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Fact-checker needs some fact-checking

By: Jason Wang

January 11, 2013

Logically speaking, Steve Toloken’s opinion piece (“CSPA ad a cause for fact-checking,” Nov. 19, Page 6) made many errors by making blanket statements about the organizers of the China Scrap Plastics Association and Beijing Guojiajiye Info Co. Ltd., which jointly held the Eighth China Plastics Recycling and Exhibition & Congress.

The event was a popular exhibition without sensitive issues. It was not a problem to report on the event and its organizer. But the situation about the two associations has been sensitive, and since the Viewpoint only mentioned one organizer, it was obviously biased.

The main point of the congress was the founding of the China Scrap Plastics Association, yet such an important ceremony was not mentioned at all in Toloken’s article.

It is an oversight again for Toloken, as a professional reporter, not to write that more than 400 participants, six distinguished guests from government, more than 50 booths, an awards ceremony and an excellent discussion about enterprises were also highlights of the show.

Toloken mentioned one important fact, that the email prccppia@ replas.org.cn is used, but he did not clearly state that the email had been used by Beijing Guojiajiye Info Co. Ltd. for over seven years, another oversight.

Toloken is a reporter for Plastics News, but the opinion expressed in the column was his personal point of view. It should have been expressed in a blog, not in Plastics News.

I have not listed all of the problems with the column. But I want to emphasize that as a professional newspaper, Plastics News should not have used this column to arouse the interest of readers, but should have helped readers understand the information in a comprehensive or holistic manner.

As a professional reporter, in the fact-checking process, Toloken has made repeated oversights — and we are really suspicious of what’s really behind the fact check.

Editor’s note: This is the personal opinion of Jason Wang, executive vice president and secretary general of the China Scrap Plastics Association.