As part of a $700,000 advertising deal with the Chinese state-run media outlet China Daily, Time Magazine published numerous articles praising the Chinese Communist Party’s latest five year plan, and promoting the controversial drone manufacturer that used its products to surveil Uyghurs in Xinjiang, the Washington Free Beacon reports.
The advertising campaign began late last year, with Time now having published 75 articles from the outlet. Time does disclose the fact that it is a paid partnership, but doesn’t disclose that the media outlet is state-sponsored.
According to the Free Beacon, "The Justice Department requires China Daily to disclose its media activities under the Foreign Agents Registration Act due to its affiliation with the People’s Republic of China."
China Daily has spend millions of dollars for advertising and printing in American outlets over the last 6 months to outlets including Time, the Los Angeles Times, Chicago Tribune, and Foreign Policy magazine.
With the introduction of Chinese Communist Party media outlets into American news, the Jamestown Foundation, a pro-democracy think tank, has questioned whether the advertising partnerships would effect how American news outlets report on negative coverage of China.
The Free Beacon states that "while most of the China Daily content is not political in nature, some of the articles appear to be thinly veiled attempts to portray the Chinese government and companies in a positive light."
One of the China Daily articles published by Time focuses on the controversial drone manufacturer DJI, with an article outlining the drone’s usage in farming being published after the Trump administration blacklisted the company for concerns over whether Chinese intelligence could use the drones to collect data on American citizens. The Chinese government allegedly used these drones to surveil Uyghur muslins in Xinjiang.
The article states that 40,000 of the drones were sold for agricultural work over the last year, with DJI stating that the company is "helping farmers improve efficiency and increase the use of intelligent agricultural equipment."
The first China Daily article published by Time was an article praising the CCP’s new five-year plan, while blaming the United States for "escalating" tensions with China after they threatened to ban the popular apps WeChat and TikTok over concerns with associations to Chinese intelligence.
Many articles published from China Daily called for closer cooperation between the US and China, praised China, or were criticizing the US government.
The Wall Street Journal was publishing articles from China Daily, including an interview with the brother of former president George W. Bush, Neil Bush, in which he slammed Trump for highjacking the Republican Party and criticized US tariffs on China.
Unlike Time's though, the Wall Street Journal published that China Daily is state-run media. The Wall Street Journal, as well as the New York Times, and the Washington Post all cut their partnerships with China Daily last year.
According to the Free Beacon, "The New York Times said that it ended the partnership due to concerns about working with state-run media outlets."
Time reportedly averages around $9,300 per article from China Daily. It also secured the deal just as other outlets were leaving their deals over concerns.