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Aspiring internet stars in China turn to surgery for popularity

Apr 13, 2017 08:53 IST
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Young aspiring internet stars are resorting to plastic surgery to increase their chances of success in the Chinese live-streaming industry. Jing Qi is about to undergo a five-hour rhinoplasty and fat transfer surgery that she hopes will make her look more attractive. The 27-year-old is among tens of thousands hoping for fame as an anchor on a live video streaming platform in China. Appearing on the shows allows her to earn extra money when fans buy her virtual gifts which she then redeems for cash. The surgery is costing Jing 14 and a half thousand US dollars -- ten times her monthly wage. Data from China’s Internet Network Information Center shows some 47 per cent of internet users in China now participate in live streaming. Agents like Deng Jian are trying to capitalise on the billion-dollar industry. His anchor girls work each day round the clock in three shifts in Beijing - sitting in a small anchor booth, flirting with fans and encouraging them to buy gifts.