Skip to content


Harry Cassin
Publisher and Editor

Andy Spalding
Senior Editor

Jessica Tillipman
Senior Editor

Bill Steinman
Senior Editor

Richard L. Cassin
Editor at Large

Elizabeth K. Spahn
Editor Emeritus

Cody Worthington
Contributing Editor

Julie DiMauro
Contributing Editor

Thomas Fox
Contributing Editor

Marc Alain Bohn
Contributing Editor

Bill Waite
Contributing Editor

Russell A. Stamets
Contributing Editor

Richard Bistrong
Contributing Editor

Eric Carlson
Contributing Editor

Leading China media group accused of running extortion and protection racket

Over 30 people from prominent media group 21st Century Media Co. have been investigated for alleged extortion by its journalists in exchange for favorable coverage, Shanghai police said.

Those being investigated work for the group’s influential newspapers 21st Century Business Herald (21CBH), Money weekly and online news portal

Shen Hao (pictured) and Chen Dongyang, the publisher and general manager of 21CBH, have been detained by police along with the group’s editors, marketing executives and other publishers.

Shen and several other detainees have reportedly confessed to extortion and blackmail.

The case came to light in early September when eight people from the and two public relations firms were accused of conspiring to extort money from companies in exchange for positive stories. Companies refusing to pay were told they would be attacked by negative reports. Over 200 companies were blackmailed or forced to advertise on the news portal.

“I have set very high revenue targets for editors, encouraging them to seek clients through blackmailing,” Shen told Xinhua News. “I organized, supported, coordinated and participated in the extortion; I must bear a big responsibility.”

Shen said he was aware that extortion is an economic crime but it is a common act among media companies, and he deeply regretted for his unlawful behavior.

Sources: Xinhua News, Reuters, Beijing News (新京报)


Hui Zhi is the Senior Manager for Content with the China Compliance Digest, where a version of this post first appeared.

Share this post


Comments are closed for this article!