Chinese video streaming services in the context of global platform studies

Wilfred Yang Wang, Ramon Lobato

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

76 Citations (Scopus)


While recent platform theory within media and communication studies has been developed around US-based examples, platformization has taken a rather different path in China. Focusing on the video streaming service iQiyi, this article asks: What can we learn from approaching Chinese platforms not merely as exception to Western models, but as an opportunity for theory-building around platformization generally? We argue that Chinese online video represents a useful case for rethinking specific elements of platform theory as currently developed in English-language scholarship. Through a close analysis of iQiyi’s interface and regulation, we develop two arguments. The first argument concerns the relationship between regulatory environment, market structure, and platform affordances; and the second concerns platform interfaces, personalization, and fragmentation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)356–371
Number of pages16
JournalChinese Journal of Communication
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2019


  • interfaces
  • iQiyi
  • personalization
  • platform regulation
  • video on demand (VOD)
  •  video streaming

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