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'Three Represents' and China's Youth: Using the Internet to Manage Social Change
Unformatted Document Text:  15 16% 37% 17% 12% 7% 7% 3% 1% Under 1818-2425-3031-3536-4041-5051-60Above 60 Figure 2: Age of Internet Users (CINNIC, 2002, p. 7) As a result of the growth and popularity of the Internet, enterprises and individual entrepreneurs have embraced the potential of China’s Internet development (Sheff, 2002). For example, Jerry Yang of Yahoo, sohu.com founder Charles Zhang, and Netease’s William Ding became entrepreneurial icons of the youth generation. Embracing this entrepreneurial spirit, youth have added Internet companies to their preferred job list of working for multi-national or joint venture companies. By the beginning of 2000, young entrepreneurs flooded the market with an estimated 15,000 Internet start-ups (Jeffrey, 2000). Forging Government-Youth Links: ‘Gauging the Mood of a Nation’ Given government social and Internet policy development, its diffusion and adoption rates and its characteristics, this new media technology has the potential to become a powerful mechanism to connect the Government to youth in more interactive ways. Two examples illustrate this potentiality. An Internet survey by the People’s Daily was launched ‘to gauge the nation’s mood’ on current issues affecting their lives (Hsieh, 2002). The survey was first collaboration between the domestic politics department of the People’s Daily and its online edition www.people.com.cn . It found that the top two issues related to the corruption and the impact of the WTO membership on China. The editor of the online newspaper suggested that the survey revealed that ‘the ordinary people are really paying attention to corruption’ (Hsieh, 2002, p.7). A second newspaper China Daily and its online edition http://www1.chinadaily.com.cn/news/index.html provide a web-based forum for Chinese citizenry to comment on various issues. For example, the website asks: ‘The 16th Communist Party of China

Authors: Weber, Ian.
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background image
15
16%
37%
17%
12%
7%
7%
3% 1%
Under 18
18-24
25-30
31-35
36-40
41-50
51-60
Above 60
Figure 2: Age of Internet Users (CINNIC, 2002, p. 7)
As a result of the growth and popularity of the Internet, enterprises and individual
entrepreneurs have embraced the potential of China’s Internet development (Sheff, 2002). For
example, Jerry Yang of Yahoo, sohu.com founder Charles Zhang, and Netease’s William Ding
became entrepreneurial icons of the youth generation. Embracing this entrepreneurial spirit, youth
have added Internet companies to their preferred job list of working for multi-national or joint
venture companies. By the beginning of 2000, young entrepreneurs flooded the market with an
estimated 15,000 Internet start-ups (Jeffrey, 2000).
Forging Government-Youth Links: ‘Gauging the Mood of a Nation’
Given government social and Internet policy development, its diffusion and adoption rates and its
characteristics, this new media technology has the potential to become a powerful mechanism to
connect the Government to youth in more interactive ways. Two examples illustrate this potentiality.
An Internet survey by the People’s Daily was launched ‘to gauge the nation’s mood’ on current issues
affecting their lives (Hsieh, 2002). The survey was first collaboration between the domestic politics
department of the People’s Daily and its online edition
www.people.com.cn
. It found that the top two
issues related to the corruption and the impact of the WTO membership on China. The editor of the
online newspaper suggested that the survey revealed that ‘the ordinary people are really paying
attention to corruption’ (Hsieh, 2002, p.7). A second newspaper China Daily and its online edition
http://www1.chinadaily.com.cn/news/index.html
provide a web-based forum for Chinese citizenry
to comment on various issues. For example, the website asks: ‘The 16th Communist Party of China


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