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Speaker: Dr David Feng
Chair: Dr Paul Dwyer

Open to all

This talk covers China’s social media development over the past decade in general, and in the past few years in particular. Dr Feng has long been actively involved with social media in China: his presentation combines personal experience and the reasons behind the phenomenon with a more inter-disciplinary approach. The talk examines the blogging community in China as well as the use of Twitter, Facebook, WeChat and Weibo there and the attitudes to social media of the administrations of Hu Jintao and Xi Jinping. It also covers key “social mediated” events including the CCTV headquarters fire, the Wenzhou high-speed rail crash and the rise and fall of “big Vs” (prominent social media users with verified accounts). It further discusses what might be next for social media in a country in which the idea of the government being mere keystrokes away was alien just a few years ago.

Dr David Feng is a Visiting Academic and Visiting Lecturer at the China Media Centre of the University of Westminster. He graduated from the Communication University of China with a PhD in Communication, focusing on social media. Dr Feng has been active in the Chinese tech and social media world for almost a decade, and was among the first users of social networks in the country. He has spoken at TEDx and Ignite events about (among other things) Twitter in China, and has been featured in world media on the subject of tech and social media in China. Dr Feng has experience both in China (2000-2014) and in Europe (1988-2000, 2014-present).

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