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Hong Kong profile - Media

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Hong Kong is home to many of Asia's biggest media players. The territory has one of the world's largest film industries and is a major centre for broadcasting and publishing.

It has kept its editorially-dynamic media, in contrast to the rest of China where official control over broadcasting is pervasive. Freedom of speech and of the press are enshrined in the Basic Law, Hong Kong's mini-constitution.

However, "Beijing's baleful influence has led to a decline in press freedom", Reporters Without Borders (RSF) said in its 2019 assessment. It said more than half of Hong Kong's media owners are also members of political bodies on the mainland.

Amid large-scale protests in 2019 against an extradition bill, "police and pro-Beijing mobs attacked journalists on numerous occasions", RSF said.

Free-to-air TV is dominated by private station Television Broadcasts (TVB). Public Radio Television Hong Kong (RTHK) was established under British rule in 1928 and operates as a government department.

There are more than a dozen free-to-air TV channels, and hundreds more networks are available via multichannel and pay-TV platforms. International and pan-Asian broadcasters are based in Hong Kong.

BBC World Service is carried overnight by RTHK's Radio 4 FM network. RTHK ended a 24-hour relay in 2017 to make way for a Chinese state radio network.

Multitude of papers

Hong Kong has long been a major centre for print journalism. Local papers are known for their political leanings, with most being either pro-Beijing or pro-democracy.

There are scores of Chinese-language dailies and a handful of English-language titles.

E-commerce giant Alibaba owns the prominent English-language South China Morning Post.

There are no reports of widespread online censorship or filtering and top international social media are in common use.

News websites are increasingly used as a way to access independent news. Content on sites including Hong Kong 01, Hong Kong Free Press and Stand News is censored in mainland China.

Chinese platforms WeChat and Sina Weibo are popular, but not as much as WhatsApp and Facebook.

The press/news websites

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image captionNearly three quarters of Hong Kong residents are internet users
  • South China Morning Post - English-language daily
  • The Standard - business-oriented English-language daily
  • Ming Pao - influential daily
  • Tung Fang Jih Pao (Oriental Daily) - widely-read daily
  • Ping Kuo Jih Pao (Apple Daily) - widely-read daily
  • Ta Kung Pao and Wen Wei Po - managed from Beijing, follow Communist Party line
  • Wall Street Journal - Chinese edition
  • HK01 - news site, in Chinese
  • Hong Kong Free Press - news site, in English
  • Radio-TV Hong Kong (RTHK) - government-funded, operates seven networks in English, Cantonese, Mandarin
  • Commercial Radio - operates CR1, CR2 networks in Cantonese and mediumwave (AM) station AM 864
  • Metro Broadcast - operates Metro Info, Metro Finance and English-language Metro Plus