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Stand News

Hong Kong news media

Stand News
Type of site
News
Available inTraditional Chinese
Dissolved29 December 2021; 26 days ago (2021-12-29)
Headquarters
Hong Kong
OwnerBest Pencil (Hong Kong) Ltd.
URLthestandnews.com
CommercialNo
RegistrationNone
Launched30 December 2014; 7 years ago (2014-12-30)
Current statusDefunct
Stand News
Traditional Chinese立場新聞
Simplified Chinese立场新闻

Stand News (Chinese: 立場新聞) was a free non-profit online news website based in Hong Kong from 2014 to 2021. Founded in December 2014, it was the successor of House News. It primarily focused on social and political issues in Hong Kong, and generally took a pro-democracy editorial position.

Stand News was ranked highest in credibility among online news media in Hong Kong in two public opinion surveys conducted by the Chinese University of Hong Kong in 2016 and 2019.[1][2]

On 29 December 2021, amid the backdrop of increasing government suppression of news media following the 2020 enactment of the Hong Kong national security law, Stand News was raided by the Hong Kong Police Force, who arrested senior staff and froze the company's assets. As a result, similar to Apple Daily earlier the same year, Stand News was forced to dismiss its staff and cease operations.[3]

Background

Stand News was founded after the closure of House News in July 2014. Instead of running the website as a limited company like House News, the owner company of the website, Best Pencil (Hong Kong) Limited, is legally managed by a trust company, while prohibiting any transfer of shares.[4]

Following the forced closure of Apple Daily on 24 June 2021, the organisation announced precautionary measures, citing "security concerns". While it vowed to continue publishing, it said that it would pre-emptively take off line all non-news items, such as commentaries and op-eds. Stating that giving their current finances would allow operations to continue for 9 to 12 months, they would cease to accept sponsorships or subscriptions to prevent money "going to waste". Six of the board's eight members resigned."[5] [6]

The organisation also participated in the Pandora Papers leaks in October 2021.[7]

Incidents

The moment that Gwyneth Ho, a female journalist of Stand News, was attacked[8] in Yuen Long.

Legal dispute with former Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying

On 24 August 2018, former Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying filed for defamation against university professor Chung Kim-wah and Stand News in the High Court, alleging that an article in the website falsely associated Leung with the triads.[9][10] The article had reported a dinner between Leung's aides and alleged triad members. Chung Kim-wah refused to retract the article, while Stand News chief editor Chung Pui-kuen stated that he did not believe that the article defamed Leung, and extended Leung the right to reply.[11]

Incidents during the 2019 Hong Kong protests

During the Yuen Long attack on 21 July 2019, Stand News reporter Gwyneth Ho was attacked by triad members while live-streaming the attack. When the assailants were attacking commuters in the train station, some of them turned on Ho, who was knocked over and hit by sticks and wooden batons while she continued filming.[12] Ho was taken to the hospital, where she received treatment for her injuries and was given stitches.[13]

On 20 December 2019, while he was reporting a shooting incident at Jade Plaza in Tai Po, a Stand News reporter's hands and mobile phone were clubbed repeatedly by a policeman; other reporters were pepper sprayed. The Hong Kong Journalists Association condemned the attack and intentional provocation by the Hong Kong Police.[14][15] Senior journalist Yau Ching-Yuen alleged that the police might have known that the victim was working for the Stand News and thus intentionally targeted the reporter.[16]

On 24 December 2019, a reporter of Stand News was attacked by the police using pepper spray. The reporter, armed with recording equipment, was covering a conflict between the police and civilians in Mong Kok at the time.[17]

Government suppression and closure

Ronson Chan live-streamed the police raid on his home on the Stand News Facebook page.

In 2021, non-pro-government Hong Kong news media were subject to increasing government suppression, such as the forced closure of Apple Daily in June and the prosecution of staff there. As a result, Stand News wrote that "speech crimes" had arrived in Hong Kong, and removed commentary pieces from its website. It also stopped accepting monthly donations from readers so as to avoid wasting donors' funds in the event that Stand News was suppressed in a similar manner as Apple Daily.[18][19][20]

Stand News was targeted later that year. On 3 December 2021, Secretary for Security Chris Tang accused the outlet of bias, and of smearing Hong Kong's "smart prison" initiative. On the morning of 29 December, Stand News was raided by over 200 officers of the Hong Kong Police Force. Three men and three women were arrested and accused of conspiring to publish seditious material. Ronson Chan, a Stand News editor and chair of the Hong Kong Journalists Association, was also held for questioning by national security officers, and his home was raided;[19][20] two former board members – former legislator Margaret Ng and pop icon Denise Ho were among those arrested.[21]

Later the same day, Stand News announced on social media that it would cease publication and dismiss its employees as the company's assets were frozen by the police.[3][22] Its website was promptly replaced by a short farewell letter. The company's Facebook and Twitter pages were deleted, and all content on its YouTube account was removed. The Stand News's UK bureau announced it would also shut down, with bureau chief Yeung Tin-shui resigning.[23]

By the end of its life, their Facebook fans page had more than 1.7 million likes.[24]

Editors-in-Chief

  1. Chung Pui-kuen[25]
  2. Yu Ka-fai[25]
  3. Patrick Lam; interim[26]

Awards

See also

References

  1. ^ 蘇鑰機 (2019-11-28). "蘇鑰機:香港傳媒公信力:低處未必最低". Ming Pao (in Chinese (Hong Kong)). Archived from the original on 2019-11-28. Retrieved 2019-11-28.
  2. ^ Centre for Communication and Public Opinion Survey (2019). "Tracking Research: Public Evaluation on Media Credibility – Survey Results" (PDF). The Chinese University of Hong Kong. Archived (PDF) from the original on 2020-05-01. Retrieved 2020-08-18.
  3. ^ a b "BREAKING: Stand News closes, website inaccessible following arrests and police raid; Chief Sec. slams 'evil elements'". Hong Kong Free Press. 2021-12-29. Archived from the original on 2022-01-02. Retrieved 2021-12-29.
  4. ^ Lam, Apple (2014-12-18). "House News founder Tony Tsoi forms new company Best Pencil". Marketing Interactive. Archived from the original on 2019-07-27. Retrieved 2019-07-27.
  5. ^ "立場新聞-公告". Archived from the original on 2021-06-27. Retrieved 2021-06-27.
  6. ^ "Hong Kong police arrest senior Apple Daily journalist at airport". the Guardian. 2021-06-28. Archived from the original on 2022-01-01. Retrieved 2021-06-28.
  7. ^ Shiel, Fergus (2021-10-04). "About the Pandora Papers". ICIJ. Archived from the original on 2021-12-29. Retrieved 2021-10-06.
  8. ^ Hui, Mary. "The journalist who livestreamed the Hong Kong protests' darkest moment is now a dissident behind bars". Quartz. Archived from the original on 2021-12-29. Retrieved 2021-12-29.
  9. ^ Chan, Holmes (2018-08-24). "Ex-leader CY Leung sues Stand News and university professor for defamation". Hong Kong Free Press. Archived from the original on 2019-07-27. Retrieved 2019-07-27.
  10. ^ Cheng, Kris (2018-08-16). "Ex-chief exec. CY Leung sends legal letters demanding Stand News and scholar retract article". Hong Kong Free Press. Archived from the original on 2019-07-27. Retrieved 2019-07-27.
  11. ^ "CY Leung files libel suit against professor and online news portal". South China Morning Post. 2018-08-24. Archived from the original on 2019-07-27. Retrieved 2019-07-27.
  12. ^ "Hong Kong journalist live streams being attacked at train station". CNA. Archived from the original on 2019-07-27. Retrieved 2019-07-27.
  13. ^ "元朗惡煞群毆記者市民 《立場》記者雙手、右肩、背部受傷 需留院觀察 | 立場報道" [Yuen Long gang beats up reporters and citizens, "Stand News" reporter's hands, right shoulder and back injured, must stay in hospital for observation]. Stand News (in Chinese). Hong Kong. 2019-07-22. Archived from the original on 2019-07-21. Retrieved 2019-07-27.
  14. ^ "記協批警方敲打《立場》記者手部及手機 予以強烈譴責" (in zh-Hant-HK). Yahoo! News. Archived from the original on 2019-12-29. Retrieved 2019-12-29.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: unrecognized language (link)
  15. ^ "警員用警棍連打《立場》記者手機 江永祥:敲". post852.com (in Chinese (Hong Kong)). 2019-12-23. Archived from the original on 2019-12-29. Retrieved 2019-12-29.
  16. ^ "《立場》記者被警棍打手 游清源質疑警方針對|website=www.post852.com". 852郵報 (in Chinese (Hong Kong)). 2019-12-23. Archived from the original on 2019-12-29. Retrieved 2019-12-29.
  17. ^ "【不平安夜】催淚煙彌漫、汽油彈再現、黑衣男墮樓、百人和你 Shop 被捕 | 立場報道". Stand News (in Chinese). Hong Kong. Archived from the original on 2019-12-25. Retrieved 2019-12-25.
  18. ^ "Stand News articles removed, directors resign". RTHK. 2021-06-27. Archived from the original on 2021-12-29. Retrieved 2021-12-29.
  19. ^ a b "Over 200 Hong Kong national security police raid Stand News newsroom, 6 arrested inc. acting editor". Hong Kong Free Press. 2021-12-29. Archived from the original on 2022-01-02. Retrieved 2021-12-29.
  20. ^ a b c Mahtani, Shibani (2021-12-28). "Hong Kong police arrest six from independent news outlet, intensifying crackdown on the press". The Washington Post. Archived from the original on 2021-12-29. Retrieved 2021-12-29.
  21. ^ "Hong Kong media outlet Stand News to close after police raid". the Guardian. 2021-12-29. Archived from the original on 2021-12-29. Retrieved 2021-12-29.
  22. ^ "One of Hong Kong's last pro-democracy news sites, Stand News, closes after police raid and arrests". www.cbsnews.com. Archived from the original on 2021-12-29. Retrieved 2021-12-29.
  23. ^ "Hong Kong's Stand News deletes website and wipes social media; ex-staff to appear in court as watchdogs decry raid". Hong Kong Free Press. 2021-12-30. Archived from the original on 2022-01-02. Retrieved 2021-12-30.
  24. ^ "【立場新聞】《蘋果》倒下後最大自由聲音 屢受高官炮轟 《立場》高壓下大作連連". Radio Free Asia. Archived from the original on 2021-12-31. Retrieved 2021-12-31.
  25. ^ a b Lau, Chris (2021-12-30). "'Yellow' outlet or trailblazer? The rise and fall of Hong Kong's Stand News". ABS CBN News. Archived from the original on 2021-12-31. Retrieved 2021-12-31.
  26. ^ "Hong Kong police charge two former Stand News editors with sedition after raid shuts down outlet". Australian Broadcasting Corporation. 2021-12-30. Archived from the original on 2021-12-31. Retrieved 2021-12-31.
  27. ^ a b c d "24th Human Rights Press Awards (2020) Winners". Human Rights Press Awards. 2020-05-04. Archived from the original on 2021-10-19. Retrieved 2021-12-31.

External links