Fake Buzzfeed account on Weibo changes look after copycatting complaint

The owner of a fake BuzzFeed account on Weibo that has more than 112,000 fans has deleted the social news site’s logo from the page after concerns were raised with the Chinese social network.

Fake buzzfeed account

The new-look fake BuzzFeed account

Weibo maintains that the page, which still carries the BuzzFeed name, is legitimate because it produces ‘original content’ that is translated in Chinese. The new version of the account is now peppered with the logos of Western social networks, including Facebook and YouTube, which are banned in China.

Weibo spokesman Tony Tong told Mumbrella: “The content that they posted on Weibo is all original, translated by them from a website that they also mentioned on their feed. They are just using few logos as background and I don’t see any improper activities or misleading.”

First version of fake BuzzFeed account

First version of fake BuzzFeed account

Scott Lamb, BuzzFeed’s international VP, raised concerns about the replica account late last month.

He told Mumbrella: “It can be resolved fairly easily, or we can create our own new account. More than anything it is exciting to see that our sort of content works in China, and that our brand is known in China.”

BuzzFeed has been experimenting with Weibo to monitor the response to its articles on the popular Chinese platform.

Meanwhile, BuzzFeed is ramping up its plans to expand in Asia, with office openings to come in Japan and India, with foreign language versions expected to roll out by the end of the year.

The company is considering opening a regional base in Singapore or Hong Kong.


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