now director of the CMP, leading the project’s research and partnerships, David joined the team in 2004 after completing his master’s degree at Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism. He is currently an honorary lecturer at the Journalism and Media Studies Centre. He is the author of Dragons in Diamond Village (Penguin/Melville House), a book of reportage about urbanization and social activism in China, and co-editor of Investigative Journalism in China (HKU Press).