'army of censors'
CNN just showed viewers a "live, real-time example" of censorship in China with a live feed of its segment on tennis star Peng Shuai being cut off.
CNN on Monday morning discussed Peng Shuai, the Chinese tennis star who recently disappeared after making sexual assault claims against a former Chinese official. During the segment, a live feed of CNN in China could be seen in the corner of the screen, showing that the network had been censored. Host John Berman explained viewers could see the "actual live feed of this broadcast in China, but it's all color bars," noting it "went to color bars the minute" correspondent Will Ripley began talking.
Ripley told Berman he's "lost count" of "how many times CNN's coverage of controversial issues has been censored" in China, calling this a "live, real-time example of the censorship that's happening in the mainland" and noting, "They have an army of censors waiting to push that button the minute that we start talking about this story."
Peng hasn't been seen in public since she accused a former Chinese official of sexual assault, and there have been growing calls for answers about her whereabouts. Over the weekend, the International Olympic Committee said its president spoke with Peng for a half-hour and that she "explained that she is safe and well, living at her home in Beijing, but would like to have her privacy respected at this time." A photo of Peng on a video call was also released.
But the Women's Tennis Association, which recently threatened to pull out of China, said this didn't "alleviate or address the WTA's concern about her well-being and ability to communicate without censorship or coercion." The WTA also said it's still calling for a "full, fair, and transparent investigation, without censorship, into her allegation of sexual assault, which is the issue that gave rise to our initial concern."