New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has urged New Zealanders to dismiss any information relating to COVID-19 that has not come from her government.
“I’ve been watching for some days and this is not unique to New Zealand, that in the midst of what is a global issue, as you would expect, there are a number of rumours that circulate,” Ardern told reporters.
“I am present on social media, I see it myself. I cannot go around and individually dismiss every single rumour I see on social media, as tempted as I might be.
“So instead, I want to send a clear message to the New Zealand public: We will share with you the most up to date information daily. You can trust us as a source of that information.”
Ardern continued, “You can also trust the Director-General of Health and the Ministry of Health. For that information, do feel free to visit at any time to clarify any rumour you may hear covid19.govt.nz, otherwise dismiss anything else.
“We will continue to be your single source of truth,” she said.
Now let’s contrast that with a 1980 BBC interview with Wang Chang Yun, the then director of the New China News Agency:
Interview by BBC in 1980: The role of the press in China. pic.twitter.com/nDdPg8d6DL
— Tong Bingxue 仝冰雪 (@tongbingxue) April 13, 2020