HYI Working Paper Series: Tang Xiaobing
围观改变中国？——互联网书写与中国式公共领域的特质 [Have Onlookers Changed China? Characteristics of Internet Writing and the Chinese-style Public Sphere] (Tang Xiaobing, East China Normal University)
Abstract: In recent years, micro-blog (微博) writing has profoundly influenced the public sphere. Many public intellectuals engage in this new form of public expression and hope it can play a more important role in pushing China to make significant progress in public culture and political democracy. When considering whether micro-blog writing can improve the quality of public debate and play a political role in public life, many scholars come to different judgments and conclusions. Some scholars think that the active micro-blog authors in China are a small part of the whole population and not representative enough. The appearance of Wechat (微信) culture and oppression from the government have rapidly weakened micro-blog writing culture.