About China Daily ...
I will leave you with a China Daily news meeting:
A journalist at the government-run China Daily newspaper in Beijing describes what goes on behind the scenes.
Despite, or perhaps because of what I have written here, I have had quite a few emails asking me how to get a job at China Daily. Well, let me try spell out the basics here.
What's the work like?
As someone has already pointed out in the comments, the job of a foreign copy editor is undemanding and low paid. You work a five day week, and some of this may be in shifts, working say 6pm until 1am, or more likely 10am to 7pm. It depends where you work. Generally, the work on the supplements such as Beijing Weekend, 21st Century and the business supplement tends to have more regular hours. The work isn't that busy or difficult, so long as you can correct badly written articles. But it can be frustrating, like when you spend two hours re-writing a feature and then find they put it through without any of your changes.
You can expect to earn 6000-8000 rmb a month, which is a bit less than what you would get as an English teacher. However, you do get a nice new apartment (with dial up internet) and all your bills are paid for you. And three quarters of your pay is in US dollars rather than rmb, so you can save it up and take it home if you wish. Also, the China Daily office don't muck you about or rip you off, and will sort out all your visa stuff for you and even give you a [one way] ticket to China, and a return ticket if you complete your one year contract. Most English polishers are given a one year contract - in rare circumstances this might be renewed, but most have to leave after 12 months.
Most editors have some basic experience or skill in editing/proofreading, but a qualification or experience in journalism doesn't seem to be essential. You have to pass a writing/editing test that China Daily will email to you, to see if you can manage the basic copy editing skills. You won't be working as a journalist but as an English polisher, so don't expect to be writing features or working as a reporter (though there is talk that this may change). Working at China Daily might be a good introduction to the basics of editing, but is no substitute for experience on a western newspaper.
Most polishers are Brits at the moment, but there are some Canadians, Kiwis and Americans. The China Daily style is British, but this doesn't preclude North Americans.
You are entitled to about 20 days holiday a year, I think, but can't take any in the first six months of your contract. You also get the extended holidays like National Day. As you may have read, China Daily does organise some outings to local sightseeing spots and resorts, all of which are on the company tab.
China Daily is stuck up in the wilds of north Beijing, not near anywhere in particular. It is half way between the student ghettos of Wudaokou in the north west and the expat/business/bar districts of Sanlitun/Chaoyang in the east. You can get around by taxi for about 20 kuai a pop, but the traffic is terrible. The China Daily office is midway between the third and fourth ring roads, and about half an hour away from the nearest subway line [number 13 at Shaoyuju]. There's no decent coffee or bars nearby, and Carrefour is about 15 minutes by taxi.
There are about a dozen foreign editors working at China Daily, most in their twenties and there's usually something happening at the weekends. As you can read from my posts, there's usually plenty of drinking involved.
Do I have to be a Communist/Pro-China?
Nah. There are some card-carrying foreign Party members on staff but it's not compulsory. Likewise they are not expecting you to be Israel Epstein. but I wouldn't apply if you are a practitioner of Faln G0ng.
Language? Do I need to speak Chinese?
No. All the Chinese staff speak English. So much so that it's not a good place to practice your Chinese, and if you want to learn you will have to enrol in lessons outside working hours.
If you are still interested after all that, you can contact the foreign affairs bureau [Waishiban] at email@example.com The guy in charge is Pan Zhongming (firstname.lastname@example.org). They have vacancies from time to time, and do all the application procedures via email.
But don't tell them I recommended you. Good luck.
(And in the meantime here are some pics of the place):