US media misreport ex-Xinhua journalist’s views on Ukraine issue, ignore complaints
Published: Feb 25, 2022 11:04 PM
Photo taken on Feb 25, 2022 shows an empty street in Kiev, capital of Ukraine.Photo:Xinhua

Photo taken on Feb 25, 2022 shows an empty street in Kiev, capital of Ukraine.Photo:Xinhua

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A former journalist at the Xinhua News Agency, who left the agency eight years ago, found that his personal opinion on the Ukraine issue posted on Chinese social media this week was misinterpreted by several American media outlets, including Fox News, Washington Post and the VOA, and his multiple complaints and explanations have been ignored by them. 

In the stories of these American media, the blogger, Ming Jinwei, was not only given a wrong title but had his opinions misinterpreted as the voice of the Chinese government and state media, which Ming said was to back up their rhetoric on China-related stories. 

Ming, who has been working in the private sector after he left Xinhua, told the Global Times on Friday that all the opinions he expressed on his personal WeChat blog are his own, and have nothing to do with Xinhua or the Chinese government. 

On Tuesday, Ming posted an opinion article on his WeChat blog in Chinese, expressing his views on the Ukraine issue, including the essence of the issue and China's position on the issue. He said his article was aimed at helping Chinese readers understand the issue. 

But in stories of the Washington Post and the VOA Chinese on the same day, Ming was described as a "senior editor at Xinhua News Agency," which he left in 2014. 

The next day, a Fox News story, titled "Chinese media accidentally posts CCP rules on Russia-Ukraine coverage, hint at Taiwan takeover," quoted the Washington Post's wrong title of Ming and used Ming's views in his personal WeChat blog to back up the rhetoric that Chinese media gave "guidance" on language and approaches toward the Ukraine issue. 

Several other media including The New York Times and the Business Insider also used the same wrong title of Ming in their stories. 

Ming has left messages on the commentary sections of several tweets of VOA and Fox News and sent a complaint email to Fox News demanding that they correct their mistakes. He also mentioned The New York Times and Washington Post in his tweets, but none of the outlets have replied to him or corrected the stories as of press time on Friday. 

"They did not want to correct an obvious mistake, which surprised me," he said. 

In response, Ming posted another Chinese article in his WeChat blog, saying that these stories in US media seriously damaged his reputation by fabricating his title and distorting his views. Such media were "shameless," he said. 

Ming said the incident proved that US media outlets are unprofessional, unreliable and lack basic journalism ethics. 

This was not the first time that US media outlets distorted quotes for their narrative of China stories, Ming said, noting it's common that US media use lies and preconceived notions to mislead readers. 

In his previous articles, Ming wrote about US media's tactics in reporting on China, such as badmouthing China's economy and smearing China's COVID-19 strategy.