The Information Have-more: Understanding the working class in the Platformization of the Chinese Network Society

All Abstracts > The Information Have-more: Understanding the working class in the Platformization of the Chinese Network Society

The Information Have-more: Understanding the working class in the Platformization of the Chinese Network Society

Authors | Affiliation:
WeiMing Ye | Peking University HSBC Business School; Luming Zhao | Peking University HSBC Business School

Presenting at:
1A | Platformization and Digital Labour in China 


Abstract:

In this article, the metaphor of Information have-more is raised, by focusing on the rise of Chinese digital working class (DWC) in a platformization-context, and updating the classic view of the “information have-less” proposed by Cartier et al. (2005). To explain this argument, we select one of China’s most popular digital platforms, Kuaishou, and examine the communication practices of the digital working class with the platform through a mixed research approach of netnography and critical discourse analysis (CDA). We argue that this practice goes beyond previous activistism approaches to Chinese working class’ resistance to the government and instead interacts with the platform to master more algorithmic gossip and strategies than the average person, thereby growing social capital while improving the class image of workers. We conclude by critically pointing out the limitations of the Information have-more metaphor. This article aims to highlight and expand on the general theoretical issues of the Chinese working class in the ICT industry.


About the authors

WeiMing Ye

Email: –

Luming Zhao

Email: –

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