Mediaculture. I like the sound. It's got teeth. Media and culture, the culture of media, or something else entirely? As with the concatenation of the words, I'm cramming into one post what might be saved for two, hoping to create a ligature (in typography, a ligature is two or more connected letters to indicate a single sound, for example, encyclopaedia as encyclopædia). There may even be a method to this:
Concatenation is the act of linking together two or more objects. The concatenation of two strings and is the string formed by joining and . Thus the concatenation of the strings "media" and "culture" is the string "mediaculture".The concatenation of two strings and is often denoted , , or, in Mathematica, . Concatenation is an associative operation, so that the concatenation of three or more strings, for example , , etc., is well defined.
Yesterday I wrote of the strange chasm that frequently occurs between the international press and what is reported as news in Vietnam. The 11th ASEAN summit in Malaysia became a sounding board and example. After posting the entry, it was released in international portals that ASEAN had passed a new charter. Yet I don't expect the new ASEAN charter to be mentioned anywhere in the Vietnamese press for the key declarations in the new ASEAN charter include:
The ASEAN Charter stresses, among other things, democratic institutions, transparency and good governance...
The 11th ASEAN Summit is themed "One Vision, One Identity, One Community". Yet others, such as the Network of East Asian Think Tanks (NEAT), see ASEAN rather as a "playground for diplomats".
The New York Times reports today that China has implemented media controls to restrict information about the recent protests which ended with military intervention leaving as many as 20 protesters dead. An overwhelming majority of the Chinese public still knows nothing of the event.
In the wake of the biggest use of armed force against civilians since the Tiananmen massacre in 1989, Chinese officials have used a variety of techniques - from barring reports in most newspapers outside the immediate region to banning place names and other keywords associated with the event from major Internet search engines, like Google - to prevent news of the deaths from spreading.
Beijing's handling of news about the incident, which was widely reported internationally, provides a revealing picture of the government's ambitions to control the flow of information to its citizens, and of the increasingly sophisticated techniques - a combination of old-fashioned authoritarian methods and the latest Internet technologies - that it uses to keep people in the dark.
The government's first response was to impose a news blackout, apparently banning all Chinese news media from reporting the Dec. 6 confrontation.
While the event was on holiday from mainstream media in China, it was frontlines in the international media. The discrepancy eventually forced China to make a comment and ultimately release its own official account of the event in the press. While the sanitized articles began appearing in the mainstream press, bloggers were offering a very different account of their experience.
"The Central Propaganda Department must have instructed the media who can report this news and who cannot," said Yu Guoming, a professor at the School of Journalism and Communication at Renmin University in Beijing.
"The domestic news blocking system is really interesting," wrote one blogger. "I heard something happened in Shanwei and wanted to find out whether it was true or just the invention of a few people." and another wrote, ""I don't dare to talk...There are sensitive words everywhere - our motherland is so sensitive. China's body is covered with sensitive zones."
On one of my favorite blogs, Supernaut enters "Chinese Mediaculture" with an interesting new link:
Nowhere has this new middle landscape become more clear than in the new media culture that has arisen in China over the last few years. Weblogs, bulletinboards, peer-to-peer distribution and chatrooms have made the sharp division between public and private lives problematic. While most of these new media are used for mere entertainment, on the internet Chinese citizens do employ a number of tactics to find or distribute information outside the official media system. More than once collective outrage in this middle sphere – somewhere between private conversation and the official media – has had political consequences. Conversations on bulletin boards and weblogs have spilled over to the official media and forced the state to investigate cases of corruption and even hushed up murder. Is this the beginning of a true civil society in China, emerging from these new middle grounds?
You must read Chinese Mediaculture. Thanks to Supernaut for the catch!
The Concatenation || Mediartculture
"The Philippines College of Fine Arts really have this thing for the alternative. It's a rebellious streak that's only reflective of that spirit of revolt which seems to fire every full-blooded UP student. (The State University, of course, is the breeding ground of both avant-gardists and revolutionaries.) The place has the following mission statement: "Arias' primary concern is the development of art and the artists. It provides professional venue for art exhibitions and art events, specifically performance art and new-media works."
Sources & Further Information
Images. Yang Fudong (one of my favorite contemporary Chinese artists)
New York Times. Beijing Casts Net of Silence Over Protest
Supernaut. Chinese Mediaculture
Philippine Daily Inquirer/Inq7. The excitement of young artists
Jakarta Post. ASEAN summits devoid of sense of real community