According to the Blue Book of New Media 2014 released by Chinese Academy of Social Science on June 25 2014, China’s new media have entered the “micro” era. From the user structure analysis, “WeChat users are mostly the middle class and micro blogging users are mainly the grassroots”. The number of WeChat users has now reached 600 million, with more than 270 million active users at home and abroad every month. This app has released over 20 language versions, covering more than 200 countries and regions worldwide.
There are 103 websites in China that provide micro blogging services, with customer accounts numbering more than 1.3 billion. Tencent has the largest number of micro blogging users, while Sina Weibo users are most active. The survey shows that people under the age of 24 use WeChat more frequently, accounting for 33.7 percent of the total. As to income structure, the middle class who have a monthly income of 3,000 to 5,000 yuan make up the highest proportion, about 32 percent.
Chinese micro blogging users are comparatively younger, have a lower educational background and lower income, and are concentrated in large and middle sized cities. There are more male users than female, and users with a bachelor’s degree or above tend to be more active. 77.9 percent of micro blogging users have not received a college education; about 80 percent of them are aged from 10 to 39, and only 8.95 percent have a monthly income of more than 5,000 yuan. About 71.96 million micro blogging users have no income, making up the largest proportion of the total, about 25.6 percent. This may due to the fact that students are the largest micro blogging group. However, micro blogging users have a lower overall income than Chinese Internet users.
The blue book also reveals that adolescents have a stable online communication network and tend to distrust unfamiliar users. At the same time, few adolescents have experience of online dating. Statistics show that 32.9 percent of adolescents get information through the Internet, and instant messaging apps are their first choice. “64.1 percent of the respondents only communicate with fixed users, provided that they trust each other. Up to 55.7 percent say they ‘do not believe’ strangers. Only 10.7 percent of them say they have ‘had’ online dating experience, and 11.6 percent show strong resistance to online dating, saying they will ‘never’ do that.”