- Overall, we rate Weibo Left Biased and Questionable due to censorship, the promotion of propaganda, and control by the Chinese Communist Party.
Reasoning: State Propaganda, Censorship, Misinformation
Bias Rating: LEFT
Factual Reporting: MIXED
Press Freedom Rank: TOTAL OPPRESSION
Media Type: Website
Traffic/Popularity: High Traffic
MBFC Credibility Rating: LOW CREDIBILITY
Launched in 2009 by Sina Corporation, Weibo (Sina Weibo) is a microblog / Chinese social media platform. It is similar to Twitter, therefore, often referred to as “Chinese Twitter” or a Twitter clone. It is based in Beijing, China, and caters to the Chinese people. The Chairman is Charles Chao.
Funded by / Ownership
Analysis / Bias
The media of China is 100% controlled by the Chinese government, which is well known for enforcing strict censorship on the internet. The Chinese censorship and surveillance system is commonly known as the Great Firewall or Golden Shield Project, which works under the Ministry of Public Security.
In review, Weibo has similar features to American social media sites, particularly Twitter. It also has features similar to Instagram and Facebook, such as uploading short videos that disappear after 24 hrs called “Weibo stories.” Besides those features, they also have a game center Game.Weibo.Com, which provides a variety of online games for users.
The Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) describes how Weibo’s censorship works in an article titled “The business of censorship: Documents show how Weibo filters sensitive news in China.” Furthermore, social media sites that do not comply with censorship rules, such as Facebook and Twitter, are usually blocked in China.
To be allowed to operate in China, internet content providers typically have their content filtered or blocked with user accounts deleted if they don’t comply with government policy. Political speech that portrays the government or the communist party in a negative light gets censored; for example, when a post is censored, a message appears that reads, “Sorry. This post has been deleted. Please see…” A ProPublica article called “China’s Memory Hole“ shows how images are censored and erased from Weibo.
In general, like all media in China, Weibo is an arm of the communist government that censors content to promote pro-Chinese propaganda.
Failed Fact Checks
Overall, we rate Weibo Left Biased and Questionable due to censorship, the promotion of propaganda, and control by the Chinese Communist Party. (M. Huitsing 06/20/2022)
Last Updated on July 1, 2023 by Media Bias Fact Check
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