Spiderman pay-for-Valentine stunt mocked in China

Live-streaming hosts get little love when they offer themselves as stand-in partners in Beijing

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 29 August, 2017, 1:51pm
UPDATED : Tuesday, 29 August, 2017, 4:51pm

Two enterprising Chinese live-streaming hosts failed to impress passers-by in Beijing by charging for kissing, hugging and hand-holding services on China’s equivalent of Valentine’s Day.

A man, dressed up as Spiderman and his female co-host tried to make money by offering to act as stand-in love interests on Monday, which marked this year’s Qixi Festival.

The festival, which falls on the seventh day of the seventh lunar month, celebrates a romantic folk tale.

As part of a video programme produced for the festival, the pair set up banners in the entertainment district of Sanlitun to promote their dating services and prices. A hug cost three yuan (45 US cents), a kiss seven yuan and helping people show off in front of ex-lovers cost 77 yuan a time.

Customers were also charged seven yuan for 15 minutes to watch movies with the hosts, but ghost movies were banned, the banners said.

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The hosts were live-streaming the activity on a video website, although they appeared to have got little business.

“I didn’t even make 20 yuan,” the male host said on his Weibo social media page.

Photographs of the duo, widely circulated on Chinese social media, were ridiculed by internet users.

“No one wants you even for free, how can you expect people to pay?” said one of the most popular comments on Weibo.