In a timely matter, a right on target article magically appeared today on the BBC’s website titled “Can China control social media revolution?”. Click here for link.
Photo below of Beijing’s Forbidden City in the smog.
In a nutshell, the article discusses the rise of the homegrown Chinese Twitter/Facebook-like options such as Sina Weibo (Weibo meaning microblog), which are rapidly overtaking the Chinese internet in the midst of a fight between internet censorship and the freedom of speech.
Per Wikipedia, Sina Weibo is a:
Chinese microblogging (weibo) website. Akin to a hybrid of Twitter and Facebook, it is one of the most popular sites in China, in use by well over 30% of Internet users, with a similar market penetration that Twitter has established in the USA. It was launched by SINA Corporation on 14 August 2009, and has more than 250 million registered users as of October 2011.
Sina Weibo implements many features from Twitter. Yet, users must post with a 140-character limit which isn’t much given the expansive format of the Chinese language. Users may also post emotions (via symbols), as well as photographs and documents (which could be a big concern for the Chinese government in the event that the document is regarding leading a protest!).
The Chinese government is trying to control and censor the growth of these microblogs yet it remains unclear how long it will be possible to do so.
Anyway, a fascinating article that hit home about my most recent post regarding China’s censorship of the internet. Fellow bloggers, there is hope!
Stay tuned…I have downloaded all my pictures and believe it or not, I have over 800 photos from just 10 days in China! It is hard to believe but I remembered to bring my third-eye. Thus, it will take me a few days to sort through them and resume my posting process on China. I am really excited to share with you what I’ve found. It was such an amazing, contradictory place. I have so many stories, and so many photos to share. Thanks for reading and commenting! I have read every comment yet am a bit behind in responding. Thanks for your patience.