Pulse Might Run Into Content Issues In China


Pulse Might Run Into Content Issues In China

Back in February Linkedin took a big leap and launched in China. Linkedin will also be bringing in their news reader app Pulse into China. The company recently updated their job page for China and is currently seeking for a head of marketing, head of sales, etc. Looks like Linkedin is trying to play the China game slowly. Doing business in China is totally different than doing business in the United States. The whole mentality, the culture, the beliefs are absolutely different. Even though, the news app Pulse is doing extremely well in the United States, it might still struggle in China.


Originally Pulse started as a content aggregator for top news sites and blogs over the web. For a while, people were talking about how it was causing copyright legal problems. Now Pulse runs fully as a content aggregator from user submitted blogs or post from users on Linkedin. Discussions and top news could be found on the app. The app itself has a stunning design and a flawless UX/UI. 

Hoping to not run into any issues in China, Pulse is currently seeking a chief of editor for the app. Here is the job description.

What will I be responsible for?

The China editor will oversee a Mandarin version of Pulse (formerly LinkedIn Today), LinkedIn’s widely heralded professional content product. Pulse matches the right headlines to the right professionals at a massive scale, using a combination of algorithms and editors. Currently, 1.5 million English-language publishers feed into the product. Now, for the first time, Pulse will be available in China — and the right candidate will get the chance to shape and direct the content that members receive. Forging and fostering relationships with publishers to ensure their content is accessible, along with generating analysis on what’s working and what’s not and coming up with ways to increase engagement via content will come naturally to the successful candidate.pulse app

Content Issues That Pulse Might Run Into

There are actually quite a few different problems that Pulse might run into in China. First being one of China’s biggest problem in general and that is content restriction. China is extremely strict on what kind of content can be available on the internet or mobile web. Recall from our previous game article on how China just release the 13 year game console ban. China is serious about it’s content and how it effects it’s citizen. Sure, there are a lot of stealth junk out there for people in China, but if Linkedin wants to take this mainstream legally, they might hit a small roadblock. We will have to wait a while to see how well their executives deal with this issue.

China Doesn’t Need Another News App

If you have been keeping up with the China tech and startup scene, then you probably already know that the tech giants are fighting over for every piece of niche. Earlier, Tencent and Alibaba was go against each other to see who can grab a bigger piece of ChinaVision(a media production company) first. It’s going to be extremely hard for experienced Chinese companies to beat these giants and it’s going to be even harder for a new company that is entering China.

Wechat is the most used messenger in China. If your using a messenger on your phone in China, it is very likely that it is going to be Wechat. The thing about WeChat is that it is more than just a simple messenger like Whatsapp. WeChat has games, voicechat, portals and most importantly a newsfeed. People could share newsfeed all over Wechat just like someone would on Facebook. Most of the people nowadays get their news in China from WeChat.

It is very unlikely that people would just randomly start using Pulse, when WeChat is already an all in one system. For example, just yesterday my friend was talking to me about the latest updates on the Malaysian plane. I’m like, “where did you get the update from?” He replied saying, “It was on Wechat’s news!”.

In China people do not take UX/UI as seriously as users do outside of Asia. What’s more important to them is how many of their friends are using the product. Things spread like a forest fire in China and it’s going to be extremely difficult for Pulse to make a move unless they release a very tempting feature and growth hack rapidly. Linkedin themselves do claim that over 4 million people are already using the app. I’m not sure if that includes Hong Kong, Macau, and it’s surrounding english speaking cities.

Read Next: Top Startups To Watch Out For in China 2014



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