Makerspaces for the People: China’s Approach to Cultivating an Entrepreneurial Mindset

Written by Silvia Lindtner. In January 2015, the Chinese government released a new national policy called 众创空间 zhongchuang kongjian (“mass makerspace” or “makerspaces for the people”). The new policy was announced only weeks after the Chinese pr

Online Translation Communities in Chinese Cyberspace

Written by Chuan Yu. There is a “tradition” in China of translating almost everything from other languages into Chinese. Since the arrival of the Internet about 30 years ago, the practice of translation has also moved online. A number of online translation communities have been established for various purposes. In general, there are two types: audio-visual and …

Always on the Brink: Free and Open Source Software in China

Written by Matteo Tarantino. Free and Open Source Software 开放源码软件 (FOSS) is by now long past the stage of “novelty” in China. Yet its integration into the Chinese software industry is still problematic. FOSS stalwart operating system, Linux, has

Ethnicity and the Chinese Internet: Escape from Reality?

Written by James Leibold. Has the Internet changed what it means to be Chinese in the twenty-first century? It has certainly opened up new possibilities for performing ‘Chinese-ness’ and other forms of social/cultural identities inside the People’s Republic of China (PRC) and across the globe. Yet are the spatial flows and transnational reach of the …

Xi’s Internet: China’s new normal online reality

Written by David Kurt Herold. During the decade long reign of Hu Jintao and Wen Jiabao over the People’s Republic of China, the Chinese Internet flourished and Chinese netizens began to have a measurable effect on both internal and external politics. Foreign researchers repeatedly argued that the Internet was functioning as a precursor to the …

Selfies, trolling and one-night stands: From Chinese internet culture to digital media practices

Written by Gabriele de Seta. Recurring comments about my research project that I heard during my fieldwork went along these lines: “Chinese internet culture? How can you study such broad topic?” Professors and students, hardcore gamers and young

The latest case of online outrage: The Wei Zexi incident

Written by Jing Cheng. On April 12, 2016, Wei Zexi, a 21-year-old college student from Xidian University in Shaanxi China died of synovial sarcoma, a rare form of cancer. His death took over China’s Internet over the last week. On Sina Weibo, the hashtag #Wei Zexi Baidu Promotion Incident# invited 1.13 billion reads and 168,000 …

The ‘Voluntary Fifty-Cent Army’ in Chinese Cyberspace

Written by Rongbin Han. On October 15, 2014, President Xi Jinping met and lauded Zhou Xiaoping and Hua Qianfang at the high-profile “Forum on Literature and Art” in Beijing, and encouraged them to produce more works with “positive energy” (zheng

A Decade of Blogging in China

Written by Giorgio Strafella and Daria Berg. The effects of blogging and Internet use on Chinese politics and society have been a hotly debated topic in contemporary Chinese studies. Blogging first became popular in China in 2003 when the notorious online intimate diary of a young woman called Muzi Mei (b. 1978) created a scandal …

Bleak times for foreign media in China

Written by Raymond Li. China is the largest media market in the world, and therefore attracts many foreign media companies which flock into the country on the promise of lucrative returns. However, talking about the situation of foreign media in China is not an easy task, because the picture is not always clear cut as it appears …