What happened to China’s voice Q&A platform Fenda after its 47-day close?

Fenda, China’s voice question-and-answer platform, on Tuesday resumed services after being closed for 47 days. The reason for closing was that content on the platform was facing regulations, Sina Tech reported. Now Fenda has only three categories of content – workplace, health, and science.

Launched on May 15, Fenda allows its users to sell their knowledge and insights via voice message. Common Fenda users can ask questions of particular celebrities or experts. Those asking the questions can offer a price for an answer – and then the person being asked chooses whether that price is acceptable. The person being asked chooses which particular questions they answer, and are paid after answering each one. Other users who hope to listen to the answer must pay a small sum of money – a single RMB (15 cents).

The price of a question varies greatly. Wang Sicong, the only son of China’s richest man, Wang Jianlin, amassed over RMB 200,000 (USD 29,984) answering questions on Fenda.

As of June, Beijing-based Fenda has attracted over 10 million users, among whom one million are paying users. The transactions on Fenda have reached a total value of RMB 18 million.

Inspired by reddit’s “Ask Me Anything” phenomenon, originally anything could be asked on Fenda. However, on August 10, all content on Fenda was gone. Business insiders speculated that some content on Fenda was not in line with China’s internet regulations. Among other things, some questions and answers were deemed to be too crudely sexual for a public Q&A platform.

Fenda and knowledge sharing is not the only sector affected by these regulations. China’s top media and television watchdog – The State Administration of Radio, Film and Television – recently issued a regulation requiring live streaming platforms to obtain a “network broadcasting license”.

In June, Fenda landed its USD 25 million Series A financing, led by Sequoia Capital China and Vision Capital.

(Top photo from Flickr.com)

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