Federal NDP Leader Thomas Mulcair is reaching out to Canada’s Chinese-speaking residents by going to where they (or at least some of them) are: Sina Weibo.
The Chinese-language social network is used by nearly 400 million users worldwide, and while Canada-specific numbers aren’t available, a share of that is likely to come from the one-million-plus speakers of Chinese languages identified in the 2011 census.
“Weibo reaches out to the vast and growing number of Chinese-Canadians on the Internet,” Mr. Mulcair said in a statement. “It’s a way to connect with them directly and hear the issues they face. I’m excited to join this large online community and I look forward to engaging with them.”
Mr. Mulcair is the first prominent federal politician to join the Twitter-like site, though he follows in the footsteps of Vancouver Mayor Gregor Robertston and celebrities such as figure skater Patrick Chan.
Both Mr. Mulcair and Mr. Robertson rely on staffers to translate their updates.
Weibo has had its share of controversies. It has been more willing than other social networks to censor its users, allowing it to survive in a country where the government seeks to control online conversations.