NGO2.0 and Social Media Praxis: Activist as Researcher

This article tracks the emergence of a particular brand of ICT activism that promotes the use of social media as a means of helping Chinese NGOs break out of their communication bottleneck. The author starts by introducing NGO2.0, an activist project targeting China’s rural regions, using it as an entry point to examine the practice of “social media for social good” and shed light on the ecosystem of social media usage by Chinese NGOs. The author also deliberates on the explanatory value of the binary paradigm of “rural vs. urban,” looks into the methodological implications of undertaking “social media action research,” and articulates what it means to be engaged in the hybrid practice of “activist as scholar” in the specific context of Cultural Studies.

Read at Taylor & Francis online.

Jing Wang

About Jing Wang

Professor Jing Wang is the founder and director of MIT New Media Action Lab and serves as the Chair of the International Advisory Board for Creative Commons China. She holds a joint appointment in Global Studies & Languages and Comparative Media Studies/Writing. Her first book The Story of Stone won her the 1992 Joseph Levenson Prize for the “Best Book on Pre-Modern China.” Her third single-authored book Brand New China: Advertising, Media, and Commercial Culture came out in Arabic, Japanese, and Chinese translations. Her edited volume (with Winnie Wong) "Reconsidering the 2006 MIT Visualizing Cultures Controversy" won the Council of Editors of Learned Journal's "Best Special Issue Award" in 2015. She is currently working on a book manuscript "Activism 2.0 and Nonconfrontational Politics in China." In spring 2009, she launched NGO 2.0, a nonprofit organization that specializes in ICT powered activism. Ford Foundation awarded her an eight-year grant (2009-2017) to develop NGO2.0. A new book INTERNET PLUS PUBLIC GOOD: PLAYING WITH NEW MEDIA was published in 2016. Wang’s current research interests include advertising and marketing, civic media and communication, social media action research, popular culture, and nonprofit technology, with an area focus on the People’s Republic of China.

 
 

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