How To Use Sina Weibo: Register & Follow Accounts
Weibo is China’s popular micro-blogging platform that serves over 250 million users. It functions very much like Twitter but with added features such as being able to place inline photos, videos, songs, and comments along with each post. Weibo is expanding fast and will soon even have an English version catered for the international market. This guide is for those wanting to get a head start, whether for fun, or maybe trying to develop a social presence for a business. I will probably do a few followup tutorials, but that will depend on demand and of course the launch of the international Weibo site this year. As for now, lets get started.
Go To Weibo’s Website
First is to go ahead and get to weibo.com if you haven’t already. Most of you will see a screen like so, but it may be different depending on the country you’re accessing from. What we’re looking for is the big green button to click to begin our registration process.
The registration page is straight forward. There are actually two ways to register, by email and local China phone. I will be describing the email route for this tutorial. Above, I have filled out a sample for you to follow. The email you provide will be your login name, so don’t put a fake one! The only part that may be confusing is choosing your location. The first drop down is what area or city you are in. What you’ll see listed are mainly cities in China. If you’re not in China, then you’ll most likely select ‘overseas’ or 海外 as shown here. The second drop down will narrow down to what district you are in for the city you chose. If your selection was ‘overseas’, then you’ll need to put down what overseas country you are in. Unfortunately, there’s too many countries here to translate, but here I have ‘North America’ 美国 chosen. When we’re all done hit the big green button to continue.
If all went well you should see a confirmation page asking you to confirm the email address which you provided. So log in to your email and search for the message sent from Weibo (it should stick out as it will be all in Chinese). Click the link provided. Congratulations, you have just successfully registered for Sina Weibo. Easy, right?
Some of you may want to stop here but for others who are wondering what this new page is that popped up after clicking the link, keep reading…
Choose Who To Follow
Here we have a list of people on Weibo listed by industry categories. You can click through each category to see if you recognize anyone who you’d like to follow. If you’re looking for someone in particular you may even try searching for their name in the top search bar. This may be difficult for some as most names are in Chinese. If you know who you want to follow I suggest doing a web search for their Chinese name and then copy and paste the name into the search bar. Once you find a person you want to follow, go ahead and click the green 加关注 button to add them. You’ll immediately see it turn grey to 已关注 which means ‘following’. When you’re done adding, click the green button on the bottom right to continue. Again, it is not necessary to add people in this step. You can search and follow anyone at anytime.
Search For Friends
This next step allows you to search for friends you may already know who use Weibo either by MSN or other email address. You also have the option to search by school, which I’m sure most of you probably won’t even know about your friends. I won’t go into too much detail with this step, but if you happen to search and find friends, add them like before and continue with the green button. If there’s no need for you to find friends just click the green button to take you to your homepage.
When you enter your homepage you’ll immediately see a feed for the people you chose to follow. If you didn’t happen to follow anyone, there should still be a feed of default accounts that were added automatically. And that’s it! Play around and experiment. You may also want to try downloading the Weibo mobile app which has English (for iPhone at least).