Why 80,000 Hong Kongese Took to the Streets to Support a Television Network

By Mitchell Blatt | Article

Nov 12

“Why 80,000 Hong Kongese Took to the Streets to Support a Television Network”, published in Vagabond Journey on November 12, 2013

On its surface the dispute between HKTV and the Hong Kong government over a free-to-broadcast TV license would appear to some to be a simple business dispute. Three companies applied for licenses, two were granted licenses, and now the losing company is mounting a campaign against the decision.

But viewing the controversy as merely a business dispute doesn’t explain why an estimated 80,000 protesters rallied in support of HKTV on October 20 and tens of thousands more stood outside the Legislative Council Complex on November 6 as debate took place on a measure to investigate.

The public sentiment that has emerged in support of HKTV illustrates growing distrust of the Hong Kong government and anxiety over what the future holds. As the Chinese Dream takes hold in the Mainland, many see a Hong Kong Nightmare on the horizon.

At the November 6 gathering, HKTV employees had the 2012 Olympic song, “This is My Dream” by Kashy Keegan, playing on speakers.

“This is my heart, This is my soul, This is the only love I’ve known, This is my dream…”

A protester at the event held a sign that said, “This city is dying you know.” At the June 1 protest march this year, a protester was handing out signs that said, “Where has my dream city gone?”

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About the Author

Mitchell Blatt is a travel writer, editor, and columnist based in China. He is an author of two guidebooks, Panda Guides Hong Kong and Panda Guides China. He has been published in National Interest.org, The Korea Times, Roads & Kingdoms, Vagabond Journey, The Hill.com, City Weekend, Silkwinds and The World of Chinese, among other outlets. See examples of his published articles.

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Mitchell Blatt is an intrepid travel writer, and an author of two top China guidebooks, who brings his readers deep into the cultures of the places he explores. Subscribe now to get real stories of real people in real places around the world delivered right to your inbox.