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Conde Nast Names Beijing One of the World’s Most Unfriendly Cities

Posted: 08/13/2014 4:31 pm

forbidden city crowdsConde Nast Traveler has recently published the results of a poll that shows Beijing is considered among the world’s most unfriendly cities according to tourists.

The term “unfriendly” isn’t necessarily a reflection of a city’s residents. Instead, it’s a judgment on how accessible and accommodating a city is towards its international tourists. For example, Johannesburg was ranked first because of its high crime rate and “danger of traveling alone”.

Beijing ranks at number six on the list, apparently because of its “terrible pollution” and “dirty streets” that detract from its beautiful attractions. With that, China Daily issued the following post:

worlds unfriendliest cities

Is Beijing the world’s most unfriendly city?
US travel magazine Conde Nast Traveler has published a list of the world’s most unfriendly cities for 2014 upon which Beijing is ranked at number six. The magazine thinks that environmental pollution, traffic congestion and overcrowding are the main reasons for being on the list. The top city on the list is Johannesburg, and there are three well-known romantic French cities on the list: Paris (#4), Marsailles (#4), and Cannes (#2).

As China’s capital, Beijing certainly has its problems. Beijing does have bad air pollution, congested streets and too many people, so it can’t dispute these facts. The contention seems to be over the word “unfriendly”.  Netizens in China, of course, have sounded off over the news:

I don’t understand the meaning of the word “unfriendly”. [tragic.emo]

This list was determined by the Americans themselves, no wonder there aren’t any of their own US cities on this list.

Let’s see you make New York, Los Angeles, and Washington not be congested with traffic!

There really aren’t any US cities listed.

In truth, Beijingers fear important foreigners!! Especially important people who are black!! It’s just that the foreign media doesn’t know this.

Actually, (they) treat foreigners very well.

I’ve never been to Beijing; I support this.

It seems as though this isn’t wrong. In loving our country, we must look at all the facts.

Take a hike, Beijing!

Or, it may be time to accept that Beijing is a terrible place to find yourself at the end of a journey. In May, a survey of 54,000 people by TripAdvisor determined that Beijing is the second-worst travel destination in the world, topped only by Moscow.

The survey ranked cities by the quality of taxi services provided, the helpfulness of locals, and, yes, the friendliness of its residents.

Photo: Jez and Jennie’s


Chengdu Battles Shanghai for “Most Whipped Husbands” in China

Posted: 07/29/2014 2:04 pm

marriage domestic assault love under coercionChinese men don’t always have the best reputation among the ladies, as we reported yesterday in a story on how men fail to match-up with their female counterparts in terms of fashion and hygiene. Now guys are getting hammered again, this time through another survey.

Another question has been vexing China recently, namely: “Which cities’ husbands are more subservient to their wives, Shanghai or Chengdu?” Sichuan Online decided to turn the question into an actual survey that has stoked controversy among Chengdu husbands who are not satisfied with the results.

While details of how the survey was done remain unclear, the results show that 36.8% of respondents said Shanghai while only 31.6% believe Chengdu men are more subservient.

However, Chengdu husbands are apparently not satisfied with their position at #2, despite their apparently familiarity with it. Comments criticizing the survey results include:

Simply can not accept this. We’ve been at it neck and neck with Shanghai men, and we’ve given all of our earnings over (to our wives).
This clearly destroys the image of the Chengdu husband! Could it be?
This is definitely a trick!

marriage domestic assault love under coercion

A ranking of cities by how afraid husbands are of their wives begins with Shanghai, and is followed by Chengdu, Wuhan and Chaozhou. But one Chengdu male said they are simply misunderstood:

This isn’t called ‘being afraid of one’s wife’, but ‘loving one’s wife’.

The meek behaviour among men around their wives or girlfriends comes from the phrase “burning ear”. It is used to describe when a wife punishes her husband by twisting his ear, but the husband remains too afraid to use physical force against his wife so quietly accepts his punishment.

There were other questions as part of the survey, too. One was: “Are Chengdu husbands willing to allow themselves to be coerced by their wives with the public fully knowing the extent of their emasculation?” Twenty-six percent answered “yes”, 15.8% said “no”, while 57.9% said husbands are willing to be coerced by their wives, but only in private.

When asked why this is a particular phenomenon in Chengdu, 20.8% of respondents said that “Chengdu women have a spicy attitude”, 20.8% said “Chengdu men are mild and amenable”, while 29.2% stated, “This is a modern trend.”

If this is a modern trend, we wonder where people get the idea that domestic abuse within a marriage is acceptable, or even humorous.

hui tai lang hong tai lang

He’s holding a yellow rose and saying, “I love frying pans.”

Photos: meilishuo, media.163news.tigercity


“Are Chinese Men Suitable For Chinese Women?”

Posted: 07/28/2014 5:37 pm

chinese couples match men women fashion hygieneAs appealing as the darkest corners of the internet may be to netizens, news media have always remained above the lurid and sensational by remaining impartial and loyal to the truth. But when a topic online gets enough attention, news media are forced to look at the question more seriously.

Back on June 9, user “I am a Senior Snack Food” made a post on the Tianya forums titled: “Right now on the streets of Shanghai, it is very clear that the women are one class higher than the men.” He published the pictures seen here, and asserted that:

Women are more beautiful, while you can tell the men are losers at one glance.


The men are all dogs that are either unattractive mongrels or whipped puppies with their tails between their legs: there isn’t one among them that gives you any confidence. On the other hand, women have bettered themselves over and over.

chinese couples match men women fashion hygieneOver 800,000 hits later, this topic of conversation has crossed over to Weibo. Chinese netizens continue to debate the very important question of our time: “Are Chinese men suitable for Chinese women?”

Passionate discourse about this leading social issue includes sentiments like these (from the original post):

The reason is clear: some women are carrying brand name handbags, while some men are helping (them) carry clothes and purses.

The woman is so beautiful, but the man is clearly a loser.

How are you aware of these men’s hidden talents and capabilities?

I’ve long since discovered this to be true. It’s the same in Wuxi as well.

chinese couples match men women fashion hygiene

Yimobaby: (referring to the above image)
Shanghai girls have always been pretty.

lebao2030: (responding to above)
People, this is called “make-up”! This isn’t natural beauty; if you don’t believe me, ask them to try going without wearing make-up! Shanghai women need to put on make-up before going outside! I’ve lived in Shanghai for five years during which I’ve had Shanghainese friends.

chinese couples match men women fashion hygiene辣妹子啦啦啦:
This is pretty much true. I had previously gone to South Korea and had posted pictures of Korean pedestrians. Everyone theorized that they are all made-up. Women of Chinese first and second-tiered major cities have already attained the same level of fashion as that of Seoul, however, there is a huge, significant difference with the men. If Chinese men won’t pay any attention to improving their looks, then forget it; many of them aren’t even capable of maintain basic hygiene.

survey Chinese men match women

But while netizens argue, the Guangzhou Daily has tackled the question by conducting a survey. The paper asked 1,259 people (487 men and 772 women) this question: do you agree or disagree with the statement “Chinese men don’t look as good as Chinese women”? It turns out 56% of women agree while 68% of men disagree.

survey Chinese men match women

The survey also asked how much a man should spend on making himself “look better”. Again, the difference between the sexes is stark. Almost 87% of male respondents said zero to 20% of their income should be allocated to looking better, while only 43% of women suggested such a small amount should be spent. Thirty-seven percent of women said men should be spending 20 to 40% of their entire income on looking better.

With such a vast difference of opinion between Chinese men and women, we’re not sure how the two sexes can reach a consensus and get married.

Here’s some more pictures of couples below. What do you think?

chinese couples match men women fashion hygienechinese couples match men women fashion hygienechinese couples match men women fashion hygienechinese couples match men women fashion hygienechinese couples match men women fashion hygienePhotos: Tianya, Guangzhou Daily


Shocking Child Abuse Case and Surprising Attitudes Both Surface in Guangzhou

Posted: 05/15/2014 4:16 pm

heyuan child abuse

[This story may have content that some readers may find disturbing]

On May 14, photos of a ten year-old boy from Heyuan, Guangdong showed bruising and scars all across his body from being physically abused by his step-mother surfaced.

On the very same day, a published survey revealed only 37.5% of its Guangzhou respondents believe beating a child constitutes domestic violence.

We’re not sure which news to be more shocked at, so we’re going to talk about them both.

Binbin’s abuse was reported by a homeroom teacher that saw a bruise on his face. For years, Binbin had been beaten by his stepmother once or twice a week, first with fists and then with clothes hangers. Despite the abuse, authorities could only force the step-mother to take classes, and having failed that, they could take criminal action against her.

Meanwhile, for the past four years, an average of 500 domestic abuse cases have been reported each year in the province, many not unlike Binbin’s case, according to a survey done by Sun Yat-sen University and the Women’s Federation of Guangzhou. Despite the abuse, there are only available six shelters in the province that offer protection, and they have only provided assistance to 17 women and children over the last two years.

Here is what Feng Yuan, co-founder of the Anti-Domestic Violence Network, told the Global Times:

There is no legal framework for public institutions like schools and hospitals to report child abuse…The nation has yet to deprive a single abusive parent of guardianship or to exercise national guardianship to guarantee the best interests of children.

Here’s a fact for you: 100% of me is disgusted, outraged, and saddened, but perhaps not in that order. heyuan child abuseheyuan child abuse

Photos: Southern Metropolis Report via Weibo


New Case of Avian Flu Reported Despite Plans to Ban Live Chicken Markets

Posted: 05/5/2014 3:41 pm

While Guangzhou implements its frozen chicken program that will phase out live poultry markets in the city, the Guangdong Provincial Health and Family Planning Commission confirmed a new infection of the H7N9 virus yesterday, reported Dongguan News.

The patient is a 53 year-old woman from Luohu District in Shenzhen named Zhong. She was diagnosed with avian flu on May 1. Zhong has suffered from bronchitis for 20 years.

Meanwhile, the latest fatality from avian flu is a patient named Gu from Heyuan, who contracted the H7N9 virus on April 9. Gu succumbed to the illness on April 21.

The last report of an avian flu outbreak in Guangdong happened on April 20 when the health commission reported a positive diagnosis of the disease in a patient named Wang, a 55 year-old woman from Shantou. Prior to that, Guangdong experienced an outbreak of five avian flu cases at the beginning of April throughout the province.

Meanwhile, a case from March has a victim’s family blaming the hospital for negligence. A Dongguan man contracted a fever and died four days after coming into contact with live poultry, but to the family’s dismay, the hospital refused to categorize his illness as avian flu. In related developments, online rumors that a Shenzhen doctor contracted and died from contracting avian flu have been denied by the Shenzhen Health and Family Planning Commission.

As we previously reported, the newest measure to help safeguard against an avian flu outbreak is the closing of live poultry markets in Guangzhou in favor of a centralized slaughterhouse that will instead ship out frozen chickens for consumption. However, a survey revealed that many city residents are opposed to the ban38 percent of residents are not in favor of closing the live poultry markets, while 66 percent believe that frozen chicken will compromise the taste and flavor of cooked chicken dishes.

Photo: 3158

Shenzhen Man Confirmed with Avian Flu, Now in Stable Condition
3 Year-Old Boy in Dongguan Diagnosed with H7N9
Bird Flu Which Killed Shenzhen Man Can’t Be Transmitted Between Humans


Surprise: survey shows poor people in Guangzhou are miserable

Posted: 12/9/2011 2:21 pm

Shoppers are happy, at least. (Photo from

We like these happiness surveys in China that seem to come out every few months. Usually, they aim to figure out who’s the happiest in China based on city.  The survey that came out this week, however, took a closer look at happiness in relation to income.  And we highly doubt anybody will be surprised by the results.

The Guangzhou Public Opinion Research Centre found that a vast majority (81%) of high-income earners in Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou are satisfied when it comes to “realizing their personal values”, while only 18% of low-income earners said the same. (And one thought personal values were income agnostic).

What made people unhappy differed in the three cities, however:

Beijingers were the least satisfied with their individual income, public transportation and health care. Residents of Shanghai and Guangzhou said they were the most discontent with health care.

No doubt transportation is a horrific problem in Beijing (did nobody mention air pollution?), but it’s interesting to see that healthcare is a problem for many in Guangzhou.

The survey results aren’t exactly unexpected, but they are still problematic for policymakers: poor people aren’t happy, and there are a lot more poor people in China than rich ones.

That wealth gap and polarization of the high and low income groups will need to be addressed soon.  Wang Wenjun, the Executive Director of the Guangzhou Public Opinion Research Center, said ”The indexes of the survey were designed to study the feelings of individuals. But the need to improve public services is urgent.”


Some Chinese perplexed, confused by laowai: survey

Posted: 02/22/2011 10:18 am

We all know this anyway, but now it’s finally been confirmed in a survey of 161,000 Chinese people in Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou and Shenzhen: Chinese people who work alongside laowai find them confusing, and their jokes unfunny. The report comes to us courtesy of EastDay:

About one third of the people taking part in the survey said they had difficulty communicating with their foreign colleagues.

Kiki Liu, a secretary with a Hong Kong-based logistics company, said she was bemused by a British colleague’s jokes.

“He loved to tell jokes, but I found most of them to be not funny at all,” she said. “I thought it impolite if I showed no response, so every time I just laughed stiffly.”

Cecelie Cui, a customs service employee for a computer company, said an Indian colleague insisted on describing simple things in a complicated way. “He is a nice man and is sweet to everyone, but often I don’t know what point he’s making,” said Cui.

The good news is that most Chinese said foreigners brought “something unique” to the company. There’s no doubt that laowai often complain about being misunderstood or not understanding their Chinese colleagues, so it’s clear the miscommunication goes both ways.

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