Chinese Soft Power and Media Discussion and Updates


tankphobia

Junior Member
Registered Member
China really needs this and they need to build this sooner rather than later. It takes time to build institutions, raise media profile, attract talent, and raise public perception and trust in these vectors of propagandistic and diplomatic warfare. Fortunately, the Chinese government is quite frankly in one of the best positions to construct such an apparatus. With the finances and pull it has, it can bribe or negotiate with the likes of google to put Chinese-sourced articles and resources at the top. The PRC can leverage so many instruments to construct this new facet of international power.

When people in the west try to hear from experts on American strategy, finances, or institutions, they'll find American and western experts and government mouthpieces in media and on the internet. When people in the west want to hear the same thing about China, they hear from American and western experts instead. Forget not being trusted. China, honestly, doesn't even seem to want to speak for itself. This is something that, quite frankly, will cost Chinese lives if reunification goes hot.
Well, it'll be almost impossible to even start in the current environment, seeing how quickly the likes of mainstream western media labels any media to do with China being state funded. CGTN would be an example where everything they post is plastered with a big banner on YouTube/Twitter stating Chinese government affiliation.

Unless those main streams of western media consumption gets replaced by an alternative they will always have a headstart against any attempts to convince them otherwise. Ultimately media response is dependent on political messaging and currently the West sees China as a bigger threat then even Russia itself.
 

dasCKD

New Member
Registered Member
Well, it'll be almost impossible to even start in the current environment, seeing how quickly the likes of mainstream western media labels any media to do with China being state funded. CGTN would be an example where everything they post is plastered with a big banner on YouTube/Twitter stating Chinese government affiliation.

Unless those main streams of western media consumption gets replaced by an alternative they will always have a headstart against any attempts to convince them otherwise. Ultimately media response is dependent on political messaging and currently the West sees China as a bigger threat then even Russia itself.
So what? This is what I complain about when I complain about self-defeating thinking. Giving up even without a fight.

First of all, it's easy for the Chinese government to just 'donate' money to already established civilian media outlets to begin building out their reach and media credibility. China should be pouring money into expanding the profiles of their new propagandistic institutions and becoming the trusted sources on Chinese news and happenings.

Take, for example, what was happening in Xinjiang. That is, quite frankly, one of the biggest illustrations of the weakness and feebleness of the Chinese propagandistic and diplomatic core. The first any western listener ever heard about Xinjiang is how there's an ongoing genocide from that psychopath Adrian Zenz. Do you know why? It was because China never bothered with expanding their public outreach and building their propaganda core!

Avoiding this could have been so easy. Had Chinese media propaganda institutions been functional by then, they should have been shouting from the rooftops about how there were terrorist attacks, knifings, and buses running into markets filled with people. China should have been plastering the social media channels with images of the wounded and the dead. With advisors familiar with western sentiments, clear effort can be made to draw parallels with the massive fearmongering against refugees in Europe and the terrorist attacks of 911 and of the dangers of Islamic extremism. Western-literate advisors and propaganda staff could even have helped this messaging spread even further by talking about how this may lead to the collapse of the CPC. Western, and especially American, leadership would just lap that up. This increases the story profile and will show clear reasoning behind Chinese actions in the mind of western observers.

Then, these institutions should have been talking about how and why the government should be doing something about these issues. The government should have clearly outlined their plan of action, talk about why they decided to disembark on this plan of action, and what the intended aims of their plans are. The first thing the western audience could have heard about these camps, had the propaganda been effective, was that there are essentially institutions that were meant to rehabilitate victims of religious extremist brainwashing! Regardless of what the truth of the matter is, this is what an effective propaganda institution affords you.

And Zenz? The moment he published his work, there should already be media analysists on the Chinese side on the lookout for him and other western scholars and 'scholars' that are trying to build consensus against China. The large and prolific Chinese media outlets should be discussing his CIA ties. Less credible Chinese tabloids should be publishing articles about him and all his weird takes. Twitter should be absolutely plastered with memes about Adrian Zenz and what he thinks about the Jews and the Gays. Propaganda isn't just about the CNNs and the BBCs. It's also about having staff that act as influencers and moles to mold public opinion. It's about twitter and reddit and youtube. Just hide on Russian propagandists, they're experts at this already. China had been handed one of the easiest enemies to utterly humiliate, and they STILL fucked it up!

The problem with this is that the Chinese state, particularly the CPC, seems utterly allergic to transparency. Lack of transparency means that it's easier to hide things, but it also means that there's no messaging. It means that from an outsider perspective of someone who's not informed on China, it will look like China is doing something that they want to hide. When America controls all the messaging and China refuses to even try to fight back, the current paradigm of a China that is brigaded on basically all sides is what you get.

The problem with the likes of CGTN and Globaltimes isn't that they're Chinese-affiliated. It's that they suck. They suck, they're boring, their presenters are uncharismatic, and the topics they cover are dull. They're not media sources. They quite frankly seem like meal ticket programs for media-studies graduates. They're not acceptable. Stop making excuses. Don't be sorry, be better.
 

FairAndUnbiased

Colonel
Registered Member
So what? This is what I complain about when I complain about self-defeating thinking. Giving up even without a fight.

First of all, it's easy for the Chinese government to just 'donate' money to already established civilian media outlets to begin building out their reach and media credibility. China should be pouring money into expanding the profiles of their new propagandistic institutions and becoming the trusted sources on Chinese news and happenings.

Take, for example, what was happening in Xinjiang. That is, quite frankly, one of the biggest illustrations of the weakness and feebleness of the Chinese propagandistic and diplomatic core. The first any western listener ever heard about Xinjiang is how there's an ongoing genocide from that psychopath Adrian Zenz. Do you know why? It was because China never bothered with expanding their public outreach and building their propaganda core!

Avoiding this could have been so easy. Had Chinese media propaganda institutions been functional by then, they should have been shouting from the rooftops about how there were terrorist attacks, knifings, and buses running into markets filled with people. China should have been plastering the social media channels with images of the wounded and the dead. With advisors familiar with western sentiments, clear effort can be made to draw parallels with the massive fearmongering against refugees in Europe and the terrorist attacks of 911 and of the dangers of Islamic extremism. Western-literate advisors and propaganda staff could even have helped this messaging spread even further by talking about how this may lead to the collapse of the CPC. Western, and especially American, leadership would just lap that up. This increases the story profile and will show clear reasoning behind Chinese actions in the mind of western observers.

Then, these institutions should have been talking about how and why the government should be doing something about these issues. The government should have clearly outlined their plan of action, talk about why they decided to disembark on this plan of action, and what the intended aims of their plans are. The first thing the western audience could have heard about these camps, had the propaganda been effective, was that there are essentially institutions that were meant to rehabilitate victims of religious extremist brainwashing! Regardless of what the truth of the matter is, this is what an effective propaganda institution affords you.

And Zenz? The moment he published his work, there should already be media analysists on the Chinese side on the lookout for him and other western scholars and 'scholars' that are trying to build consensus against China. The large and prolific Chinese media outlets should be discussing his CIA ties. Less credible Chinese tabloids should be publishing articles about him and all his weird takes. Twitter should be absolutely plastered with memes about Adrian Zenz and what he thinks about the Jews and the Gays. Propaganda isn't just about the CNNs and the BBCs. It's also about having staff that act as influencers and moles to mold public opinion. It's about twitter and reddit and youtube. Just hide on Russian propagandists, they're experts at this already. China had been handed one of the easiest enemies to utterly humiliate, and they STILL fucked it up!

The problem with this is that the Chinese state, particularly the CPC, seems utterly allergic to transparency. Lack of transparency means that it's easier to hide things, but it also means that there's no messaging. It means that from an outsider perspective of someone who's not informed on China, it will look like China is doing something that they want to hide. When America controls all the messaging and China refuses to even try to fight back, the current paradigm of a China that is brigaded on basically all sides is what you get.

The problem with the likes of CGTN and Globaltimes isn't that they're Chinese-affiliated. It's that they suck. They suck, they're boring, their presenters are uncharismatic, and the topics they cover are dull. They're not media sources. They quite frankly seem like meal ticket programs for media-studies graduates. They're not acceptable. Stop making excuses. Don't be sorry, be better.
Counterexample: Russia invested billions and decades into RT and it was for nothing when they got banned. It was ineffective in advancing their interests in Ukraine.
 

dasCKD

New Member
Registered Member
Counterexample: Russia invested billions and decades into RT and it was for nothing when they got banned. It was ineffective in advancing their interests in Ukraine.
Do you think they would have been banned if they were ineffective? If anything, the banning of RT shows recognition of how the western bloc recognizes the effectiveness of RT's propaganda and messaging. I doubt that Globaltimes would even be banned if reunification went hot considering how they'll probably just be publishing self-owns.
 

tankphobia

Junior Member
Registered Member
So what? This is what I complain about when I complain about self-defeating thinking. Giving up even without a fight.

First of all, it's easy for the Chinese government to just 'donate' money to already established civilian media outlets to begin building out their reach and media credibility. China should be pouring money into expanding the profiles of their new propagandistic institutions and becoming the trusted sources on Chinese news and happenings.

Take, for example, what was happening in Xinjiang. That is, quite frankly, one of the biggest illustrations of the weakness and feebleness of the Chinese propagandistic and diplomatic core. The first any western listener ever heard about Xinjiang is how there's an ongoing genocide from that psychopath Adrian Zenz. Do you know why? It was because China never bothered with expanding their public outreach and building their propaganda core!

Avoiding this could have been so easy. Had Chinese media propaganda institutions been functional by then, they should have been shouting from the rooftops about how there were terrorist attacks, knifings, and buses running into markets filled with people. China should have been plastering the social media channels with images of the wounded and the dead. With advisors familiar with western sentiments, clear effort can be made to draw parallels with the massive fearmongering against refugees in Europe and the terrorist attacks of 911 and of the dangers of Islamic extremism. Western-literate advisors and propaganda staff could even have helped this messaging spread even further by talking about how this may lead to the collapse of the CPC. Western, and especially American, leadership would just lap that up. This increases the story profile and will show clear reasoning behind Chinese actions in the mind of western observers.

Then, these institutions should have been talking about how and why the government should be doing something about these issues. The government should have clearly outlined their plan of action, talk about why they decided to disembark on this plan of action, and what the intended aims of their plans are. The first thing the western audience could have heard about these camps, had the propaganda been effective, was that there are essentially institutions that were meant to rehabilitate victims of religious extremist brainwashing! Regardless of what the truth of the matter is, this is what an effective propaganda institution affords you.

And Zenz? The moment he published his work, there should already be media analysists on the Chinese side on the lookout for him and other western scholars and 'scholars' that are trying to build consensus against China. The large and prolific Chinese media outlets should be discussing his CIA ties. Less credible Chinese tabloids should be publishing articles about him and all his weird takes. Twitter should be absolutely plastered with memes about Adrian Zenz and what he thinks about the Jews and the Gays. Propaganda isn't just about the CNNs and the BBCs. It's also about having staff that act as influencers and moles to mold public opinion. It's about twitter and reddit and youtube. Just hide on Russian propagandists, they're experts at this already. China had been handed one of the easiest enemies to utterly humiliate, and they STILL fucked it up!

The problem with this is that the Chinese state, particularly the CPC, seems utterly allergic to transparency. Lack of transparency means that it's easier to hide things, but it also means that there's no messaging. It means that from an outsider perspective of someone who's not informed on China, it will look like China is doing something that they want to hide. When America controls all the messaging and China refuses to even try to fight back, the current paradigm of a China that is brigaded on basically all sides is what you get.

The problem with the likes of CGTN and Globaltimes isn't that they're Chinese-affiliated. It's that they suck. They suck, they're boring, their presenters are uncharismatic, and the topics they cover are dull. They're not media sources. They quite frankly seem like meal ticket programs for media-studies graduates. They're not acceptable. Stop making excuses. Don't be sorry, be better.
As an counter example, look at Russia today, by all means they are a by the book highly competent propaganda outlet, successful in fermenting the rise of right wing ideologies and anti vax conspiracy theories within the West and having them crying out from roof tops of Russian infiltration. When push came to shove and the Ukraine war began what did it achieve? It got banned on all television in the west and its social media presence disappeared. Playing the propaganda games by the rules only works when your opponents follow the rules themselves.

Even with the most effective of propaganda outlets, your opponent can simply cut you off and there is literally nothing you can do about it. That would be completely different in a Chinese owned social media environment where the opposite would happen (See BBC leaving China), ultimately this view is not defeatist, it's just realizing that messaging is ultimately at the hands of whoever owns the platforms, which currently China is limited to the likes of TikToks, where you would see many cases of messaging for a pro-Chinese stance that is not clearly labeled/recognized.
 

dasCKD

New Member
Registered Member
As an counter example, look at Russia today, by all means they are a by the book highly competent propaganda outlet, successful in fermenting the rise of right wing ideologies and anti vax conspiracy theories within the West and having them crying out from roof tops of Russian infiltration. When push came to shove and the Ukraine war began what did it achieve? It got banned on all television in the west and its social media presence disappeared. Playing the propaganda games by the rules only works when your opponents follow the rules themselves.

Even with the most effective of propaganda outlets, your opponent can simply cut you off and there is literally nothing you can do about it. That would be completely different in a Chinese owned social media environment where the opposite would happen (See BBC leaving China), ultimately this view is not defeatist, it's just realizing that messaging is ultimately at the hands of whoever owns the platforms, which currently China is limited to the likes of TikToks, where you would see many cases of messaging for a pro-Chinese stance that is not clearly labeled/recognized.
What did it achieve? It made it so that even weeks into the conflict, despite bumbling failures on almost all fronts, there was talks of how Russia is just sending conscripts to the front lines and how the Russians were still keeping their 'real' troops behind. It made it so that the likes of Tucker Carlson were repeating Russia propaganda slogans. It made it so that there were westerners talking about how Russians were attacking to stop an American-ran bioweapons lab from releasing their virus against Russia. It meant that in the opening weeks of the war, the western public were in complete disarray about how they were to act. It meant that weapon rollouts were slowed, that domestic press was bogged down with arguments about whether the west should be sending weapons at all, and there were people hesitant to do anything because they balk at the massive nuclear arsenal that Russia has been playing up like they were willing to use.

Now Russia still hasn't managed to take Ukraine because, honestly, the Russian army kind of sucks, it's massively understaffed, it's not being used properly, and it's rotted by corruption. Propaganda hasn't managed to give Russia a victory as of yet, but in my view their propaganda has been pretty damn effective.

If China could propagandize effectively, it doesn't matter if Chinese media gets banned if Taiwan goes hot. It would already have done its job. It would have already sown division and disunity that will show itself in times of stress. It would already have created domestic uncertainly and disagreement within America. It would already have caused so many issues for the west in general to deal with that any help that could come for Taiwan would be slowed, piecemeal, hobbled by domestic politicking, or perhaps it won't arrive at all.
 

tankphobia

Junior Member
Registered Member
What did it achieve? It made it so that even weeks into the conflict, despite bumbling failures on almost all fronts, there was talks of how Russia is just sending conscripts to the front lines and how the Russians were still keeping their 'real' troops behind. It made it so that the likes of Tucker Carlson were repeating Russia propaganda slogans. It made it so that there were westerners talking about how Russians were attacking to stop an American-ran bioweapons lab from releasing their virus against Russia. It meant that in the opening weeks of the war, the western public were in complete disarray about how they were to act. It meant that weapon rollouts were slowed, that domestic press was bogged down with arguments about whether the west should be sending weapons at all, and there were people hesitant to do anything because they balk at the massive nuclear arsenal that Russia has been playing up like they were willing to use.

Now Russia still hasn't managed to take Ukraine because, honestly, the Russian army kind of sucks, it's massively understaffed, it's not being used properly, and it's rotted by corruption. Propaganda hasn't managed to give Russia a victory as of yet, but in my view their propaganda has been pretty damn effective.

If China could propagandize effectively, it doesn't matter if Chinese media gets banned if Taiwan goes hot. It would already have done its job. It would have already sown division and disunity that will show itself in times of stress. It would already have created domestic uncertainly and disagreement within America. It would already have caused so many issues for the west in general to deal with that any help that could come for Taiwan would be slowed, piecemeal, hobbled by domestic politicking, or perhaps it won't arrive at all.
I'm more of the stance that the great firewall has done too well of a job in keeping Chinese people within the closed off internet, the media is only effective because you have people reposting and parroting those viewpoints that are created by the media. I'll say point to India as a good example of using their people to bolster online presence, no matter how negative the news is about whatever india did, how much people they lost in border skirmishes, there will always be a massive crowd of nationalists drowning out all voices of dissent, the same can be said for Turkish groups online who will support each other in a organized fashion and support Turkish viewpoints.

If you want the internet to be Chinese, simply open the floodgates and we can see what equal representation looks like, they will not be able to even contest against the bilibili crowd.
 

Bellum_Romanum

Brigadier
Registered Member
Do you think they would have been banned if they were ineffective? If anything, the banning of RT shows recognition of how the western bloc recognizes the effectiveness of RT's propaganda and messaging. I doubt that Globaltimes would even be banned if reunification went hot considering how they'll probably just be publishing self-owns.
Lol your assertion is ridiculous when the evidence to counter your thesis has already failed to provide support to the following: A competent counter point media anti-western narrative would made wonders on minimizing the soft power damage China is taking. Yet, as @FairAndUnbiased has amply demonstrated that assertion is frankly evidence free, and the fact that you seem to insist that RT and other Russian led media are banned is the supposed proof of their effectiveness. How can you say that so confidently?

Isn’t the threshold of a supposed effective propaganda media tool is the ability to convince enough people on the other side not only the validity of your argument, but also accepting the values, cultural, religious etc. to want to side with you (us) and go against their own establishment media and most importantly their government?

Has this scenario produced the desired or intended investments in the west by Russia? Nope. Has the media propaganda waged by Russia helped them withstand the economic assault from SWIFT, to confiscations of national and private assets, freezing their accounts? NOPE.

So please tell us again, how and why are you calling the Russian propaganda a win and China's efforts as losers.
 

dasCKD

New Member
Registered Member
Lol your assertion is ridiculous when the evidence to counter your thesis has already failed to provide support to the following: A competent counter point media anti-western narrative would made wonders on minimizing the soft power damage China is taking. Yet, as @FairAndUnbiased has amply demonstrated that assertion is frankly evidence free, and the fact that you seem to insist that RT and other Russian led media are banned is the supposed proof of their effectiveness. How can you say that so confidently?
I can say this confidently because Russian propaganda continues to circulate in western media sources. I can say this confidently because Russian conspiracy theories and conjectures from their government and media apparatus still continues to maintain a presence in the western news cycle even with the banning of their big outlets. It is blatantly obvious for any observer to see the strength and efficacy of Russian propaganda. They're not even telling the truth, and look at how effective they are anyways!
Isn’t the threshold of a supposed effective propaganda media tool is the ability to convince enough people on the other side not only the validity of your argument, but also accepting the values, cultural, religious etc. to want to side with you (us) and go against their own establishment media and most importantly their government?
The thing is, there is no 'enough'. It's ideal if 100% of Americans agree that China should be allowed to take over Taiwan, but managing to convince 50% or 30% or even 10% of America to gum up their political infrastructure and raise the cost of American political and military involvement is still a win for China.
Has this scenario produced the desired or intended investments in the west by Russia? Nope. Has the media propaganda waged by Russia helped them withstand the economic assault from SWIFT, to confiscations of national and private assets, freezing their accounts? NOPE.

So please tell us again, how and why are you calling the Russian propaganda a win and China's efforts as losers.
Because China has and continues to allow western media sources to control all the narrative! Russia manages to sneak in their narrative to the western political conversation whereas China just can't! It is blatantly obvious which of these two countries is better at affecting western political discourse, and anyone who can't see this is being deliberately blind.
 

Bellum_Romanum

Brigadier
Registered Member
I can say this confidently because Russian propaganda continues to circulate in western media sources. I can say this confidently because Russian conspiracy theories and conjectures from their government and media apparatus still continues to maintain a presence in the western news cycle even with the banning of their big outlets. It is blatantly obvious for any observer to see the strength and efficacy of Russian propaganda. They're not even telling the truth, and look at how effective they are anyways!

The thing is, there is no 'enough'. It's ideal if 100% of Americans agree that China should be allowed to take over Taiwan, but managing to convince 50% or 30% or even 10% of America to gum up their political infrastructure and raise the cost of American political and military involvement is still a win for China.

Because China has and continues to allow western media sources to control all the narrative! Russia manages to sneak in their narrative to the western political conversation whereas China just can't! It is blatantly obvious which of these two countries is better at affecting western political discourse, and anyone who can't see this is being deliberately blind.
You continue to ignore the racial make up/structure that makes it easier for westerners (Americans, Canadians, Europeans) to relate to the Russians more since they look alike compared to the yellow people like us Chinese/Asians (tribalism is a poweful connector) and the preceding U.S. strategy for Russia that's been elucidated by famous geopolitical American luminaries like Zbigniew Brzenski (The Grand Chessboard) the still alive and kicking Henry Kissinger, John Mearsheimer etc..

I don't buy your line of argument because it ignores the many fundamental reasons as to why such an idea while laudable isn't the panacea you insist it to be.
 

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