“The new China Daily has a cosmopolitan and sophisticated look to go with its rich content and its unique status as the country’s national English-language newspaper,” (China Daily) said. Monday’s paper featured a new masthead on a brighter looking front page with larger photos and sharper graphics intended to represent “the cutting edge of the newspaper industry.” The China Daily also promised a new take on content, with more breaking news online and in-depth investigation and analysis in print, and a doubling of the daily Beijing metro section from four pages to eight. The inaugural issue included some notable stories: A page-one exclusive interview with Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi on China’s place in global affairs, a long cover story discussing some of the weaknesses in China’s sports machine, as well as a metro feature on the availability of banned books in Beijing. The China Daily’s latest move may be a response to the competition it faces from the relatively new English edition of the Global Times, a tabloid published by the People’s Daily which was launched last April. While the Global Times’ editorial stance leans towards the nationalistic, the tone of the English version is less strident than its Chinese version, and the paper has been developing something of a reputation for fairly insightful stories that don’t simply hew to the Party line and discussing topics such as the 1989 Tiananmen Square crackdown and Internet censorship. China has been encouraging its media industry to consolidate and adopt a more market-driven approach that relies less on government funding. China’s foreign-language media serves an important role in the country’s global soft power push, a role that the China Daily appears to have taken to heart. “China Daily has set the goal of being a world-class newspaper commensurate with China’s global stature,” the paper said Monday.
Source: The Wall Street Journal