Weely Reflections

My Tech World

Before this class, I have never paid attention to the technology I’ve used although I am surrounded by various technologies in my daily life and work. I don’t think I am a tech person, and sometimes I even prefer the traditional ways. When I think of a tool that I used to connect with others. It depends on who I would like to contact, if I am going to contact people who are in China, the first tool that pops into my mind is Wechat. Some of you probably don’t know what is Wechat. WeChat (Chinese: 微信) is a Chinese instant messaging, social media, and mobile payment app developed by Tencent.

Image from https://blog.viral-launch.com/news-updates/amazon-news-updates/six-alternatives-to-wechat/

I used it in contacting all my family and friends in China. On WeChat, I can text, send voice messages, and video chat. It’s completely free. Wechat is everywhere in China. Besides communicating with others, you can use it to pay for your food, buy groceries, take buses, etc. Nowadays, Chinese people seldom use cash and credit cards, if you have a smartphone and install a Wechat. You can do EVERYTHING in China. Every morning, I check my Wechat first to see if my family sends me any text messages, and quickly browse the news. However, WeChat is also a tool that the Chinese government monitors their citizens’ speech, especially people who are living outside of China and whose IP addresses are not located in China. They have the function of doing sensitive keyword searching. If a person sends or shares some anti-communist words. The government will know that and your account will be permanently banned. Thus, I have to be cautious about what I say or send when using Wechat.

If I contact people in Canada, most of the time I would use Facebook messenger or WhatsApp, but sometimes I would also use traditional ways to contact people, like phone calls, texts, and emails. Sometimes, I also prefer face-to-face conversation with people because I might have phone anxiety or telephobia – the fear and avoidance of phone conversations. If I could communicate with people by text or face-to-face, I would never choose to call them!

Image from https://community.spiceworks.com/topic/1916342- have-you-experienced-telephobia

With the COVID pandemic, I connect people from work by using Zoom or Microsoft Team. A lot of our employment workshops have been moved online via zoom, which I like and don’t like. I like it because it’s convenient that I can facilitate the workshop from home and don’t have to go to the office. I don’t like it because I feel it’s hard to build relationships in front of a screen and no human physical contact! When facilitating workshops, I use platforms like Google Classroom, Google docs, PPT, and spreadsheet. Google Classroom can help me organize my classes, communicate with my clients, leave assignments to them, etc. I would like to know more about different educational technologies to make my training more interactive and engaged.

I found now my screen time is much more than in the past, maybe like 10 years ago. For example, I use a laptop for my work and study. I read books on my iPad and Kindle. I watch shows and movies on my phone. I play games on Nintendo Switch, iPad, and smartphone. We haven’t turned on a TV for years, and I barely read a physical book now! You can never imagine it 15 years ago!

Technology has developed so much nowadays and I hope to learn different educational technologies that could help my clients and myself to learn knowledge and interact with the world!  


  • Christina Puscus

    Echo, thank you for sharing about WeChat! At first, it sounded pretty similar to other messaging apps, but the payment option is an interesting feature. Kind of a one-stop shop.

    I can certainly relate to the idea of ‘telephobia’. It is that weird in-between of the impersonal text-message and the obviously personal in-person communication. Not my favourite either.

    You mention how a lot of your training workshops have moved online due to the pandemic. Now that things are slowly returning back to “normal”, is the nature of your job also going to return to mostly the face-to-face format? Or will you move forward with a mix of digital/in person?

    • Echo

      Hi Christina,

      Thank you for your response. Yes, after returning to “normal” post-COVID, some of our programs move back to in-person, but some are still kept virtual, but it’s not about COVID though. It’s more convenient for clients to attend if some programs are online. Interestingly, before the COVID-19 pandemic, we never think of an online workshop, but now it’s an option. Clients sometimes are more prefer the online workshops since they don’t have to go outside especially in winter in SK!


  • Amanpreet

    Thanks for posting about your personal journey for technology. I can relate the differences between the use of technology in home country and Canada. I have a friend from China who uses WeChat and from here I came to know that this app provide multiple features that also includes payments and bookings. I also spend my most of the time on WhatsApp as I talk with my family in India. For me also, face-to-face conversations are more important rather than texting or calling someone.

    • Echo

      Hi Amanpreet,

      Thank you for your response. Different countries have their unique messaging app. Like in China, they don’t have Facebook messenger, Twitter, Whatsapp, etc. Wechat is the main app people are using right now. I recently read a news about Elon Musk is preparing to launch twitter in China (I forgot which news I read). It’s very interesting. I would love to follow up to see how it goes. I can understand why Twitter is banned in China, and there are some challenges I can see when Elon Musk brings twitter in.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

%d bloggers like this: