“Hong Kong residents shall have freedom of speech, of the press and of publication;” so states Article 27 of the Basic Law of Hong Kong.
Pic 1: Game of pretending to be a newsreader at Hong Kong News-Expo
Amidst the low public confidence in the government, some question the feasibility and sustainability of one country two systems. Well, the Hong Kong News-Expo which is funded with seed money of $5 million from the HK government is determined to show that it will staunchly showcase the freedom of the press.
Upon entering, you would be hard-pressed to find any tabloid or gossip columns of yore. This is a serious museum for those interested in major historical events in Hong Kong, including the May Fourth Movement, the landslide in the Mid-levels, Occupy Central and June 4th Incident (Tiananmen sqare incident). The museum was a former home of Dr. Sun Yat-sen who was christened here and later became a wet market. The museum seeks to present a balanced view of events and show the development of news media.
Pic 2: Video recorder of TVB news on display
It makes a good respite from the heat as it’s just opposite Oolaa on Bridges Street and is a museum with free entry. There are some paid games such as pretending to be a news reader with real teleprompter (though Trump would say to hell with a teleprompter and look where that got him ) and having your picture in the news headlines. The souvenir shop is a bit dismal with some non-inventive T-shirts and books on sale. The perk is going on a free guided tour with the experienced guides who were former or current media professionals and their tours are lively with industry knowledge imparted.
Pic 3: Welcome home banner welcoming journalist and reporters home from reporting on June 4th Incident.
Surprising to us Generation Xers and Yers is that entering into the news profession in Hong Kong was once a matter of pride and joy. While we have come to accept news to be sensationalized, the media back then was well-respected and journalists would put themselves in danger’s way (such as reporting during the Sichuan earthquake and during the June 4th incident) so that the truth could be reported to the world.
Hong Kong News-Expo
Opening Hours: 10 am-7 pm (closed Mon and Lunar New Year hols)
Address: 2 Bridges Street, Central, Hong Kong
Guided tours: Sat: 1 pm, 3 pm and 5 pm, Sun 11 am, 1 pm, 3 pm and 5 pm (Cantonese only but the tour guides can accommodate)