Editor’s note: Below are excerpts from Tricia’s article on Makeshift, Pleasure Hacking:
Lao Bing is doing what most males at the Internet cafe are doing, have done, or will be doing later on that night—searching for porn. Users across the world are drawn to this corner of the infobahn; some estimate that porn accounts for a full third of Internet bandwidth.
It may be in the quest for porn that many male college students learn the fundamental lessons about what makes the Internet work: sharing and openness make collaboration possible. These qualities are rare in an education system that rewards individual achievements over teamwork.
While political censorship and digital surveillance continue to cause suffering, most people in China don’t use the Internet to fight back directly; they use what brings them pleasure.