In the digital era, WeChat, a most popular communication online tool in China, is playing a pivotal role with 1.58 billion monthly active users in China. Social networking sites (SNSs), especially WeChat, are of great importance for the seniors to maintain and develop their social network and social capital. The overarching goal of this study is to understand and examine the implications of using WeChat for social capital (bonding social capital and bridging social capital) and loneliness, among Chinese ‘silver surfers’. Based on an online survey (n = 303), we found that the WeChat use is significantly associated with social capital and loneliness in the group of people aged above 50, but there is a non-significant correlation between social capital and loneliness.
WeChat, WeChat use, Social Networking Sites, Social Capital, Loneliness
Paper Presentation in a Themed Session
PHD student, School of Communication, Hong Kong Baptist University, Hong Kong