In the last part of our interview with Derek Ling, CEO of Tianji, he said professional SNS grows slowly in China because the Linkedin model does not fit China’s environment.

In Linkedin, people frequently get requests like ‘I need this and this,” or “I need to hire such and such”. However, in China, it will be “uncool” to state those requests directly, said Derek.  “People in China have to be friend first before they can do business together.”

“That is why Tianji has a lot of discussion forums, groups and events, for the member to socialize with each other,” said Derek.  In short, comparing the US and the China model for professional SNS, the value proposition is the same – it is for people to search and contact business partners, but the way is different, said Derek.

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Sherman So

Author of Red Wired: China's Internet Revolution, the first book to completely survey the nature of China's internet. (http://redwiredrevolution.com/) She previously was the lead China technology reporter...