Live Streaming: Is It A Possible Way for Cultural Communication in Rural Area? A Case Study of Lei Opera through Kuaishou APP


In current China, live streaming is becoming a fresh and popular way for people to share themselves and lives to the public. Owing to rapidly popularizing mobile internet, easy operation of application and presence of content, live streaming earns widely audiences in China. In a way, it seems closing the distance between people who live in the urban area and the rural area. There comes a question that is it could be applied in cultural communication to narrow the gap between different areas? This lead to our research that we try to discover the reason why live streaming can be accepted by rural people, explore the possibility of cultural communication through live streaming path in rural area and dig out the cultural thinking behind these phenomenon. Based on Technology Acceptance Model and the theory of cultural identity, we will focus on Lei opera, a national Intangible Cultural Heritage in China, which is popular in Leizhou Peninsula for decades in this paper. Influenced by local custom and Lei culture (the traditional culture in Leizhou Peninsula), it shows that this traditional opera is more flourishing in rural area than that in urban area. While, as a traditional ICH item, it can be regarded as a phenomenally cultural case in China. Therefore, we will take a personal-owned troupe as the case study object and collect data from its official ID on Kuaishou APP which is a popular phone application of short video and live streaming in China. We will analyze audiences’  comments including linguistic and non-linguistic comments and activities (like sharing, tipping, liking and so on) on whole live streaming dramas between Nov. 2019 and April 2020 by discourse analysis (Each drama may play several times during this period, but in this research we pick one live broadcast of each drama respectively). We try to find answers to prove live streaming may contribute to communicate local culture in rural area internally and externally through this study.