• Fri
  • Nov 28, 2014
  • Updated: 11:41pm
PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 24 July, 2013, 1:18pm
UPDATED : Wednesday, 24 July, 2013, 5:01pm

Chinese job seekers fall victim to 'Zodiac discrimination'


Amy Li began her journalism career as a crime news reporter in Queens, New York, in 2004. She joined Reuters in Beijing in 2008 as a multimedia editor. Amy taught journalism at Southwestern University of Finance and Economics in Chengdu before joining SCMP in Hong Kong in 2012. She is now an online news editor for SCMP.com. Amy can be reached at chunxiao.li@scmp.com, or follow her on Twitter @AmyLiSCMP

If you are a recent college graduate in China and happen to be a “Virgo”, your chances of getting a job may be much less than your “Gemini” or “Pisces” competitors,  according to the Liaoning-based Bandao Morning News.

Xu Jingmin, a  college graduate and recent victim of such “zodiac discrimination", said she was disheartened after finding out she matched all the qualifications of a job opening at a travel agency except its requirement for the applicant’s zodiac sign.

“We are looking for Geminis, Libras, and Aquarius,” the ad allegedly said. This means Xu, who is a “Leo,” was disqualified.

Stereotypes are also held against  "Virgo" and "Libra" job seekers, who employers believe would be “picky” and jump ship sooner than their peers from other Zodiac signs, according to the report.

Sydney Wen, a manager working in finance industry in Chengdu, said her company has never turned down an applicant because of the person’s zodiac signs. “We have lots of Leo colleagues despite a belief that they are bad tempered,” Wen said.’

“It might be a criteria to consider, but I will not make my decisions based on this alone,” she said.

Terrence Wong, a Hong Kong public relations executive, said employers in Hong Kong - especially those who respect Fung Shui - often secretly refer to applicants’ Chinese zodiacs to decide whether they will get along with them in future.  “But in Hong Kong employers seldom care about employees’ Western zodiac signs,” Wong said.

Wu Tao, a Chengdu-based lawyer, said with the absence of national laws on  non-discrimination and equality at work, it's impossible for applicants to sue potential employers who might have treated them unfairly.

Western astrology is becoming increasingly popular in China in recent years. Websites and newspapers run their own astrology channel, publishing weekly predictions and advice . The trend has also spawned some western astrology experts.  “Naonao Witch,” a popular  zodiacs blogger, now posts daily to hundreds of thousands of loyal followers on Weibo, offering advice on astrology. 


For unlimited access to:

SCMP.com SCMP Tablet Edition SCMP Mobile Edition 10-year news archive



This article is now closed to comments

Talking about being "scientific". After so many years in China I am still regularly upset by all the nonsense here, all the ingrained unscientific attitudes, and even don't try to argue with the Chinese. All ****, sorry guys. Like what women have to observe after giving birth. What you are supposed to drink. Etc. If all that was true we in Belgium would be dead by now. Happens we are better off and we don't need to eat funny medicines to "feel stronger". I really feel pity for those graduates.
Being Chinese, I agree with you in principle when it comes to all those 'unscientific' beliefs. But just to be fair - perhaps these 'funny medicines' as you call them have a placebo effect after all... :) Or better yet, there's so much unknown in the field of medicine - an open mind wouldn't hurt would it? If I were you, I'd try to be more tolerant and respectful towards other cultures and customs, especially if I lived there. I am sure you have your own funny ways in Europe as well. That said, I am not in any way supportive of the discrimination described in this article - it's bizarre and appalling!
Same here newgalileo .. Especially frustrating their genuine belief that they are NOT dogmatic, even with all that you just described (the very definition of dogmatic?). But as you mention already, it is of no use to try to give an argument. :-(


SCMP.com Account