A university graduate made a detailed WeChat manual to teach his parents how to use the app, which is widely used in Mainland China for communication. The pictures went viral online and touched many netizens, who called him the “good Chinese son.”
Ming Zhang majored in animation at Chongqing University of Posts and Electronics, and is currently working in Beijing. Over the Chinese New Year, he went home to Shandong and bought two smartphones for his parents, hoping they could stay in touch better using WeChat. He did not think it would be hard for them to understand the app, but the learning process proved very challenging. By the end of his 12-day visit, his parents still did not know how to use it.
Zhang said: “I went back to work after Chinese New Year. During the first few days in Beijing, my parents kept calling to ask how to use WeChat. I couldn’t explain properly because I was busy with work. As they were so anxious to figure it out, I finally decided to create a users’ manual for them.”
Zhang’s booklet is nine pages long; each page shows a different aspect of the WeChat interface with comments in various colors explaining the function of each button. On the front page, he drew his own avatar, with an arrow pointing to the words: “This is your son’s account name; click on this button to enter the page and talk to me.”
Zhang didn’t want his parents to feel sad about being unable to figure out the software without their son. The hand-made instructions with fun tips would help them feel like he was still there.
The manual worked amazingly well. Zhang’s parents quickly learned how to use voice messaging and to view pictures in Zhang’s personal space. Whenever they were free, they talked for a bit with their son or left a message on WeChat. When they miss him, they look at the pictures he has uploaded.