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Opinion: Chinese Youth Have No Opinions, They Just Follow CCTV Ideology

A a post on Chinese website Zhihu argued that Chinese youth do not have opinions of their own; their opinions are solely based on what the Chinese Communist Party’s mouthpiece China Central Television (CCTV) has taught them. The posting was removed by internet censors. The following translation is based on a copy of the post published to Twitter:

In the Russia-Ukraine War, why do most Chinese people support Russia? In the Israel-Hamas conflict, why do most support Hamas? In pandemic control, why did most people support the zero-COVID approach? The conclusion is the same in all cases: most people are “the New Youth” or “the CCTV Youth.” They believe whatever is said on CCTV. In reality, they don’t [really] support Russia, Palestine, or the zero-COVID approach; they’re simply supporting the CCTV’s news broadcast.

[Back in 2022] these people supported the zero-COVID policy and even had a full-scale online fight against those who suggested alternatives such as “coexistence with the virus.” But when CCTV announced that zero-COVID controls would be lifted and society would open up, what happened? Nothing! The zero-COVID policy supporters held no protests, they did not argue in favor of the policy, and they did not have any inclination to fight for it. There was no resistance at all. Those people did not dare to have an opinion [different from what was on CCTV]. So, in reality, China does not have pro-Russia camp, a pro-Hamas camp, or a zero-COVID camp; these positions are all temporary. The only dominant camp is the “CCTV Youth” camp.

Source: Twitter @zhanglifan, October 22, 2023