Arab Today, arab today jack mas south china morning post takeover
Last Updated : GMT 03:52:17
Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today

A double-edged sword

Jack Ma's South China Morning Post takeover

Arab Today, arab today

Arab Today, arab today Jack Ma's South China Morning Post takeover

South China Morning Post
Hong Kong - Arab Today

Chinese Internet tycoon Jack Ma's mooted buyout of Hong Kong's struggling South China Morning Post could see the paper prosper from his Midas touch, analysts say, but also further erode its independence and with it the city's press freedoms.

The once globally renowned paper was founded in 1903 and has long given international readers an insider's perspective on Hong Kong and the mainland, providing a window on events from the Mao era to China's 1980s economic awakening and the 1997 handover.

But profits and sales have evaporated, hit by an industry-wide plunge in advertising revenue and unable to deal with the transition to the digital age.

Readers' trust has also dipped as a more pro-Beijing editorial policy has not gone unnoticed in a city that saw tens of thousands take to the streets last year to protest against mainland interference.

Ma, the founder of Chinese e-commerce behemoth Alibaba, is in talks to buy a stake in the paper's publisher, a source familiar with the potential deal told AFP, with discussions reported to be at an advanced stage.

"I think it's a smart move for Jack Ma," said financial analyst Jackson Wong.
He has tons of cash and he knows how to run a business in China very well."

Links with Alibaba would also give the paper a necessary boost in terms of its online platform, added Wong, associate director for Simsen Financial Group.

Ma founded Alibaba in 1999 and under his stewardship it has become China's biggest e-commerce company, operating consumer-to-consumer platform Taobao, which is estimated to hold more than 90 percent of the mainland market.

It has also branched out, buying ChinaVision Media in 2014 and renaming it Alibaba Pictures, today China's biggest film company, which produced this year's blockbuster "Mission: Impossible -- Rogue Nation".

And it is developing a video and TV streaming service similar to Netflix.
Ma is now looking to move into traditional news, joining the likes of fellow Internet tycoon and Amazon founder Jeff Bezos who bought the Washington Post in 2013.

But there are concerns that under Ma's ownership, the paper's editorial independence will continue to be stripped away -- a process that observers say begun under current owner Malaysian billionaire Robert Kuok.

"For all readers of the South China Morning Post the paper has become progressively pro-Beijing, I think this trend will continue," said Willy Lam of the Chinese University of Hong Kong's Centre for China Studies, a former China editor at the paper.

"Ma has very close ties with the government so I'm sure he doesn't want any so-called embarrassing or offensive articles to appear in the Morning Post after he has taken over," Lam said.

"He... has been a major beneficiary of the Chinese system, so it is logical to expect... that he would not want any criticism of the syste
- A 'loss' for Hong Kong -

The paper's stance had become increasingly pro-Beijing since Kuok, who is heavily invested in China, bought it from media tycoon Rupert Murdoch in 1993.

"I was kicked out because Robert Kuok was very unhappy with what he considered to be (my) excessively critical view on Chinese politics," said Lam, who edited the paper's China section from 1989 until he was dismissed in 2000.

According to Lam, many major Hong Kong-based media companies are increasingly influenced by Chinese shareholders as Beijing seeks to push its authority in the semi-autonomous city.

"For the past several years, they have gradually but relentlessly boosted control over Hong Kong media," he said.

The paper's outgoing editor-in-chief Wang Xiangwei was also accused of muzzling the newspaper to appease Beijing, amid increasing fears Hong Kong is losing its cherished freedoms.

But, as Lam warns, the paper's value remains routed in its journalism, which will be lost if its editorial independence is diminished.

"(Ma) has to walk a fine line, if either the Post or any other major media becomes a propaganda sheet then its value is lost."

Media analyst To Yiu-ming described the Post's pro-Beijing slide and now the potential sale of the paper to Ma as a loss for Hong Kong.

"I think it's lost a channel for expression of liberal news. We've lost a platform for professional journalists to honour their duties," said To, an assistant professor at Hong Kong Baptist University's journalism school.

"It's also a loss for (the) Hong Kong people."
Source: AFP

Name *

E-mail *

Comment Title*

Comment *

: Characters Left

Mandatory *

Terms of use

Publishing Terms: Not to offend the author, or to persons or sanctities or attacking religions or divine self. And stay away from sectarian and racial incitement and insults.

I agree with the Terms of Use

Security Code*

Arab Today, arab today jack mas south china morning post takeover Arab Today, arab today jack mas south china morning post takeover

 



Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today Fadi explains secrets of  Nancy Ajram's newlook

GMT 18:23 2017 Friday ,24 February

Fadi explains secrets of  Nancy Ajram's newlook
Arab Today, arab today Tourist guide explains types of tourism

GMT 18:28 2017 Saturday ,25 February

Tourist guide explains types of tourism
Arab Today, arab today Expresses Algerian history by woody figures

GMT 13:26 2017 Friday ,24 February

Expresses Algerian history by woody figures
Arab Today, arab today Iran complying with nuclear deal

GMT 07:14 2017 Saturday ,25 February

Iran complying with nuclear deal
Arab Today, arab today Ayat Abaza says state TV presented major stars

GMT 03:52 2017 Sunday ,26 February

Ayat Abaza says state TV presented major stars

GMT 17:18 2017 Wednesday ,15 February

Egyptian TV host Lubna Assal optimistic about future

GMT 06:59 2017 Wednesday ,15 February

Ranim Abdeen prefers program serving people

GMT 09:02 2017 Monday ,13 February

El-Boni: Press photo requires credibility

GMT 09:17 2017 Saturday ,11 February

Altice to launch US cable news channel

GMT 23:56 2017 Thursday ,09 February

Salama considers running Press Syndicate

GMT 06:20 2017 Thursday ,09 February

Moroccan journalist stresses AU-return benefits

GMT 05:29 2017 Wednesday ,08 February

Al-Akos praises his experience with Baraem channel
View News in Arabic - Media: وسائل الإعلام أخبار
Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today Reading therapy relieves mental disorders

GMT 15:39 2017 Friday ,24 February

Reading therapy relieves mental disorders
Arab Today, arab today UK appoints 1st Scotland Yard chief in 188 years

GMT 05:14 2017 Thursday ,23 February

UK appoints 1st Scotland Yard chief in 188 years
Arab Today, arab today Penguins in the age of dinos

GMT 11:44 2017 Saturday ,25 February

Penguins in the age of dinos
Arab Today, arab today Pluto's unruly moons

GMT 06:31 2015 Thursday ,04 June

Pluto's unruly moons
Arab Today, arab today 'Constructive' Vauxhall talk with union

GMT 08:54 2017 Saturday ,25 February

'Constructive' Vauxhall talk with union
Arab Today, arab today Tesla back into red but revenue grows

GMT 07:27 2017 Thursday ,23 February

Tesla back into red but revenue grows
Arab Today, arab today Actress Lobna Abdel Aziz proud of her career

GMT 06:08 2017 Thursday ,23 February

Actress Lobna Abdel Aziz proud of her career
Arab Today, arab today Ex-yoga missionary unleashes rage

GMT 12:16 2017 Thursday ,23 February

Ex-yoga missionary unleashes rage

GMT 07:36 2017 Wednesday ,22 February

Wafaa Amer is happy for Sherihan’s return

GMT 12:35 2017 Tuesday ,21 February

63-Year-Old Woman Delivers Baby

GMT 22:42 2017 Thursday ,23 February

Nasima Gamei revives heritage in jewelries

GMT 10:28 2017 Wednesday ,22 February

Milan laughs while Rome cries

GMT 20:33 2017 Friday ,17 February

To release new antiques collection

GMT 10:20 2017 Thursday ,23 February

Brazil's top diplomat resigns

GMT 11:54 2017 Thursday ,23 February

Saudis await visitors but will they come?

GMT 13:12 2015 Saturday ,09 May

Sheikh Sultan opens Sharjah Centre

GMT 20:02 2017 Tuesday ,21 February

Nohan Seyam designs beautiful accessories
Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today
 
 Arab Today Facebook,arab today facebook  Arab Today Twitter,arab today twitter Arab Today Rss,arab today rss  Arab Today Youtube,arab today youtube  Arab Today Youtube,arab today youtube
arabstoday arabstoday arabstoday arabstoday
arabstoday arabstoday arabstoday
arabstoday
بناية النخيل - رأس النبع _ خلف السفارة الفرنسية _بيروت - لبنان
arabstoday, Arabstoday, Arabstoday