BRISBANE: The battle for domination of the physical and digital public realms has been crucial to the fortunes of the Hong Kong protesters. Their overwhelming numbers in the tense stand-off has captured our attention over the past eight weeks. However, there are less obvious dynamics at work as protesters use public space – both physical and digital – to maintain their advantage. Hong Kong protesters have drawn the world's attention to the fragile state of play in this Special Administrative Region of China. As many as 2 million people, out of a population of 7.5 million, have poured into the streets, protesting the erosion of their special status. READ: How did Hong Kong, my home, turn into a war zone? A commentary These protests have been remarkably effective in the face of a stubborn Hong Kong leadership, which has for now backed down on a contentious proposal to make it easier to extradite Hong Kong residents to mainland China. In physical terms the public realm means places to gather freely with diverse others with high visibility. This makes them a focus for expressions of public conviction. Many great cities of the world contain iconic public places, such as Taksim Square in… Read full this story
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