“Two main things distinguish this incident. First, people from all walks of life have participated in it, unlike before. Previously, incidents were often confined to a single region or industry. This one is cross-region, cross-industry, and has turned into a society-wide citizen action. Not only have journalists come forward to show their solidarity with Southern Weekly, but the incident has spread to the Beijing News, where the staff collectively refused to publish Party propaganda. Further, grassroots activists and social elites have come together [to show support]. Scholars from the mainland, Taiwan, and Hong Kong have issued statements; plus, those who don’t usually get involved, like Confucian scholars and TV and movie stars, have used various methods to issue statements or express their own views.”
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Gao Wenqian（高文谦）is the Senior Policy Advisor and Editor-in-Chief of Chinese Publications at Human Rights in China. A former researcher at the Communist Party of China’s Central Research Office for Documentation, he immigrated to the United States in 1993. He is the author of Zhou Enlai: The Last Perfect Revolutionary.