Link and Qiang Reading Notes

This reading material seemed to make the reader think about how today’s technology has made a huge impact on the world than without the mobility that we have today. Such example would be on page 84, “In any event, when a news item pops up in Chinese society today, it is often reported first on the Internet by eyewitnesses using cell phones or computers. Internet police can try to block such messages, but in many cases, especially if events are large and dramatic, they cannot” (Link and Xiao). One real life example that I can recall, is when there was mass public scrutiny when an ordinary bystander with a camera was waiting for a train on the subway, and saw a man in the tracks, trying to get out from the train’s path. Rather than attempt to help, the bystander took a picture of the man’s final moments before he was struck by the oncoming train. These are such events that go out, and there really seems to be no stopping any reports about it. I remember that the picture was even talked about it on the news the following day, and the news team members were confused as well about why the bystander simply took a picture rather than attempt to help. On page 85, there was another example about how “two high speed trains collided on a bridge”(Link and Xiao) and the way that was initially reported was via twitter. According to Link and Xiao, the Chinese government has an issue with free internet, and have taken steps in order to limit what is seen, and if such posts are deemed unpleasant towards the Chinese ideals, they will block (or at least attempt to do so) Chinese citizens from viewing such material.

Another point to the internet, in China, is that because the Chinese citizens are unable to “hold public assemblies” due to it being deemed illegal they do so through the internet. On the internet, they will “argue over the wording of petitions and manifestos, sign statements, vote in polls, and bring public pressure to bear on specific issues-all while each sits separately in front of his or her computer screen” (100).


Work Cited

Link, Perry and Xiao Qiang . “Language and Thought on the Chinese Internet.” From Grass-Mud Equestrians to Rights-Conscious Citizens.   83-105. Print.

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