CCTV: Me no speakey da englishy
I applied for a job with CCTV 9 just for a laugh since they are currently recruiting. If you don’t know what CCTV 9 it is Chinese State TV’s English language station and International News channel. The station is pretty awful, most presenters struggle with English, and a weird fascination with covering obscure African news stories. Anyway have a look at an excerpt of my application letter, with the pic I included. No surprises I have as of yet to receive a reply.
CCTV English Channel gives a very poor view of China, its news outlook is boring, largely irrelevant and is barely commented on by anyone this side of the Milky Way.
Consider this. On Twitter, the newest and increasingly most popular social media site, CCTV news has 19,400 fans, and one could hazard a good guess that most of those fans were purchased, since there doesn’t seem to be a whole lot of interaction on the page.Russia Today, on the other hand, has over 650,000 Twitter fans, and it’s well known hosts include Max Kieser (98K), George Galloway (175k) Abbey Martin (69k) and Larry King (2.48million). Can’t find any stats for Yang Rui or Tan Wei the big two of CCTV. I doubt Yang Rui would have the wherewithal or ability to interact with native English speakers so it’s just as well he is hidden from cyberspace, plus he is a bigoted moron. Hates the Laowai yet sends his child to be educated in the decadent west, so typical of China’s elite!
When you see what’s also on offer from Press TV, Al Jazeera, BBC, and Vice, CCTV is losing out big time. Especially when China and Chinese stories are so hot and popular with the west at the moment. But if you watch CCTV you might catch a show of some worker hitting a train track with a hammer, how Sudan is doing, or the very important issue of how Chinese Modern Cinema is trying to get into the western market (seen last week) All fine but the viewer might be more interested in the Malaysian missing flight fiasco, recent terror on the streets of China, and the views of the youth of the country. All covered but not nowhere as much as should be. Turn on CCTV and it’s a lucky pick and mix of news, could be about vegetable growing in Xian or the lack of rain in Baotou, but it won’t be interesting that’s for sure. It’s frustrating to watch because CCTV should be offering much more than this!
I also haven’t mentioned the awful pronunciation of English by the majority of the presenters, but I will park that as that’s more to do with political appointees than anything else no doubt.
It’s not all bad news. James Chau is a top reporter. Hopefully he can be the start of something new in CCTV, but the station needs a lot more than one good reporter.
I have experience of China having lived and worked there for well over 5 years. I know how the people tick, what the country is like, how great the food is, and how interesting it can be to a western audience. CCTV needs a shakeup, needs to get out of its cosy atmosphere of just doing the bare minimum. The reality is if CCTV was a private enterprise without huge governmental help, the station wouldn’t last a year. It doesn’t offer the viewer, in China or in the West, anything of interest, and that’s a shame. And for advertisers it’s not making any blip on the internet or in the western media. It would die without government assistance.
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