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L’affaire Daisey

If you smell anything burning, it’s likely your Internet cable melting from the heat of all these rumors. Which is why at Sinica we turn our unforgiving gaze this week at unsubstantiated press, foreign and domestic, focusing first on reports of heightened police security in Beijing, midnight tank appearances, gunshots near the square, luxury car crashes, and even whispers of a coup d’etat. And more internationally, we can’t help but discuss This American Life’s recent retraction of a China-related story that was heavily fabricated: L’affaire Daisey.

Hosted by Kaiser Kuo and Jeremy Goldkorn, Sinica is proud to have Rob Schmitz on the show this week. Rob is of course the China correspondent for Marketplace who put two and two together and whose basic fact-checking caught out a number of lies and inconsistencies in the Mike Daisey monologue as covered by a slew of major American news outlets. Joining us for the dissection of what happened here are two other China experts: Mary Kay Magistad of Public Radio International’s The World and Tania Branigan of the Guardian, also known as the other founding member of Beijing’s new Azure-Winged Magpie Appreciation Society.

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