World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article
 

Shi Tao

Shi Tao
Born (1968-07-25) July 25, 1968
Yanchi County, Wuzhong, Ningxia
Nationality Chinese
Occupation journalist
Known for 2004 arrest and imprisonment
Awards CPJ International Press Freedom Award (2005)
Golden Pen of Freedom Award (2006)

Shi Tao (simplified Chinese: 师涛; traditional Chinese: 師濤; pinyin: Shī Tāo; born July 25, 1968) is a mainland Chinese journalist, writer and poet, who in 2005 was sentenced to imprisonment for 10 years for releasing a document of the Communist Party to an overseas Chinese democracy site.

Yahoo! China was later discovered to have facilitated his arrest by providing his personal details to the Chinese government. Yahoo! was subsequently rebuked by a panel of the U.S. Congress, settled a lawsuit by Shi's family out of court, and pledged to reform its practices.

Following Shi's arrest, he won two major international journalism awards: the International Press Freedom Award of the Committee to Protect Journalists, and the World Association of Newspapers' Golden Pen of Freedom Award.

As of September 5, 2013, Shi Tao was released from the prison. He received an 18-month reduction in sentencing. He had spent 8 years and 6 months in the prison. He is now living in Yingchuan, Ningxia with his mother. [1]

Contents

  • Background 1
  • Arrest and imprisonment 2
  • Yahoo!'s role 3
  • Awards and recognition 4
  • See also 5
  • References 6

Background

Shi Tao was born in Yanchi County, Wuzhong, Ningxia in China in 1968.[2] According to Liu Xiaobo, Shi became active in the democracy movement in 1989 around the time of the Tiananmen Square protests.[3] In July 1991, he received a degree from Shanghai's East China Normal University. He married the following year.[2]

Prior to his arrest, Shi was an editor at Dangdai Shang Bao ("Contemporary Trade News"), a newspaper in Changsha, in Hunan Province.[4]

Arrest and imprisonment

On April 20, 2004, Shi received a document from Communist Party authorities which instructed journalists not to report on the upcoming fifteenth anniversary of the "June 4th event", the Tiananmen Square massacre.[2] The document warned of infiltration and sabotage by foreigners and Falun Gong, and stated that media members must "correctly direct public opinion" and to "never release any opinions that are inconsistent with central policies".[5] Shi used an Yahoo! Mail account to send an anonymous post to Chinese-language website based in New York that described the communication.[6]

At the request of the Chinese government, Yahoo! provided records confirming that Shi's account had sent the e-mail.[6] Shi was unofficially detained on 24 November 2004,[5] and on December 14, he was officially arrested under state security laws on a charge of revealing state secrets.[6][7] During Shi's trial, his lawyer contended that his punishment should be light as the disclosure of the information had not caused great harm to China.[8] In June, he was sentenced to ten years' imprisonment.[6]

Shi's appeal to the Hunan Province High People's Court was rejected without a hearing. Shi's mother Gao Qinsheng filed a request for a review of the appeal on his behalf in August 2005.[7] The appeal was unsuccessful, and Shi was meanwhile sent to Chishan Prison and assigned to forced labor. He began to suffer from respiratory problems, and in April 2006, also developed an ulcer and heart problems. In June 2007, he was given a medical transfer to Deshan Prison, where he worked in the machinery plant, and his health reportedly improved.[2] According to Amnesty International, Shi's mother, brother and uncle were also harassed following his arrest, and his wife was repeatedly interrogated and pressured to divorce him, which she eventually did.[9]

Shi's imprisonment was protested by several international NGOs. Amnesty International designated him a prisoner of conscience and called for his immediate release.[5] The Congressional-Executive Commission on China describes him as a political prisoner.[10] Reporters Without Borders launched a petition calling for his release,[11] while the Committee to Protect Journalists described itself as "outraged" by the arrest.[12] Human Rights Watch called him an imprisoned "human rights defender" and campaigned for his release.[13]

Yahoo!'s role

The incident sparked a controversy about the business practices of Yahoo!, the Hong Kong arm of which provided technical information connecting the message and email account with Shi Tao's computer. Yahoo! was criticized by Reporters Without Borders for acting as a "police informant".[14] Yahoo! was first called to testify about the incident to the House Foreign Affairs Committee of the United States Congress in 2006.[15]

In August 2007, Congress began an investigation into Yahoo!'s handling of the case,[15] with Yahoo! co-founder

  1. ^ 中国人权 Biweekly, Sept. 6, 2013
  2. ^ a b c d e "Shi Tao". English PEN. Archived from the original on October 7, 2012. Retrieved October 7, 2012. 
  3. ^ Liu Xiaobo (October 7, 2005). "Liu Xiaobo's letter to Yahoo!". Human Rights Watch. Archived from the original on October 7, 2012. Retrieved October 7, 2012. 
  4. ^ a b "IPFA 2005 - Shi Tao". Committee to Protect Journalists. Archived from the original on October 15, 2012. Retrieved January 21, 2007. 
  5. ^ a b c "China: Legacy of the Beijing Olympics: Free Shi Tao: China's choice, your voice". Amnesty International. February 1, 2008. Archived from the original on 15 October 2012. Retrieved 15 October 2012. 
  6. ^ a b c d Joseph Kahn (September 8, 2005). "Yahoo helped Chinese to prosecute journalist". The New York Times. Archived from the original on October 7, 2012. Retrieved October 7, 2012. 
  7. ^ a b "Imprisoned journalist Shi Tao's family files for review of appeal". Committee to Protect Journalists. August 25, 2005. Archived from the original on October 13, 2012. Retrieved October 13, 2012. 
  8. ^ "Appendix III: Details of Shi Tao's case". Human Rights Watch. Archived from the original on 15 October 2012. Retrieved 15 October 2012. 
  9. ^ a b Guido Fawkes (August 20, 2007). "It could have been me: Guido Fawkes on Shi Tao". The New Statesman.  – via  
  10. ^ Congressional-Executive Commission on China, Political Prisoner Database:Shi Tao.
  11. ^ "Shi Tao". Reporters Without Borders. Archived from the original on 15 October 2012. Retrieved 15 October 2012. 
  12. ^ "Journalist imprisoned". Committee to Protect Journalists. 8 December 2004. Archived from the original on 15 October 2012. Retrieved 15 October 2012. 
  13. ^ "China's Rights Defenders". Human Rights Watch. Archived from the original on 15 October 2012. Retrieved 15 October 2012. 
  14. ^ "'"Yahoo 'helped jail China writer. BBC News. September 7, 2005. Archived from the original on October 13, 2012. Retrieved October 13, 2012. 
  15. ^ a b Stephanie Kirchgaessne and Richard Waters (August 8, 2007). "Yahoo faces scrutiny in China case". MSNBC. Archived from the original on August 17, 2007. Retrieved August 17, 2007. 
  16. ^ a b c "US rebukes Yahoo over China case". BBC News. November 6, 2007. Archived from the original on October 13, 2012. Retrieved October 13, 2012. 
  17. ^ a b "Yahoo chief apologizes to Chinese dissidents' relatives". The New York Times. November 7, 2007. Archived from the original on October 13, 2012. Retrieved October 13, 2012. 
  18. ^ Dana Milbank (November 7, 2007). "Searching for an Explanation: No Results Found". The Washington Post.  – via  
  19. ^ a b Paul Elias (November 13, 2007). "Yahoo settles lawsuit by jailed journalists over decision to give info to Chinese government". Associated Press  – via  
  20. ^ "Yahoo plea over China rights case". BBC News. August 28, 2007. Archived from the original on October 13, 2012. Retrieved October 13, 2012. 
  21. ^ a b "Yahoo seeks to dismiss China case". Associated Press  – via  
  22. ^ Dibya Sarkar (February 21, 2008). "Yahoo Asks US Gov't to Help Dissidents". Associated Press  – via  
  23. ^ "IPFA awardees 2005". Committee to Protect Journalists. Archived from the original on October 15, 2012. Retrieved January 21, 2007. 
  24. ^ "Jailed Chinese Journalist Wins WAN Golden Pen of Freedom". World Association of Newspapers. November 28, 2006. Archived from the original on October 7, 2012. Retrieved October 7, 2012. 
  25. ^ "Banned, Censored, Harassed, and Jailed". Human Rights Watch. October 11, 2009. Archived from the original on 15 October 2012. Retrieved 15 October 2012. 

References

See also

In March 2006, he was given the Vasyl Stus Award, named for the Ukrainian dissident and awarded for "talent and courage".[2] On November 28, 2006, he was named the winner of the Golden Pen of Freedom Award of the World Association of Newspapers.[24] The award was accepted on his behalf by his mother.[9] In 2009, Human Rights Watch awarded Shi a Hellman/Hammett grant, which recognizes "commitment to free expression" and "courage in the face of political persecution".[25]

On October 18, 2005, the Committee to Protect Journalists announced that Shi was one of four winners of the 2005 CPJ International Press Freedom Awards.[4] The Committee's website stated that he would be officially presented with the award when he is released from prison.[23]

Awards and recognition

Prior to a trip by U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice to China in February 2008, Yang appealed to her to "actively pursue the release of Shi Tao, Wang Xiaoning and other Chinese dissidents who have been imprisoned for exercising internationally recognized rights of expression".[22]

Also in 2007, the San Francisco against Yahoo! for allegedly providing information (emails and IP addresses) to the Chinese government that caused the arrests of journalists Shi Tao and Wang Xiaoning.[20][21] After unsuccessfully seeking to have the suit dismissed,[21] Yahoo! settled out of court for an undisclosed sum.[19]

[19] Yang later met with Shi's family.[17]

This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and USA.gov, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for USA.gov and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
 
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
 
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.
 


Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from Project Gutenberg are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.