Asia Likes Facebook, But Friends In China Are Harder To Find [Infographic]


Due to China’s stress over the Tibet before 2008 Olympics, the Facebook candy was snatched away from the social networking kids in china. Social media sites like YouTube, Facebook, Twitter and Wikipedia were blocked by Chinese government. The direct reason for the blockage of Facebook was due to the riots in Xinjiang, China.

Originally, they only blocked it in the area where the riots were taking place which were claimed to be organised via Facebook and other social networking sites. Later on the people across China found they could not access Facebook anymore. This continues until today. The government wanted to disable communications between rioters and organisers of the riot. Chinese government are extra cautionary against any kind of their policy breach.

With their Great Firewall, they managed to block many websites. Even sites that have not been blocked have been closely monitored. Any content made by either government supporters or Uighur sympathizers that is deemed controversial is immediately taken down by officials.

Excluding China, the top ten countries like India, Japan, and South Korea had high-growth rate in Facebook usage since early 2011. And China with a huge population could prove to be the heavenly destinations to once again patch up with Facebook. But it could be a tedious job to once again promote Facebook to a country where there is a proxy for each and every social media equivalent websites as shown in the figure.

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Mark Zuckerberg was spotted walking around Shanghai with his girlfriend Priscilla Chan, which obviously led to speculations of Facebook’s patch up strategy. The word “vacation” was more like a business trip to China. Mr. Zuckerberg’s previous trip to China with Ms. Chan was also billed as a vacation, although he also made public visits to the leading Internet companies Sina, Alibaba and Baidu. Baidu had no comments about Mr. Zuckerberg’s current China trip.

About 450,000 people in China access Facebook and other banned sites using proxies, tunnels or VPN software. Even so, China ranks a measly 101st on the Facebook global list, well behind the likes of Congo (90), Albania (78) and Bangladesh (55), according to figures on socialbakers.  Facebook’s recent IPO filing revealed that it continues to evaluate entering China and Zuck himself paid a visit as part of a mini Asia tour in March, possibly to meet prospective local partners.

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