Guanxi Launches New Events Social-app, Firefly, to Address Rampant Depression Amongst Chinese Youth - CW15 - OMAHA

Guanxi Launches New Events Social-app, Firefly, to Address Rampant Depression Amongst Chinese Youth

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SOURCE Guanxi Inc.

SHANGHAI, May 27, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Guanxi Inc. has released a new app called Firefly ( focused on getting Chinese mobile users out of the house, away from their screens, and expanding their horizons. Social media was originally indented to bring people closer together, but the reality has been just the opposite. By replacing face-to-face interactions and encouraging unhealthy social comparisons between users, traditional social media have contributed to increased widespread unhappiness all over the world, especially in China, ranked 112th in happiness level out of 156 countries[1]..Firefly is taking the different approach of encouraging people to get offline, participate in activities, and interact with people in the real world.

Firefly is an easy to use personal event assistant app keeping users informed of local events and activities. It intelligently learns about users to provide recommendations tailored to their tastes, location/time, behavior and social relationships. It not only allows for users to browse those event listings, but will also instantly alert them in real-time for the most important happenings. Its new feature, the Events Compass, gives users an exciting new experience by allowing them to visually discovering what's happening nearby in any directions. "We chose the name Firefly because their tails only light u­p when they are moving" says Alvin Wang Graylin, Guanxi's Founder and CEO. "We are using the latest technologies to help our users to become social fireflies, making their lives fuller and happier. Real friendships are built face-to-face, and events are the best way to meet like-minded people and share fun experiences. Initial user feedback has been highly positive."

Behind Firefly is a serious social issue. Unhappiness in China is widespread, especially among its youth, 20% of which consider committing suicide before the end of high school[2], making suicide the top cause of death among young Chinese, vs. accidental death in most western countries[3]. The development of social media has contributed to the issue by isolating Chinese citizens who spend 4 Hours a day surfing the Internet or playing games[4] at the expense of real-world interactions with friends and family. Additionally, constant exposure to friends' most exciting activities and each user's subsequent self-comparison to peers' curated image online, social media exposure has added to self-esteem issues amongst Chinese young. This issue isn't only a problem in China. "When you're on a site like Facebook, you get lots of posts about what people are doing. That sets up social comparison --Website -  you maybe feel your life is not as full and rich as those people you see on Facebook," says John Jonides, a University of Michigan cognitive neuroscientist who co-wrote a research paper reporting that the more college-aged youth said they used Facebook, the worse they felt. [5] Guanxi's own user research is consistent with the published research.  It seems to tell us that males are generally happier than females, and tier-1 city users are happier then smaller city users.  Not surprisingly, this correlates directly with the amount of outside activity users participate in. 69% of male users go out 5 times or less per month, where as 95% of female users surveyed went out 5 times or less per month.  50% of tier-one city users go out 5 or less times per month vs. 77% for smaller cities[6].  

Firefly was designed to encourage users to go out, and live life to its fullest. This in turn helps improve them as a person and builds their social network around common interests naturally. It is how social networks should work. The application is available on both iOS and Android platforms and downloadable from most app stores in China. It now supports Tier 1 cities in China with more cities being regularly added. More information can be gotten on the official website ( or by emailing

[1] United Nations, World Happiness Report

[2] China Daily "China's suicide rate among world's highest"

[3] China Internet Network Information Center (CNNIC), January 19th, 2014

[4] The China Post, "China netizens spend 4 hours a day surfing the internet"

[5] NPR, Facebook Makes Us Sadder And Less Satisfied, Study Finds

[6] Guanxi primary research, 5/2014

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