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Keeping watch over Wuhan via live streaming

(Xinhua)    15:56, February 27, 2020

BEIJING, Feb. 27 (Xinhua) -- "Need plumbers or electricians?"

"Installing air-conditioners?"

"Having trouble sealing your windows? Maybe I can help."

The messages were left for "Smiley Kangbao," a construction worker who had been live-broadcasting building the Leishenshan Hospital in Wuhan on video-sharing platform Kwai (Kuaishou in Chinese).

Social video-sharing platforms like Kwai, described as capturing life outside China's biggest cities, are providing unique perspectives on how common Chinese support each other, their hometowns and cities like Wuhan during the novel coronavirus outbreak.

Unlike the SARS outbreak nearly two decades ago, smartphones, WiFi and affordable unlimited data plans are now an integral part of daily life.

And unlike traditional social platforms, celebrity accounts and internet influencers are less popular on Kwai. A variety of unembellished user-generated content makes it an authentic place for common Chinese to express and share during hard days.

Kangbao finds live-streaming the most efficient way to recruit workers.

Carpenters, plumbers, painters and electricians left messages, asking if they could do something for Leishenshan Hospital. The next day, they might appear on Kangbao's live-stream.

Laosan is a truck driver from Cangzhou, Hebei Province, more than 1,000 kms from Wuhan.

After posting a video of kissing his son good-bye, he drove non-stop to Wuhan to deliver building materials for Huoshenshan Hospital.

Back at home, Laosan shared how he isolated himself in case he was carrying the virus.

Rong Jian, from Yanxia Village, Jiangsu Province, is known for selling succulent plants via live broadcasts.

He had been broadcasting epidemic prevention work at road checkpoints, village offices and fever-screening sites, calling on villagers to be cautious.

On Feb. 15, Zhu Hong, 39, donated blood at Jinyintan Hospital, from which she was discharged 14 days earlier.

She had been posting videos about her days in hospital and calling on recovered patients to donate blood after learning convalescent plasma proves effective in treating seriously ill COVID-19 patients

Amid the national effort to contain the virus, videos shared by frontline health workers are top hits.

Huang Wei, a doctor from Wuhan, is one of the "myth-busters" on Kwai.

"Can vinegar fumes prevent infection?"

"If alcohol can kill the virus, can drinking strong whisky prevent the COVID-19?"

Huang answered the questions with patience and his followers made him promise to take care and stay well.

Huang always remembers to give useful tips, like ventilation, setting up a buffer area at the entry of an apartment and cleaning cell phones with disinfectant wipes.

"Little Nurses in Camouflage," a group of nurses from Gansu Province, posted a video of arriving in Wuhan on Jan 27.

Last Thursday, a patient said in their broadcast on Kwai: "Thank you for saving me from despair, physically and psychologically."

From daily scenes at makeshift hospitals, to set meals and rest areas, the young nurses urge their families and friends not to worry, with their names and hometowns written on the back of their protective suits.

"May makeshift hospitals go out of business soon," a follower wrote back.

(For the latest China news, Please follow People's Daily on Twitter and Facebook)(Web editor: Zhao Tong, Bianji)

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