The largest one-day percentage decline in stock prices in China since 2007, the day has gained notoriety with the Chinese Government terming it as their “black Monday”. With the stock markets now closed in Shanghai, Chinese social media has gone hyper over today’s events. There has already been over 100,000 posts on Weibo about “black Monday”, attracting over 92 million hits.
Being the first major drop in the Shanghai stock market since 2007, this is the first economy panic that Chinese social media has been around for. Measuring the social media response to the crisis will give us information on how Chinese consumers communicate and socialise when it comes to state wide economic issues.
The high level of posts and hits reflects the high levels of internet and social media usage in China, as well as extraordinary levels of engagement to their countries fiscal and economic matters. This reflects on how Chinese consumers anticipate their purchases and consumption based on macro-economic information. Weibo and other Chinese social Medias have provided platforms for nationwide debate and scrutiny of the Chinese government’s fiscal policies in response to the stock market drop. Quoting a user, “Why China has chosen this particular period to allow pension in the stock market? It must be a purpose. I am afraid.” Opinions are rich on Weibo, with plenty of users sharing their views on today’s events.
With Chinese government censorship blocking access to western social Medias such as Twitter and Facebook, the likes of Weibo has shown to be a platform in which the Chinese can express their opinions and engage with each other as a digital forum platform enabling public expression and assembly.