Beyond Facebook: RenRen, QQ etc

I’ve blogged a few times about our facebook presence which is going well. This FB development is ongoing and we should be trialling FB ads in the near future which I’m looking forward to and I’m sure I’ll be blogging about. But despite the apparent dominance of FB it is not (yet!) global and other social network sites are out there.

A couple of colleagues have gone out to China to meet international agents and reminded me that FB and YouTube are blocked out there (although when I was in vietnam over xmas there were ways around this…) and this got me thinking about developing a presence on chinese sns for our chinese potential students, students, alumni.

A colleague is Chinese and could help with the language issue, and if successful we could, feasibly, employ/co-opt a Chinese student to keep an eye on it (as a student ambassador or something?) and flag up any questions that arise. I’ve had a quick trawl of google and bangor have a presence on a variety of sns (orkut hi5 etc).

An international student has posted a blog comparing FB with Renren which makes some interesting points, and there is a short video with some interviews with various students. It sounds like many international students are currently using both, for different groups of friends. I was also quite suprised by how the two sites differ, which is interesting in itself and probably reflects different cultural norms and values.  

I’m going to carry on having a look for stuff, but this could be quite promising. If anybody knows anything about this or has views (ethics?) I’d be interested to hear them.


About digitalscholar

I am a sociologist with an interest in new technology. Previously I’ve worked on a number of projects at Lancaster University and the Open University looking at the use of new technologies and social media by researchers. I was also a social sciences teaching fellow at the foundation centre at Durham University teaching sociology and anthropology. I am now a senior lecturer at the University of West London's Institute for Teaching, Innovation and Learning where I oversee the foundation provision and support retention. I'm sure I'll still be interested in, and occasionally blog about, tech related things. I use this blog to post thoughts about using new technologies in my professional academic life and wider thoughts and links relating to technology more generally.
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