27 April 2018
China's state news agency has accused Japan's TBS of using a TV show (inset) to propagate negative stereotypes about China and its people. Photos: Bloomberg,
China's state news agency has accused Japan's TBS of using a TV show (inset) to propagate negative stereotypes about China and its people. Photos: Bloomberg,

China slams Japanese broadcaster over ‘offensive’ TV show

China’s top state news agency, Xinhua, has lashed out at Japanese broadcaster TBS over a television program that cast China and its people in a bad light.

An entertainment show aired by TBS in Japan last week was nothing but a cheap tactic aimed at boosting the station’s ratings through misleading content, Xinhua said.

It accused the broadcaster of propagating negative stereotypes about Chinese people and the purported ills plaguing Chinese society.

Referring to a show aired by TBS on May 23, Xinhua said the program has caused much anger among Chinese people living in Japan as well as the online community in China.

In the TV show, TBS had invited 50 Chinese residents in Japan as guests for a discussion on problems such as food safety and air pollution in China and the bad behavior of Chinese people.

According to footage aired by the station, 35 of the 50 invited Chinese guests said they will definitely avoid some food products from China as the items may not be safe.

As for air pollution, 31 guests said China should be apologetic as polluted air from the country is crossing the sea and reaching Japan, reported.

But others argued that it is unfair to blame China, given the fact that many pollution-creating factories in China were set up by companies from developed countries.

The Japanese guests on the program then criticized Chinese residents in Japan for “uncivilized” behavior, accusing them of acts such as using neighbors’ bicycles without asking, eating fruit at supermarkets before they pay for the items, and smoking indiscriminately in public places.

Some Chinese guests sought to defend their nationals, saying problems may sometimes arise due to cultural differences and peculiar situations.

Meanwhile, they also claimed that the so-called “bakugai”, a Japanese word which roughly translates into “explosive buying”, of Chinese tourists is helping support the Japanese economy.

Despite the defense by some people, it was the anti-Chinese sentiments that got a bigger play overall during the show, according to Xinhua. 

Judgments were made based on limited understanding of China and its people, it said, adding that it was not the first time that the Japanese media resorted to China-bashing in order to draw eyeballs.

The Chinese guests who participated in the show complained later that they felt they were used by the show’s producers and that the discussion seemed to have been pre-scripted, Xinhua said.

The news agency called on Chinese residents in Japan to jointly lodge protests against Japanese media outlets that carry offensive reports on China and its people.

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