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Home  >  Medical Research Archives  >  Issue 149  > Examining Visual Communication in the Context of COVID-19 through Weibo Interactions
Published in the Medical Research Archives
Dec 2023 Issue

Examining Visual Communication in the Context of COVID-19 through Weibo Interactions

Published on Dec 26, 2023




As China's biggest social media platform, Weibo has taken on essential health communication responsibilities during the pandemic. This research takes 105 posters in 15 health-related official Weibo accounts as the analysis objects to explore COVID-19 health information communication and visualisation. First, the interaction between the audiences and Weibo, including forwarding, comments and likes, is statistically analysed. The comments about the information design are extracted manually, and then the sentiment analysis is carried out to verdict audiencesviews about the poster's design. The forwarding and comments are quantified as the attention index for a reference to the degree of likes. In addition, this study also designed an evaluation scale based on the standards of Health Literacy Resources by the Centers for Medicare& Medicaid Services (US). Then designers scored all selected posters one by one. Finally, combining the data of the two parts, concluded that: 1. To a certain extent, people think that the posters do not deliver substantive and practical information; 2. Non-knowledge posters(i.e. cartoon posters) gained more Forwarding and Likes, such as Go, Wuhan poster; 3. The analysis of COVID posters is still mainly picture-oriented, mainly about encouraging people to overcome difficulties; 4. Posters for pandemic prevention usually contain more text and fewer illustrations and do not clearly show cultural differences.

In conclusion, health communication usually involves a lot of professional knowledge, so visualising that knowledge in an accessible way for the general public is challenging. The relevant posters still have the problems of lack of effective communication, superficial design, and insufficient content accessibility.


Author info

Linli Zhang, Zicheng Zhang

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