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Couples hiring ‘love testers’ to check partner’s fidelity in China

Dozens of online companies are providing the service where a woman, or a man, can hire a “love tester” who would then test the partner’s loyalty by attempting to snare the target on cyberspace, a state media report said.

world Updated: Jul 28, 2018 08:59 IST
Sutirtho Patranobis
Sutirtho Patranobis
Hindustan Times, Beijing
love testers,China couples,Partner's fidelity
Online companies in China are providing the service where a woman, or a man, can hire a “love tester” who would then test the partner’s loyalty by attempting to snare the target.(Shutterstock/Representative photo)

Thousands of Chinese couples are paying to recruit fake online rivals to test their partner’s fidelity, a trend that reflects growing anxiety about love and cheating among those in a relationship.

Dozens of online companies are providing the service where a woman, or a man, can hire a “love tester” who would then test the partner’s loyalty by attempting to snare the target on cyberspace, a state media report said.

Once the order is made, the hiring customer needs to furnish personal details about the partner like their name, job, mobile phone number, social media accounts, hobbies and interests.

“Next, the tester will design a series of tricks to start the trap,” the tabloid Global Times said in a report. Chen Mengyuan, a 21-year-old college student who works as a “tester”, explained how the test works.

Under an assumed name, and possibly using enticing photographs, she befriends the partner on social media platforms like WeChat, China’s most popular social media app.

“Using enticing words and attractive (and fake) selfies to seduce men, these testers aim to help customers find out whether their partners are honest.”

“Some results turn out to be good because the men never accept Chen’s friend request on social media,” the report said.

Not everybody, however, passes the test.

“Some couples break up when the test finishes because Chen has successfully seduced disloyal men who agree to come for an appointment or deny that they have girlfriends. Chen sends the whole chat history to customers, showing whether the man is loyal or not,” it added.

On typing “boyfriend loyalty test” on taobao.com – China’s huge e-commerce platform -- dozens of results pop up, costing from 20 yuan ($3) to 1,314 yuan.

Not only women, men also buy the service to check their partner’s loyalty.

“Testing women is more expensive than men, at least 90 yuan, because ‘trapping women is harder than men’,” the report said.

Chen told the newspaper that she believes she is doing something good to help girls recognise bad men.

“I used the service four months ago to test my boyfriend. Later, I applied for the job myself,” she said.

It’s not known whether her boyfriend passed the test.

First Published: Jul 28, 2018 08:58 IST