Shanghai Bloggers is a new app that brings the independent writing talents of Shanghai together in one place. Shanghaiist caught up with the app’s creators, Line and Nando, who shared their vision of blogging in our fair city.
Hi Line and Nando, Thanks for taking the time to chat with us about Shanghai Bloggers! First please tell us a bit about yourselves.
Line: I’m Line, a young professional from Denmark with a passion for health and well-being. So when I moved to Shanghai to do events and learn mandarin, my biggest challenge was not the “big move” or the “culture shock” it was simply beating the pollution, the intense lifestyle and the lack of motivation for being healthy. So I started my own blog, Shanghai Habits, to share my exploration of the healthy scene in Shanghai (running routes, yoga, healthy eateries) as well as share my passion for traveling, as this helps me to stay healthy as well (travel guides for weekend trips as well as longer trips out of Shanghai). I found that blogging was such a perfect way to stay motivated, inspired and to get to know similar minded people in Shanghai. In the last 2 years I’ve become very passionate about blogs and blogging. So, when Nando approached me with his idea for the Shanghai Bloggers app – a tool to make it easier for bloggers to connect with readers in Shanghai and for readers to get all the Shanghai-related blogs from the same source and on-the-go – I was sold.
Nando: I am Colombian and came to Shanghai 2 years ago to start my MBA. I come from the financial sector as I started a Credit Company 5 years ago, which is still running mostly online. After having to hire developers to create the software for this company, I wanted to start learning about programming as sometimes it can be a pain in the ass depending on developers. I am pretty new in this app world as I started learning only a year ago with some online courses in my free time. That’s how this app came to life.
Tell us about the blogs you write.
Line: I have my personal blog www.shanghaihabits.com and then me and Nando have the www.shanghaibloggers.com blog where we post different stuff related to bloggers and blogging in Shanghai. For example, we promote events that Shanghai Bloggers is involved in, we interview the bloggers who are part of the App, and we post our news such as cool App updates.
Nando: Unfortunately I don’t have the talent of writing so I actually don’t blog. But I really enjoy reading blogs, especially since I came to Shanghai.
How did the idea for Shanghai Bloggers come about?
Line: This must be a question for the technical genius behind the app.
Nando: With today’s technology is not a matter of who can speak anymore, it’s a matter of who gets heard. My wife has a blog in Shanghai with great content and as I started digging into other bloggers I found so many great blogs, but it was pretty hard to find them. I wanted to create a single platform that all bloggers in Shanghai could join, making it easy for readers to find them. There is so much great content out there and it should be made easy to find. After meeting with Line we agreed to start working on this project, which has been an amazing adventure, and everyday we come up with new ideas on how to improve it with the help and feedback from bloggers and readers.
Why should bloggers and readers download the Shanghai Bloggers app?
Line: Blogging is such a powerful and interesting way of sharing information. In a melting pot like Shanghai that currently develops with the speed of light, it’s very hard to keep up. Plus, 95% of us who come to Shanghai (from other places in China or from abroad) work so much that we hardly have time to explore: where to eat, where to travel to, where to learn mandarin Chinese, how to deal with the pollution etc. Well, bloggers don’t have more time than most other people, but they find the time. They find time to explore the topics they are passionate about, whether its food, health or fashion. What’s more, they find the time to write in order to share their experiences with other people on their blog. Incredible… Now that Nando and I have gathered almost 50 bloggers (per our new update) forming 7 different categories in the Shanghai Bloggers app, anyone who lives in Shanghai can explore the blogging scene on-the-go in a super easy and fun way. It’s a source for tons of information about Shanghai-related stuff readers are interested in.
Nando: When I arrived in Shanghai, it was sometimes difficult to adapt myself and I felt the need to learn more about this amazing city. Reading blogs is an exciting way to know and learn about Shanghai. There are really good blogs about food, travel, expat life, fashion, healthy lifestyle, art and news which have been carefully selected by our team. It’s a different way to explore the city from other (very curious) people’s point of view, who are basically in the same situation as most of us: living in Shanghai as an expat. The Shanghai Bloggers app makes it very easy for everyone living in Shanghai to find, follow and read their favourite bloggers on a single platform. Read news feeds made by bloggers and also find great deals and promotions from different brands and companies. Plus, it’s free.
What are your future plans for the app?
Line: The Shanghai Bloggers app will become a must-have app and tool for anyone living in Shanghai. One of those things people tell you about when you arrive: this App will make your life here so much easier and so much more fun!
Nando: Help expats to have a great experience whilst being in Shanghai. Focus on having good quality content from blogs. Connect bloggers and readers in a fun and easy way, and be a source of information for all expats who want to make the most of their time in Shanghai.
Download Shanghai Bloggers on the App Store here.
by Daniel Cunningham // Photography by Eric Leleu