From an interesting q & a with Chen Guangcheng, conducted by Ian Denis Johnson:
...the problem is that many ordinary Chinese can’t get online. Right now, the percentage of Chinese with cell phones is high but in the countryside Internet access is relatively low. So I think a lot of these foreign broadcasters are wrong to stop broadcasting in shortwave to China. In the past, we listened regularly to Deutsche Welle, Radio Canada International, and of course Voice of America. But countries are planning to scale back or even cut these services. This shows that these people don’t understand the situation in the countryside in China.
The World Service shut down its Mandarin service last year, another victim of the managerial/geek 'let's put everything on the internet and save costs and anyway nobody listens to the radio any more' axis. Chen's normally characterised as an activist, but he's also a kind of deep China classic: the self-taught village intellectual, tuning into shortwave every night, consulted by his neighbours over baffling official documents, or to intercede with officials, or because he might have some idea of what's going on in the world. Such are the nobodies who listen to the radio.