I have never tried to log in to my Facebook account when I went back home on summer vacations. So this never come to my attention; however, my friend just told me recently that Facebook is blocked in China. It may not be the news to some of you but I am shocked. Consider the fact that Facebook is available in over 70 languages; to raise the question why it won’t enter the biggest user market is without doubt.
Now, a website similar to Facebook in style called renren and another one similar to Twitter in sylte called weibo dominate Chinese social media marekt. Why do we use our own social media sites? Becasue Chinese government would like to control them. In the U.S., you have freedom of speech and you can say anything and everything you like on Facebook. However, in China, we cannot say bad things about our government. This is just part of the Chinese culture and tradition. On renren, if there is a post that the administrators determine is imporper, it will be deleted immediately. With Facebook, Chinese government won’t be having the rights to do such things. This is the main reason why Facebook won’t be entering the Chinese market even though China has more than 500 million users.
The most recent news shows that both the North Asia director Jayne Leung and Chief Executive Officer Mark Zucherberg indicate that they have no planns to enter Chinese market any soon. Personally, I think it also will be harder for Facebook to enter Chinese market at this point since renren, weibo and QQ is so pervasive already. China has so many population, so a lot things we do have to handle differently than many other countires. All in all, there is nothing wrong to protect government’s dignity and to maintain the decency of social media sites. I just hope we can find ways to share with the world in the future when facing similar issues.