【Article by College of Social Sciences】
On 6th Dec 2022, the College of Social Science provided the talk in room 270104, North-wing, General Building, National Chengchi University, under the theme, viewpoint of foreign media reporters.
Tsou Tzung-Han, Chief of Deutsche Welle’s Taipei Office, gave the talk to NCCU students who were interested and registered beforehand. Even though this talk was in English, the speaker also talked in Mandarin.
Tsou gave the background of Deutsche Welle. He said, “Deutsche Welle is a state-owned international broadcast funded by the German taxpayer”.
“Deutsch Welle was founded in 1953 or after the end of World War second, with the model of British Broadcast Corporation (BBC)”, Tsou said
Tsou explained to the audience what is different between state and independent media. He showed the comparison between Deutsche Welle and Xinhua, the mouthpiece of the Chinese government.
One of the samples was the black and white on the Xinhua web page shown during the talks. The webpage was turned black and white to commemorate Jiang Zemin (江澤民), former president of the People’s Republic of China. Turning page colour to honour the former leader, he said, “in a democratic country, we do not do this”.
Most of the news reports in Deutsch Welle concern the issues in mainland China. Tsou explained that the main focus is on mainland China because there is no press freedom.
Tsou pointed out that the independent press agency abided by freedom of expression. “Deutsche Welle has many languages on the website, and we have a lot of viewers who use VPN (Virtual Private Network) to view us (in Chinese).”
However, Tsou said Deutsche Welle focuses more on English because the German press agency wants to catch the world’s audiences.
The Deutsche Welle TV host also gave another sample of a government-owned news agency. “The Qatari government funds Aljazeera. It is autocratic, not democratic.” He said.
Tsou raised the concept of “Regionalization”, or the combination of the global aspect and the local’s viewpoint. He showed the video clip of him and his foreign coworker interviewing Joseph Wu, Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
The speaker said that his role was to emphasize the words from the interviewee for Taiwanese and Chinese audiences. Meanwhile, his coworker was to make sure that the interviewee’s words would meet the international audience.
For the difference between state and independent media, the audience asked the speaker about the opinion of Taiwanese state and independent media. He hinted that “State media or propaganda media means you are losing your voice”.
“Free information should be unbiased”, Tsou Tzung-Han concluded.
Tsou Tzung-Han is an alumnus of the Master’s program in Communication College of Communication, National Chengchi University. He has been working for Deutsche Welle for four years and now as the Chief of Taipei Office. He was a journalist and a TV host on Taiwanese Television Channels, Formosa TV and UDN TV.