Chinese social media is becoming a huge market in which many businesses are benefiting from. However, new research shows that not everyone is benefiting from social media in a healthy way. The Chinese magazine Banyuetan has blamed social media for the increasing divorce rate within China. The chart below shows the increase being seen in the past few years, with divorce rates steadily on the rise.Chart courtesy of http://chinaoutlook.com/rising-divorce-rate-adds-to-chinas-demographic-problems/
Why Blame Social Media?
The blame on social media basically boils down to these Chinese social media channels putting a wedge between couples. Instead of bringing people closer together, it seems to be having the opposite effect. According to the deputy of Expert Committee on Marriage and Family Research, Chen Yiyun:
Positioning functions on apps like Momo or WeChat make it easier than ever for men to pick up girls
Furthermore, a psychological counselor, Yu Kun, found:
In cases he has handed, extramarital affairs often are caused by social networks 50% of these times
So why is social media being blamed? For the most part, professionals are looking at the ease of finding someone else compared to the past. In the past, those who married were not bombarded with social media sites that allow to reach out to others that may be across the globe. People were simply more satisfied at where they were at in their lives.
Now, with social media allowing users to meet those with similar interests and tastes, it can make it easier to have the ideology that “the grass is greener on the other side”, leading to many divorces and affairs to take place.
Social Media Not the Only Culprit
To be fair, social media is not the only culprit for the increase in divorce rates in China. A professor of law in Jinlin University, Li Hongxiang, says:
The idea of ‘until death do us part’ is a weak idea, leading to many divorces
The changing attitudes about marriage for both men and women has attributed to the high divorce rate, as well as people staying single for longer before marrying. The idea that social media is entirely to blame is a bit outrageous. After all, social media is for connecting to people, thus it is the responsibility of the person to use this in a manner that is morally sound.