Chinese Network outside of China

Social networks overseas Chinese

Image representing Baidu as depicted in CrunchBase

Image via CrunchBase

For the largest Chinese social networks, well known as Tencent QQ, China is no longer enough. For over a year, the giant instant messaging and Web China launches abroad and tries to seduce the West with an English version of its software and internationalized, a kind of Chinese with a penguin MSN: QQ International .

The laowai who has tried to use QQ (even in English in a previous version), it will make you smile. MSN QQ is more kitsch “full of goodies galore and custo, youpeeeee”. It goes 5 minutes to chat with Chinese friends who really have it, but no more thank you. Finally, it is my experience. I much prefer my Skype sober (yes compared to QQ) and my contacts use more!

Sure QQ account is on the Chinese diaspora around the world to spread QQ beyond the borders of the Middle Kingdom. I’m curious to see what happens in terms of penetration rate among non-Chinese populations.

QQ Icon

QQ Icon (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

But it is a trend to watch, I am sure it will not be the only giant Chinese web trying incursion beyond the Great Firewall protection, especially if it is positive. Finally, the WTO will hopefully put a grain of sand because it’s nice to want to branch out elsewhere, but if you put a spoke in the wheel for those who want to do the same at home, it is not very fair-play stuff, is not it?

Of course I see noon to my door. Face my little window on the Internet, I would really like to see more foreign successfully pierce the wall of the Web cursed. But the setbacks Google certainly calm the ardor. However, we already hear talk of reconciliation. Baidu and Bing have already advanced side search engine, while the side of social networks Facebook asks Sina, but discusses JV (Joint Venture), especially with Baidu. The heyday of social networks in China are they the case of Chinese business to follow!

Use VPN in china is the key

Use social networks when you are abroad in China

But when you are a foreigner in China, unless his own profession either in the web or you really want to address the subject with a good background in Chinese, Chinese social networks repel us, passed the curiosity. Just because our friends to us, they are on each side of the border and bring some of the other social networks, it is mission impossible. So we move even when most of our time on non-Chinese networks, on which also our Chinese friends the most persistent and sometimes manage to open their way.

Yeah, I had my Kaixin by curiosity and to be in contact with Chinese friends who used it. But just as QQ, it took a while and I ended up deleting the account, for the sake of serving and refocus “my life online” we say.

Image representing Facebook as depicted in Cru...

Image via CrunchBase

But to go on Facebook or Twitter from China, we must blame. In recent years, it is blocked 100% of the time by the famous Great Firewall, when it is blocked as previously sensitive periods for China. But today, as long as you work in conjunction with the West, that you exercise in the Web, or simply that you wanted to keep track of what happens to your loved ones in the country, it is almost unthinkable to happen completely all these tools. Facebook, Twitter, Youtube, or even just Google: How overseas in China do not use frequently one of these sites?
Why is it blocked?

The Great Firewall is like a giga Internet filter placed around the borders of China, and prevents users from China to browse foreign websites “sensitive” in the eyes of the Chinese government. Previously, it does not blocking the sites “bothersome” for the party. I will not list them here, not really want me to block or detect!

Yes but now, that was before, at the time of Web 1.0, when the content of each site was relatively slow edited by webmaster, the use of the Web was not so widespread.
Meanwhile, during the past 5 years, we live in the age of Web 2.0: Web increasingly edited by users, thus less controllable and having seen the emergence of ultra giga platforms popular in the world as Facebook, YouTube, etc …

Image representing YouTube as depicted in Crun...

Image via CrunchBase

And the user, is expressed. Especially when something is good and must alert the others. The first effects were felt by China in 2008 during the events in Tibet. Since then, over Facebook, Youtube more, nothing … Any site basically UGC (User Generated Content = the content is created by users of the website and not only by its webmaster) beyond the control of the party is blocked understand networks social outside China.
The solution

So how do we do: the most common is through a VPN, which would just dig a tunnel under the wall with knowledge of places where you can quiet out on the other side. It requires good equipment and an accomplice who has prepared the ground for you, otherwise you are doomed to butter in the wall.

For a long time I used proxies or Freegate (small local software similar to it), but it is highly unstable, and when to find the right IP for 15 minutes each time before you ride alone or middle of a session, it quickly becomes tiring … blocker. To an extent that I ended up dropping Facebook was a time.

And then one day … I found Astrill (This note is not sponsored!). It cost me a few USD per month, but I can say that I found life on the web with this tool, which makes me more default for at least 18 less. I recommend so highly. It changes the life and approach to daily internet session, and in addition it works on iPhone😉

Communicate on internet in china

Another advantage of this study is to highlight the strong integration of these networks. Any phenomenon of Chinese Web is spreading millions of users in record time. Everything goes faster and stronger in China, so is the relay events Viral Web. And if there are those who have understood very well, these are the marks that organize and sponsored games on social networks, and launch viral campaigns, successful or not!
The bulk purchase: the Tuangou before Groupon

Logo of Groupon

Logo of Groupon (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

What constitutes the originality of the Chinese Internet company and in any case at least one form of innovation that has not been copied to the West, the concept of group buying, here called “Tuangou” 团 狗.

The formula of group buying to get better prices grew strongly to 2008: Finally it is the first time I’ve heard from my colleagues. I was a little hard to understand, moreover, it was the first time I heard it. Sure, at first it was offline, but it was quickly focused on the web.

So, no, I do not think Groupon has the scoop on the idea, perhaps to make the business model of the Internet, and it is still not sure. Still, here, today is really a popular way to buy. My colleagues reserve the badminton on Tuangou sites. The most famous of them being 拉手 网 I believe. Not surprising that this concept works very hard here, with such a dynamic social networks. Groupon from elsewhere to settle, it is not for nothing, but he has a hard time with all fierce competitors and seasoned it will encounter.

China goes to microblogging

Image representing Twitter as depicted in Crun...

Image via CrunchBase

One of the latest phenomena on the Internet dated social Sina Weibo is Chinese I mentioned above, and micro-blogging in general. Twitter The Chinese will soon have nothing to envy their American counterpart if not practiced self-censorship to successfully continue the reverse of the first attempts that had been closed.

The micro-blogging in particular allows to create a bridge between the world of the Web and of mobile content creation. And when you know the mobile penetration and its social role phenomenal in China, we can not be surprised adoption rate of micro-blogging in China.

Below against a graphic (a bit small, sorry) sent “kindly” by Digimind who believed surely solicit a company interested. It will at least here. It says that in just two years, Sina Weibo has already managed to gather 140 million members, and especially that grows faster than Twitter. Twitter still room for him to remain a world leader. But if one day he tries to venture into the Chinese market, the little blue bird might have to eat a few tweets and be shut up in a wave of red weibos.

Here anyway, Sina weibo is on all the languages ​​of the local ecosystem Web. I also see regular advertising for the social network on buses in Shanghai. Not sure twitter is there even in the United States.

The battle for Chinese market Internet so much fantasizing looks tough, and it certainly will not be for nothing. Companies, brands will quite naturally seek to take advantage. A monitor how the phenomenon will be repeated and changing practice here.

Social network in china

Since a few weeks I see bloom numerous articles about social networks in China. Is the increased interest for them in the West with the recent launch of Google+ or real development of these and attractiveness to foreigners here? I do not know very well, but being as it were “in the business” I have to make my turn a little note.

Especially because, casually, I have a point of view quite interesting. If so!

Because social networks in China, it is not that social networks used by the Chinese mass. For me it covers three main aspects:

Of course social networks used by the Chinese in China
But also, it is for foreigners in China
Chinese and networks seeking to export
Social networks of Chinese in China

Firstly, and yes, the Chinese use as well their social networks. Not only do they use them, but they are really the appropriate and suitable for their use of the Internet.

Image representing eBay as depicted in CrunchBase

Image via CrunchBase

As with everything that makes the Chinese Web here our great Western names are not worth much. As Baidu and Taobao were able to thumb its nose at Google and eBay or YouTube Youku and Tudou, Renren Kaixin make QQ as MSN and Facebook.
Twitter also for its Chinese, called Sina Weibo 新浪 微 博 (literally, the Sina microblogging, that’s original!). A real phenomenon of Web meet a growing success among Chinese netizens.

All these big names have of course the famous Great Chinese Firewall (read more details below), which pushes the frontiers of China’s competitive world. So they can use the big cake royally Chinese netizens. And this is actually a big cake is just over 500 million Internet users in China! Be aware: many Internet users in China than Facebook users in the world!

Political interests behind the Great Firewall, but certainly economic interests! It’s not really about me, but it gets better by saying it. Moving!

A Social Web history, with its own characteristics

Image representing YouTube as depicted in Crun...

Image via CrunchBase

What is certain is that the social component of Web in China is no exception. Quite the contrary. According to Sam Flemming, the subject expert and founder of CiC, a company specializing in the study of social networks in China, China would be “the landscape of social networks more complex, more fragmented but also the most developed in the world”, with aspects typically Chinese. To illustrate this, he also publishes interesting computer graphics has the merit of putting into perspective the development of the Chinese Internet population and habits over the past 15 years.

Image representing Baidu as depicted in CrunchBase

Image via CrunchBase

Thank you also to Olivier who brought to my attention in his blog, even if they disagreed on the history of the creation of the Great Firewall;)

In this infographic, I zoom in on particular two diagrams showing the evolution of the Internet “Social” in China, which show firstly that this is far from a recent phenomenon around which activities are structured .

Those who manipulate the Chinese Web in recent years left without surprise the historical and persistent fora, famous BBS, which are for me the origin of the high rate of “creators” of content among Chinese netizens, and this culture strong among the Chinese to learn about the smallest things on the Internet and many other Baidu Baike BBS and Baidu Zhidao. In any case much more than in France it seems to me that although I have lived too long in China? Perhaps to counter, consciously or not, this lack of information and channels of expression under the cope of the party and the Chinese Government? (But I digress ..).

I surf therefore I play and I share everything!

This analysis also overlaps quite well with one another, a little older (2009) gives an overview of social networks in China. This paper put in evidence that the Chinese Internet user seeks primarily to entertain (“Entertainment”). He looks so much video and spent many hours playing online. And social networks knowing the Chinese have developed gambling activities on their platforms. Kaixin is a very good example. As outlined in this presentation, if no one is surprised that the Chinese websites nearly always begin by copying the Western success very quickly they are changing to meet the expectations of local netizen.