The aborted Green Dam-Youth Escort Censor-ware Project in China: A case study of emerging civil participation in China’s Internet Policy-Making Process
The educated and affluent Internet users in China have posed great threats to the stability and legitimacy of Chinese communist’s regime where the access of non-government dominated information become a possibility. To restrain Chinese citizens’ access to any Internet contents that are considered to undermine state control, China has developed and implemented one of the most sophisticated multi-layered Internet filtering systems in the world. These projects include the Golden Shield (or Jin Dun) and the Great Fire Walls of China that were implemented in the infrastructure to deter any undesirable or politically sensitive information.
The case study collected discussions and discourses from newspapers, websites, and blogs in Mainland China and Hong-Kong, SAR. A thematic analysis method was used to identify recurrent themes (i.e., arguments, points of contention, and concerns) that Chinese Internet users have about the Green Dam censor-ware project. These themes were interpreted from Paltemaa and Vuori’s (2009) theoretical framework that helps understand the evolution of technology and its role in Chinese Communist Party’s (CCP) political control over China. Data demonstrate the dynamics among the roles of government institutions, Internet regulatory regimes, the Internet technology, and a rapidly emerging civil society in China.