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Telstra Accused Of Pulling Ads in Chinese Newspapers For Apple

Telstra is at the centre of claims that they stopped advertising in Chinese newspapers in Australia that criticise the actions of Beijing leaders, at the request of Apple, who control the flow of Co-Op dollars to Telstra to market their iPhones.

Apple who are desperate to hold onto market share in China at “any cost” have also been accused of removing a News Apps from its app store in China at the request of the Chinese Government.

Talking to the Australian Newspaper, Maree Ma, General manager and the person responsible for advertising at The Vision China Times, said that she was told in August last year Apple did not want their products to feature in ads by major telecommunication Companies such as Telstra in their paper anymore.

Ms Ma said the last time they had iPhone ads was in October 2015 for the iPhone 6S.

“The last time we had iPhone ads from Telstra was in October 2015. Since then, when Telstra runs their iPhone ads, they do not place any with our paper,’’ she said. “There was a campaign last year in 2016 we missed out on.”

She said that when telecommunications companies now place ads with The Vision China Times they do not include Apple products. “Since Apple’s products still appear in Beijing aligned or PRC government influenced Australian-Chinese media, we believe we have been ‘blacklisted’ by Apple for political reasons as they are trying to protect their business in China,” she said.

Another Chinese newspaper The Epoch Times, said they often have ads placed by large telcos such as Telstra, and had expected to secure a contract for Telstra ads for the iPhone 6S along with other Chinese media outlets in October 2015. However, the spokesman for the paper said the $7,000 advertising contract was never booked “We have never had issues with Telstra. But then at the last minute they had to pull out then we asked why. (Our advertising agent) said it’s actually from Apple,” the spokesman said.

Both Apple and Telstra have not commented for this story. Swinburne University professor John Fitzgerald, who studies Chinese soft power, told the Australian that it appeared to be further evidence of China attempting to increase control of media in Australia.

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