When I recently spaced out during a lecture, I noticed all the international Chinese students had the same site opened on their laptops: Sina Weibo, a Chinese microblogging site similar to Twitter.
According to World Journal, many young Chinese in Southern California are not only using the service, they are carefully managing their Weibo profile as a profitable career.
Blogger Amy told the newspaper that she hoped to get a business sponsorship or advertisement deal by generating a large following population on her Weibo. She reads 10 or more entertainment websites per day and makes regular news aggregation update on her profile. She also trades shifts with her partner in China to cover entertainment news in both countries.
One Alhambra resident shared with World Journal a potential downside about Weibo. Unlike Facebook, Weibo has an anonymous and public readership. The user has no idea about who’s reading your posts, picture, or information. There’s also a risk of your information or creative content getting copied or forwarded.
Constantly tapping on smart phones, many of my Chinese friends update their Weibo what feels like constantly. In order to obtain the highest possible readership, many users in Southern California even post in accordance to the Chinese time zone. For instance, five in the afternoon here is when Chinese users are just getting up and ready to start the day. Posts made then usually get more attention.
Distributing original and unique information is the key to attract followers, Huang Jia Yi, a Weibo user who has accumulated more than 30,000 followers, told the World Journal. Huang also said Chinese students have an advantage because they have much access to the first-hand American information which interests people in China.