Country for PR: China
Contributor: Xinhua News Agency
Monday, November 16 2020 - 21:12
AsiaNet
Across China: Physically challenged share in China's livestreaming boom
LANZHOU, China, Nov. 16, 2020 /Xinhua-AsiaNet/ --

Shi Zaohua, a 29-year-old wheelchair user, has garnered a huge following of 
200,000 fans since finding her niche in livestreaming e-commerce.

One of a growing number of livestreamers, Shi is now fully occupied by China's 
largest annual online shopping event, known as Singles' Day or Double Eleven, 
which fell on Wednesday.

Early in the morning, she prepared for the event and headed to her office in 
the city of Longnan, one of the least developed areas in northwest China's 
Gansu Province.

On her virtual store, she sells local specialties from Sichuan pepper to 
traditional Chinese medicinal materials to customers across the nation.

Shi became wheelchair-bound following a car accident in 2013. Before 
discovering livestreaming, she used to spend her days inside without the 
opportunity to work.

Yet an opportunity came knocking the next year when Longnan native Du Guiying 
returned to her hometown, establishing a farmers' cooperative under the call of 
the local government to promote e-commerce as a means to alleviate poverty in 
rural areas.

Du invited Shi, who can speak standard Mandarin without a regional accent, to 
help manage her online store and advised her to try livestreaming e-commerce.

"I was astonished," Shi said. "I felt nervous when talking to the people around 
me, let alone a live audience."

But Shi finally conquered her fear. In early March, Shi made her successful 
livestreaming debut, selling products worth a total of around 30,000 yuan 
(4,548 U.S. dollars) in one day.

Shi represents a new way of shopping in China, which sweeps retailers into a 
boom of "live commerce" based on the convergence of e-commerce and 
livestreaming.

E-commerce has injected new impetus into people's lives, said Mao Jinhuang, 
professor with the Institute of County Economic Development under Lanzhou 
University, adding that more and more people living deep in the mountains of 
China have benefited from e-commerce and filled their pockets.

Livestreaming has been a big help to physically challenged people like Shi, who 
could have been left behind if not for the new business model.

In Longnan, a total of 366 online stores are now run by people with physical 
disabilities, and jobs have been created for more than 670 such workers.

"E-commerce livestreaming has not only brought us fortune but also dignity and 
hope," said Shi.

Source: The Publicity Department of Longnan Municipality

Image Attachments Links:

   Link: http://asianetnews.net/view-attachment?attach-id=376893

   Caption: Shi Zaohua, a 29-year-old wheelchair user, has garnered a huge 
following of 200,000 fans since finding her niche in livestreaming e-commerce.

Attachments
Shi Zaohua.jpg