In China, this media push is known as "soft power." While many believe editorial restrictions will prevent Chinese media from competing on a world stage, it already reaches a wide audience. Over 2.5 million copies of China Daily's advertising supplement have been distributed in The Washington Post, The New York Times, and the U.K. Daily Telegraph.

There is no doubt that the Chinese government tries to present to the world a cultural landscape that accords with its own political narrative...But there is equally little doubt that Chinese publishing today is a vast and varied field in which it is not hard to find writers who both satirise and criticise the Communist party and its record.

If a high-profile event focusing on Chinese literature risks further undermining freedom of expression in China, then why is the British Council teaming up with the body responsible for censorship to bring a bevy of Chinese authors to London?

Muslim users who choose to ditch Facebook for the upcoming social network SalamWorld shouldn’t expect to find a Madonna video or discussion of sex anywhere on the site. Salamworld hopes to be a far cleaner version of Facebook, by “filtering out harmful content” and ensuring that its pages “uphold and respect family values".

In its latest move to reshape what Chinese viewers can watch on television, the government agency that oversees mass media has issued a new set of regulations that seek to restrict comedies, dramas and movies from abroad. The new regulations ban all imported programs during prime time and limit such shows to no more than 25 percent of a channel’s offerings each day.

China is taking this cultural war seriously, on both domestic and international fronts. Beginning Jan. 1, two-thirds of entertainment programs on China’s 34 satellite channels, including game shows, dating shows and celebrity talk shows, were deemed “vulgar” and cut, making way for programs that “promote traditional virtues and socialist core values.”

Young Indians, who have embraced Levis, McDonalds and MTV, are hungering for Western television. In an effort to attract younger viewers without offending the older ones, Indian TV is now showing some of America's edgiest shows – but cutting out the edge.

Hostile international powers are strengthening their efforts to Westernise and divide us," Hu wrote in an article, noting "ideological and cultural fields" are the main targets. "We must be aware of the seriousness and complexity of the struggles and take powerful measures to prevent and deal with them.