As most people might know, Chinese government blocks Facebook although it is a very successful social media, which has been widely used in the world. However, with the rapid development of Internet and the increasing needs of connecting, “Renren (www.renren.com)”, a local Chinese “Facebook” was born.
Renren provides many similar applications as Facebook: you can find friends, post blogs, share photos, or play games. However, there are also some differences.
One of the most obvious differences is the disclosure of recent visitors. Unlike Facebook, on Renren, you can know who have seen your page and when. Thinking about that you upload some photos and many old friends come to your page, you may feel very excited to know that your friends do care about you although living from a distance. However, people may have some concern when checking someone’s page, especially when you don’t want to be too overwhelming.
There is another interesting phenomenon: users of Chinese “Facebook” tend to avoid adding family members, which is totally different from American people. This is not because that Chinese people don’t care about the family; on the contrary, they care too much, especially the parents. This might be the result of seeking for personal space. As it is known, most Chinese families have only one child. The parents and grandparents give all of their love to the only child and put her/him at the center of the whole family while the child may need some privacy.
Sometimes it is hard to find a personal space in the real life so they might try to get it online. For example, if met some trouble at work, they probably would not let their parents know from Renren, because the worries the parents may have will be exaggerated and they don't want to be over-protected or let their parents worry too much about them.