Anyone who follows how Internet impacting on Chinese society should pay close attention to the case of Du Daobin. Du, 39, is a very representative voice of young generation of outspoken “liberal public intellectuals” in China, emerged from and empowered by the Net. In the past year or so, Du has become one of the most prolific and respected voices in this new online community. The Internet has given such voices a public place to express themselves about social and political issues, even if they are mostly limited to BBS bulletin boards, which i consider a newly emerged public sphere in China. that makes his arrest a symbolic marker of the limits of freedom of expression in today’s China. Because Du’s writing has resonated with a broad range of academics and others in the Chinese intelligentsia, an unprecedented public petition, signed by professors, journalists and writers inside China, has been circulated defending the right to free speech and calling for his release.
Here is some more information about him and his case:
KR Washington Bureau reported on November 6, 2003: Chinese scholars protest crackdown on Internet dissent.
CPJ’S statement in English.
A public letter to Wen Jiabao, signed by more than 50 intellectuals, including
law professor in Beijing university. This is in Chinese and on an academic website inside China.
Some of his writings in Chinese.
English translation of one of his articles on Falun Gong.