Zhengzhen Ma(z3325090) -Reading Journal 2

In week 8, we learned about Chinese sexual cultural. The article “Online Intimacy in a Chinese Setting” written by Anne was exploring the identities in web marriage of China, especially the youthful player. Web marriage refers to the activities that players can carry out including dating, getting married, establishing a family, raising children and even getting divorce. The players don’t seek to enhance offline experience in Chinese Virtual marriage, thus, anonymity is protected and personal identities are created (Anne, 2009, p409). In this journal, I will begin with the emergence of web marriage and then provide arguments for and against web marriage.

The web marriage emerged in China in early 2000s and become more and more popular. It is reported that 100,000 people had experienced web marriage in 2004 and it increased to 1 million people had played virtual marriage (wan, 2007, p55). The reporters carried out a survey of 80 peoples aged between 14 and 18 so as to know the reasons why youth addicted in web marriage. It showed what 38% of these changed their attitude to real marriage after playing web marriage (Anne, 2009, p412). Moreover, the one child policy also is a factor causing web marriage merged in China and become so popular (Anne, 2009, p420).

The article represented several positive effects of web marriage. It could relive loneliness for the woman who is always staying at home lonely as husband is busy for working.  Furthermore, it can satisfy emotional fulfillment when existence of difficulties in social and financial circumstances cause hard to get married. Besides, it can reduce pressures of school study and also meet their psychological needs. Lastly, the web marriage can make up for those parents who neglect communication to children (Anne, 2009, p419).

However, there are also negative impacts. The breakdown of marriage and abused of moral code are the consequences of use of intimate language. And the virtual marriage is not regulated by any laws (Anne, 2009, p413). In addition, according to Chen Tongming, the arbitrary web marriage will wrap child’s understanding of real marriage and divorce. They will be unable to treat marriage seriously when becoming an adult. He also mentioned web marriage is a way avoiding reality for adults so that it may adulterate the institution of marriage (The Epoch Times, 2007).

In conclusion, the web marriage games have both good and bad impacts. It is hard to say which impacts have more since depends on what way you think about. With various uncertain factors, you can’t know the person very well as reality is different to games. Thus, not many people support web marriage and it is seen as only with short period. Nevertheless, in my point of view, it has more positive impacts since it becomes an appropriate way to communicate with others and release their emotions. Besides, it escapes the problems of real marriage certainly faced with as it more relies on their emotion needs and communication rather than financial condition.


Anne E.M. 2007,  Online Intimacy in a Chinese Setting Asian Studies Review,Vol.31, p. 409–422

Wan Xiping 2007, Lun wangluo hunlian ji qi dui dangdai qingnian xianshi hunlian de fumian yixiang, Qingnian tanxuo 2, pp55-58

The Epoch Times 2007, Young Chinese Love Virtual Marriage Games, viewed at 4Oct, 2012 <http://www.theepochtimes.com/news/7-9-28/60152.html>



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