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Mark McLelland, Haiqing Yu & Gerard Goggin

In: The SAGE Handbook of Social Media

Chapter 3: Alternative Histories of Social Media in Japan and China

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Alternative Histories of Social Media in Japan and China
Alternative histories of social media in Japan and China
Mark McLellandHaiqing YuGerard Goggin
Introduction

In her essay for the inaugural edition of the journal Social Media and Society, Nancy Baym critiques the idea that there is something inherently new or special about recent social media platforms such as Facebook. She notes that older forms of media like televisions and telephones have always had social applications and that a range of earlier Internet functions have long enabled ‘connecting with friends and family, discovering what is going on in the world [and] sharing and expressing what maters’ (Baym, 2015: 1). For Baym, the rise of the term ‘social media’ is more about the corporatization of the Internet and the manner ...

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