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Working paper

Network Analysis of the Chinese Media on the Evidence from the Hong Kong Protest Movement

Bocharova A.
State information policy becomes especially important in times of political crises. The government has not only to solve the problem efficiently, but also preserve its positive image for the audience to restore order, retain its legitimacy and prevent citizens from any harmful collective actions. Media as the main link between the state and the citizens become, thus, one of the main means to solve this political crisis. In this study, the author takes the case of Hong Kong protests in summer-fall 2019 as the example of how state media work in order to resolve the crisis. By creating the network of Chinese media with the SNA method, we analyze how government controls the main information flows and what role local prodemocratic Hong Kong newspapers play in the information network of China. The results of the study show the decisive role of state media in creating the information agenda around Hong Kong protests. Moreover, there is close interconnectivity between Hong Kong media and government newspapers and between Hong Kong media and foreign sources of information, which makes local newspapers an important bridge between Eastern and mainland Chinese political views.