Speaking about the next 300 million Chinese internet users at SXSW in Austin, Texas on Future 15 Panel

(reposted from CulturalByt.es)

Just bought my tickets to Austin, Texas for SXSW - who else will be there? This will be my first SXSW! I get to play with the amazingly smart and playful Glenda Bautista, who invited me to join the Futures 15 line up.  Future 15’s are a SXSW curated panel of short talks on specific topics. Last year Baratunde was on the same panel and I heard that he killed it with his talk: How to be Black. This year, Glenda is moderating the panel again and giving her own talk on how to actually put together a kick ass panel that is diverse. Not as easy as it sounds so she’ll be breaking it down!

I’ll be on the Diversity and Social Justice panel on Saturday, starting at 3:30pm. My talk will be about the future of the internets from the perspective of 300 million Chinese migrants and the possibilities for social change. 

Sleeping at Internet Cafes: The Next 300 Million Chinese Users #300MM

Saturday, March 12th, 4pm

In China, over 300 million migrants reside in cities; these communities represent some of the most marginalized and poorest groups that are now actively incorporating new communication tools into their lives. These migrants are also the fastest adopters of digital tools and the quickest growing population of digital users. What do these coinciding cultural-technical processes mean for the people undergoing these shifts? Based on my fieldwork in China over the past three years, I focus on three areas that I think will point to the future of social change and innovation in China: gaming, entertainment, and consumption.

(Thanks to Kristen Taylor for helping me come with up with the title!) For the next year, I’ll be posting daily observations up on Bytes of China

My dear friend Morgan Ames will be speaking right after me! WOOOHOO! Her talk, Will OLPC Laptops Bootstrap Education in Latin America?, is about how OLPC is being used in schools. It will be a treat to hear her talk because she just returned from 6 months of fieldwork in Peru and Uruguay so we’ll be the first people to hear about her analysis. If you want some juicy background on OLPC, she recently published an article with Mark Warschauer, Can One Laptop Per Child Save the World’s Poor?.

My talk will be special to me because it will be last speaking engagement before I move to China for fieldwork. And I can’t imagine a more fun audience to speak to about my work. And it’s scary and exciting to imagine that the next time I give a talk in the United States will be after at least a year of fieldwork in China. So one of the best parts about presenting this at SXSW is that I’ll have to throw a going away party in Austin!

And I’m also excited to meet all these people I’ve been following on the internets. So who else is going? Let’s chat!

My friends will be speaking on these panels below - so here’s my tentative list of talks that I will be attending. Let me know if you will be there - would love to check out your panel! Oh and check out the SXSW schedule through SCHED - it’s much easier to use than the SXSW scheduler (thanks glenda for the tip!)

Saturday March 12th

9:30am-10:30am, Tim Shey (w/Chloe Sladden, Fred Graver, Gavin Purcell, Lila King, It’s Not Tv, It’s Social Tv

11:00am-12:00pm, David SasakiThe Impact of Social Media Tools in Mexico

12:30pm-1:30pm Benjamin Bratton(with Molly Wright Steenson) ,Urban Technology on the Dark Side

12:30pm-1:30pm Ryan ShawTime Traveling: Interfaces for Geotemporal Visualization

4:00pm - 4:10pm Tricia Wang, Sleeping at Internet Cafes: The Next 300 Million Chinese Users

4:15pm-4:30pm Morgan AmesWill OLPC Laptops Bootstrap Education in Latin America?

Monday March 14th 

12:30-1:30 Baratunde Thurston, Comedic Communication: Developing User-centered Humor Design

Tuesday March 15th

11:00am-12:00pm Kenyatta Cheese (w/ Heather GoldAllee Willis & Bill Corbett) Indie success: Caching in on Collaboration

tricia wang