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The Bobs: Best Blog Award to be presented to an unlikely patriot
Li Chengpeng didn’t start out wanting to make a difference. In his past life he was a cool and popular soccer announcer. He was also a believer in the Chinese government. Now he’s a little older and has become an unlikely patriot. He has achieved a certain celebrity status in China, not for being a good-looking sportscaster, but rather for his daring social criticism. Five years ago Li became a online activist fighting against the illusions propagated by the Chinese government. And he is definitely still cool. His blog has over 7 million fans who call him “Big Eyes Li”. He has a special influence on the young and media savvy in China who are working on creating a new information generation that is nipping at the edges of a civil society. He is also the 2013 Bobs winner for best blog.
“I view the Bobs awards as one of the few really important prizes I have been given in the past years,” said Li in an interview with DW after the prize was announced. “The Bobs is precious to me because I don’t receive any awards in China. As you might know, authors who speak out the truth have a rough time.”
A free press is a vital ingredient if economic development is to improve the well-being of Chinese people. This will not be easy, and support from places like DW plays an important role.
Li will be in Germany next Tuesday to accept the award at the 2013 Global Media Forum in Bonn and he is looking forward to meeting like minded bloggers. “I would like to speak with them about how they managed to break through their walls,” he said.
Representatives from the five other jury winners will join Li as a part of the ceremony. Also coming out of China is the winner for best innovation, freeweibo.com, a play on words from the Chinese microblogging website SinaWeibo. FreeWeibo provides access to content that has been filtered by Chinese government censors – and the award will be presented to Carl Lee in Bonn. Also receiving their awards will be Stephanie Hankey for the Most Creative and Original, Kodjo Kiki Kouassi for the Reporters Without Borders Award, Houda Lamqaddam for Best Social Activism and Acter Mahfuza for the Global Media Forum Award.
The quake that changed his life
Crumbling walls are what changed Li from conformist to crusader. After witnessing the destructive aftermath of an earthquake in 2008, he was deeply moved by the loss of life and was compelled to independently investigate construction codes. He discovered many buildings were built using sub-standard materials except for one school that didn’t collapse because it was actually built properly. This inspired his first essay, “The truth about the amazing survival of students and teachers at the Longhan primary school.”
Using his typical sarcasm Li has said about his life: “before 2008, I was an idiot.” The earthquake collapsed Li’s illusions and he realized that truly being a patriot meant working for the well-being of his fellow citizens and providing an example for others. Since then he has been working to tell the truth about the small things that can have a big impact.
“He gives young people a very good example of how to influence the future cause of China,” said Chinese journalist and Bobs jury member, Hu Yong. “The award shows that the jury members also think that a blogger like Li Chengpeng can influence millions of young Chinese people in making them aware of censorship, to be more free, more open and to be more active in the political process.”
In January thousands of fans lined the street for the release of his new book, a collection of essays titled, “The whole world knows”. At the event he was forbidden by authorities from communicating with the audience in any way but he managed to sneak across one message – “I love you all”, written in marker on his t-shirt.
Find out more about the Bobs and all of this year’s winners at www.thebobs.com
Date2013-06-11 | 9:45
Tagsblogs, bonn, Global Media Forum, June 18, online activism, Reporters Without Borders, social activism, the bobs
Get an inside look at DW
DW wants to give you the opportunity to see where and how we work, which is why we have created 360. It’s a unique site that will take you behind the scenes at DW and let you see how people and technology come together at a first class news desk. We also offer interesting stories from journalists and staff that work in Bonn, Berlin and abroad. So go ahead and check it out at www.dw.com/360 !
Date2013-05-06 | 12:46
Pakistan in focus of DW’s Media Dialogue
DW Akademie has announced a call for papers for its Media Dialogue on May 29, 2013. This is the fourth installment of the symposium which will focus on “Pakistan’s Media Landscape: The Effects of Liberalization”. The event will be held in Bonn and will welcome international media researchers, political scientists, economists, legal experts and journalists to discuss recent developments as well as future trends in Pakistan’s media landscape. DW Akademie is organizing the Media Dialogue in collaboration with Bonn-Rhein-Sieg University of Applied Sciences. The deadline for paper proposals is February 25, 2013.
Date2013-01-22 | 2:07
Next Global Medium Forum to focus on economic values and the media
Planning is already underway for the next Global Media Forum, DW’s annual conference featuring panel discussion, workshops and more with representatives from the media, civil society and other sectors.
The theme for the June 17-19, 2013 Global Media Forum is “The Future of Growth – Economic Values and the Media.” The conference will address the ongoing challenges facing the world economy, from political tensions to climate change and resource scarcity.
Event organizers stated: “Sustainable economic development is a sociopolitical issue in which the media play an important role. The convey information and knowledge. But they are also expected to alert us to problems and hold those responsible accountable for their actions.”
Topics for discussion at June forum will include good governance for sustainable development, balancing economic growth, the economy and the environment, and the path to social justice.
Date2012-11-01 | 9:30
New platform for musicians and music-lovers
Every year, DW highlights the work of young musicians by inviting youth orchestras around the world to perform at Bonn’s Beethovenfest. Now, DW is taking it one step further with its DW Music Campus page on Facebook. It offers the latest information on music and cultural exchange in Germany and provides a platform for musicians – especially young musicians – to exchange ideas and opinions.
DW is looking for people to join in on the conversation – so whether you have participated in the Orchestra Campus project in the past, or are just interested in classical music, go to Facebook and get involved.
Or just listen – DW offers a full range of podcasts from the Beethovenfest performances.
Date2012-01-26 | 9:34
TagsBeethoven, Beethovenfest, bonn, classical music, Germany, music, orchestra, orchestra campus, youth orchestra