In the year or two after the Tiananmen tragedy, even the reformist approach seemed likely to get short shrift in any reconsideration of press legislation. Given the importance and reach of modem mass communications, however, the issues surrounding the role of the news media in China's modernization and political life were not about to disappear. One could anticipate that when debates on journalism reform reemerged, they might be further along than where they left off. For instance, they might give more weight to the claims of inherent entitlement that underlay student demonstrators' demands for freedom of the press in 1989. An important question for future study of China's press law efforts is likely to be how incipient notions of natural rights blend with traditional emphases on the collectivity and social good. As for how the press law that eventually emerges would actually work, and the extent to which even an expansively worded law might further freedom of the press in China in practice, this surely will hinge on larger developments in Chinese politics and society in the years to come.