By XI MEITI
Western Media Correspondent
BATON ROUGE (China Daily Show) – Twice-weekly local organ of record the Picayune Sun-Tribune Weekly has become the latest victim of infiltration by state-sponsored Chinese hackers, the newspaper claimed yesterday.
The news follows revelations that reporters working for at least three major Western media groups – the New York Times, Bloomberg and the Wall Street Journal – have suffered several overseas security breaches, believed to originate in China.
“We first noticed web hits began declining steadily in about 2011,” vice-editor Wilbur Morris wrote in a prepared statement.
“We now believe this is directly related to a middling review of the Lucky Golden Dragon restaurant by Food and School Fete Editor Martha Jones, published in a September 2010 edition of the Picayune.”
Jones reportedly spent several hours undercover at the Louisiana-based takeaway, sampling the prawn crackers and frozen spring rolls, before penning the inflammatory 236-word hit-piece, which accused the Cantonese eatery of serving “a chow mein that left this reviewer wondering what happened to the soy sauce!”
Jones, 58, also questioned the lack of MSG in the Lucky Golden Dragon’s eight-dollar ‘Beef in Oytser sauce [sic],’ writing that “it could do with a little more” and even suggesting they offer customers a choice of dips in future.
Editor Morris says that since the review’s publication, several rambling emails he has sent to staffers have gone unanswered, while an old link to a syndicated article about clam chowder now simply returns a 404 error.
“I knew something was up… then I recently read about what happened to the New Yorker?” Morris told China Daily Show over a long lunch– referring to claims that several reporters’ email accounts had come under cyber-attack since penning investigative pieces about top Chinese leaders, including incoming President Xi Jinping and outgoing Premier Wen Jiabao.
“I contacted the FBI, but they told me they were busy solving crimes,” Morris revealed as the pudding course arrived. “Now that in itself tells you there’s something fishy going on.”
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