Roger(2009) created the term Post-demographics which refers to those data that is not demographic, and could be grouped by different interests such as movies, sports, TV shows, etc. These grouped data could somehow show the basic social networks under different social media platforms. Social media researchers also aims to explore further underlying rules from the post-demographic data, especially in social networking.
Here, I want to mention two social media platforms: Twitter and Weibo. Both of them are microblogging platforms, which, from my perspective, post-demographic method could fit well for reasons as follows:
First, these platforms are topic-driven. Information could be spread rapidly via topic mode because one topic is brief and mysteric, which attracts people to participate. Microblog provides topic the medium (a hashtag) to be noticed by people. Big population would finally lead the public opinion. That’s why so many politicians and celebrities have their public accounts. Then we users start to get used to the “hashtag mode”. For instance, me myself as an active weibo user recently would chronically go through the top 10 topics first, then choose several topics which attract me most to have a broader view about people’s opinions.
Therefore, people start to realize that this topic could lead them to others who have the same interests or point of views. Weibo also finds it, so it provides a function which categorizes the topics into movies, songs, travels, etc. This could be regarded as the demographic
Fig 1. Sample screenshot of top topics on Weibo
Second, following is another kind of social network which is different from Facebook network.
References: Rogers, R. (2009) “Post-Demographic Machines”. In Annet Dekker and Annette Wolfsberger (eds.), Walled Garden. Amsterdam: Virtual Platform, 29-39.