China rising
July 1, 2013

First came CCTV’s big boxer shorts, now the People’s Daily‘s colossal phallus. As the Chinese state media look to conquer the global market, their insecurities are showing. China’s microblogging site Weibo has been gleefully atwitter about the nearly 500-foot-tall new headquarters of the Communist Party house organ. The architect says the design reflects the ancient Chinese philosophy of “round sky and square earth,” but we know what’s going on here. Nice try, China, but The New York Times‘s is bigger.

Manly media The CCTV HQ was reportedly inspired by New York’s twin towers, but the Chinese saw underwear, or someone squatting over a toilet; the People’s Daily left no room for ambiguity. (Left: Sambuddha Mitra Mustafi; right: Zhang Wei)

The Editors are the staffers of the Columbia Journalism Review.