A Study of Older People's Motivations for Using WeChat in Tangshan, China

  • Liu Fan School of Communication, Universiti Sains Malaysia, 11800 Minden, Penang, Malaysia.
  • Nik Norma Nik Hasan School of Communication, Universiti Sains Malaysia, 11800 Minden, Penang, Malaysia.
Keywords: WeChat, Elderly, Social media, Motivations, China

Abstract

The emergence of social media platforms has overturned traditional modes of interpersonal communication, access to information and personal lifestyles, challenging traditional concepts of interpersonal communication and social communication. It has had a significant impact on the thinking and behaviour of older people, as well as promoting the creation of new modes of social communication and social interaction. Although older people are not the mainstream social media users, with the advent of an ageing society, social media has penetrated the older population, and the rate of social media use among older people has increased significantly especially in China. WeChat, as one of the most commonly used social media, has become the leading choice for people to communicate with each other online. The emergence of WeChat has brought together traditional communication and new Internet technologies. This paper takes WeChat as an object of study and examines the motivation of older people to use WeChat based on the theory of uses and gratification. The study finds that the motivations of older people for using WeChat can be divided into four categories: expressing concern, strengthening contact, obtaining and sharing information, and presenting oneself.

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Published
2022-08-30
How to Cite
Fan, L. and Nik Hasan, N. N. (2022) “A Study of Older People’s Motivations for Using WeChat in Tangshan, China”, Malaysian Journal of Social Sciences and Humanities (MJSSH), 7(8), p. e001693. doi: 10.47405/mjssh.v7i8.1693.
Section
Articles