Several alleged new directives for Chinese media, including one which bans criticism of Mao Zedong and Maoism were briefly circulated on leftist websites before being harmonised by censors.
The guidelines ban statements that criticise Mao and call for the removal of journalists and educators who are not loyal to the party.
The text originated from the nationalistic China Mainstream Culture website and was picked up by the leftist Red Song Society forum, which then circulated it on Sina Weibo. The website where the original post appeared has since been taken down, the post on many other sites have been deleted and many Weibo comments have also been deleted.
The website claims that the text is an account of a person present at a regional meeting at which the “spirit” of a meeting at the Communist Party’s Central Propaganda Department was passed on to the local level throughout the country.
The purported guidelines state:
“From now on, no criticism of Marxism, Leninism and Maoism can be allowed to openly appear in the media,” the account reads. These theories were the foundation of China’s political system and could not “be casually disavowed by some people”.
“All the media in China, no matter whether they are old print media or new media, should be mouthpieces for the party, mouthpieces for the people.”
If the new rules are legitimate and not just the wet dreams of neo-Red Guard keyboard warriors, it seems unlikely they’d make much of a difference, as the Chinese media isn’t exactly a hotbed of anti-Mao opinion.