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Zhang Ziyi case an eye opener

Updated: 2013-12-24 07:16
( China Daily)

After 19 months' relentless efforts, actress Zhang Ziyi has won a libel lawsuit against an irresponsible US media outlet. Her perseverance should teach Chinese people, enterprises and organizations to use legal weapons to safeguard their legal rights against the Western media's slanders, says an article on xinhuanet. com Excerpts:

Last year, Zhang Ziyi had commissioned a team of lawyers to sue a US-based website for publishing a "sexual scandal" related to her. On Dec 14, after 19 months of legal battle, the website publicly apologized to Zhang for its mistake.

Zhang's victory in the libel lawsuit is not just entertainment news, but also a lesson for irresponsible American media outlets. Objectivity is the foundation of journalism. The media should never base their reports on unreliable sources, speculate on facts or cook up "scoops", because such activities will only fuel the rumor machines. They will also undermine the media's credibility and drag them to court.

In recent years, many US media outlets, including the website mentioned above, have been trying to cook up news, with "Zhang Ziyi's sexual scandal" being one example. Some US media outlets have been in the habit of reading China's policies and the problems it faces according to their own understanding without bothering to know the truth. Sometimes they even deliberately distort sensitive issues to mislead international public opinion in order to fulfill their political goals.

The Chinese people and government have always responded to distorted foreign news reports but seldom have they sued biased Western media outlets in court. That Zhang Ziyi won the libel lawsuit after a difficult court battle is something to be applauded, especially because it concerns the protection of an individual's rights. The actress' legal battle should encourage Chinese individuals and enterprises to use legal means to fight the libelous attacks of the Western media.


(China Daily 12/24/2013 page9)