EastSouthWestNorth in Reverse

No, this has nothing to do playing with compass points.

At the New Media and Social Transformation: Conference this weekend, I will be talking about the EastSouthWestNorth experience.  One reason why I blog is to bridge the gap between Chinese-language versus English-language media coverage of China for the English-reading public.  The model is not limited to this particular situation but applies to any country/subject in any languages.  I am only one person and there is a limit as to what my output and impact can be.  So I hope that others will take up this model and make a difference in the areas where their personal skills and interests lie.

So I am going to translate for you a section of a blog post at the Chinese Tianya-hosted blog 我们的世界.  The front portion goes through a blog post by Austin Arensberg on the typology of bloggers.



(in translation)

The Growth Process of My Blog

In my opinion. whether the foreigners understand us is not most important.  The important thing is whether we understand the foreigners.  Therefore, I got this idea: each day, I will translate one or two articles of news or commentary in the western media about China.  At the same time, I will compare them against the reports or commentaries on the same event in the Chinese media.  From this, I can find the relative differences and then I can understand the positions and angles by which westerners look at China.

To tell the truth, when I first started the blog, I did not follow my original plan.  Usually "I fish one day and then I spend the next two days letting the net dry in the sun."   I was not very active.  As time went by, I slowly found out that more and more people were reading me.  So with the encouragement of those 'hits,' I worked harder and harder with the writing.  Today, there are more than one hundred 'hits' per day.  When I think that so many people come here everyday to read my blog, I get stronger and stronger and my writing is becoming easier as thoughts come to me like tides.

One day, I was chatting with a friend on MSN.  As we chatted, the other party surprisingly wrote: "You have become more objective now when you talk."  I was surprised and I asked, "Why?  I don't feel anything?"  The friend thought about it and replied: "Maybe it is because you are blogging regularly."

Yes, to a certain extent, my blog has transformed my life.

So the new media may cause a social transformation.  Before that happens (and it may never happen), a deeply satisfying personal transformation takes place first.

If you can read Chinese, then 我们的世界 will be an interesting blog for the reasons that he/she described.  It is EastSouthWestNorth in reverse, to compare English-language versus Chinese-language media coverage of China for the Chinese-reading public.  Of course, this is a simplification, since blogs are personal works and therefore take on the unique characteristics (thoughts, sentiments, styles, contents, training) of the bloggers.