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Innovation helps conquer boredom at home

2020-2-14 15:38

 

With plenty of time at home on his hands during the extended Spring Festival break, Leng Yang came up with an innovative idea involving the use of shells from popular Lunar New Year snacks such as pistachios and almonds, along with sunflower seeds.

 

The 30-year-old designer from Weifang, Shandong province, spent three days making a figure of Mickey Mouse. A video of him putting the artwork together has been viewed more than 100 million times online.

 

Leng said on the video: "Give shells a new lease on life. Salute to the Year of the Rat," adding that he decided to make the figure in an attempt to beat boredom.

 

He was unable to meet friends over Spring Festival due to the novel coronavirus pneumonia outbreak, but chose to share his work with millions of netizens on social media platforms such as Sina Weibo and Douyin.

 

Inspired by his efforts, many kindergarten students have been asked by their teachers to use shells to create such figures.

 

Leng is not the only one to come up with creative ways to pass the time during the outbreak.

 

Cheng Dadu, from Xi'an, Shaanxi province, who enjoys running marathons, posted footage on Weibo of himself running barefoot for 10 hours in his living room. Since Jan 30, he has run about 100 kilometers every day indoors.

 

"Staying at home and keeping healthy are the best ways to fight the virus," he said.

 

As of Wednesday, the hashtag "Innovative ways to combat boredom at home" had been viewed more than 300 million times on Weibo.

 

As people have had limited contact with friends and neighbors, the use of cyberspace has surged.

 

As former Morgan Stanley employee Duncan Clark writes in his book Alibaba: The House That Jack Ma Built, "SARS validated digital mobile telephony and the internet, and so came to represent the turning point when the internet emerged as a truly mass medium in China."

 

In 2003, when the outbreak of severe acute respiratory syndrome in China had been brought under control, e-commerce platforms Taobao and JD were launched along with Tencent's QQ Game. They all grew to become internet giants.

 

Industry experts estimate that the ongoing outbreak will result in another internet boom.

 

On Feb 3, at a news conference on the economic impact of the outbreak, Lian Weiliang, vice-minister of the National Development and Reform Commission, said, "Online entertainment and shopping remain very active."

 

Wang Jianhui, a media and internet analyst at Cinda Securities, said," During the outbreak, the online entertainment sector-dominated by games and streaming services-has seen a welcome boom."

 

In addition to the lockdown in Wuhan, Hubei province, the epicenter of the outbreak, the central government has imposed preventive measures in metropolitan areas such as Beijing and Shanghai as well as other populous areas. Public celebrations nationwide have been canceled.

 

With the government suggesting that people stay at home to avoid further spreading the virus, lifestyles have moved increasingly from offline to online.

 

In June, the number of netizens in China reached 854 million, accounting for 61.2 percent of the population, according to a report from the China Internet Network Information Center.

 

Online games

 

Online games and streaming apps have seen millions of views and downloads as demand for home entertainment has soared.

 

According to Tencent Games, Honor of Kings earned about 2 billion yuan ($288 million)-a record high-on Jan 24, Lunar New Year's Eve. Industry experts estimate that the game made more than 9 billion yuan last month due to the increasing number of participants and longer playing times during the outbreak.

 

The strategy game Plague Inc., from the United Kingdom, went viral after the outbreak. Since Jan 21, it has been one of China's most downloaded apps, according to mobile data and analytics platform App Annie.

 

Developed in 2012 by Ndemic Creation, the game demonstrates how a pathogen evolves and infects people.

 

In 2013, James Vaughan, the game's developer, said it can serve "as a tool to teach the public about outbreaks and disease transmission."

 

Last month, the game generated 78,000 downloads, up from 16,000 in December, according to market analyst Sensor Tower.

 

One player commented," I learned a lot from playing the game, including how the virus spreads and the measures that can be taken to better prevent and contain the epidemic."

 

Amid a surge in players, Ndemic Creations has reminded them that Plague Inc. is not a "scientific model" and that people wanting information on the outbreak should obtain it from health authorities.

 

"Many students played the game over the extended Spring Festival break," said Li Ding, a college teacher in Shenyang, Liaoning province, adding that she spent more than five hours on the internet each day.

 

In an attempt to stop large numbers of people gathering, officials have banned outdoor games of mahjong, chess and cards and have used drones for virus patrols. As a result, demand for online games has surged.

 

According to online data service provider Qimai Technology, since Jan 27, Tencent's Happy Mahjong has remained in top place in the download rankings for chess and card games, followed by Fight the Landlord, a card game also developed by Tencent.

 

An ad from the company reads: "Less outings, more company. Join us and play mahjong and cards with friends at home."

 

To attract users, special free online rooms opened for Happy Mahjong and Fight the Landlord from Feb 1 to Feb 9.

 

Zhao Kun, a Shanghai insurance agent, said: "My screen time recently has exceeded 12 hours a day. There's nothing I can do, but play games, binge-watch and surf the internet."

 

Video platforms

 

In addition to online games, demand has risen for video apps as sources of entertainment and information.

 

With movie theaters nationwide closed due to the outbreak, on Jan 24, Lost in Russia became the first Chinese film intended for theatrical release to premiere online. It debuted for free on Huanxi Media's streaming service and on platforms owned by ByteDance.

 

Directed by and starring Xu Zheng, the comedy was due to be released in theaters on Jan 25. It portrays the journey through Russia of a manipulative mother and her middle-aged son who wants to rebel and escape her smothering influence.

 


According to a stock exchange filing, ByteDance has agreed to pay Huanxi Media 630 million yuan to stream the movie and to later jointly launch a film channel.

 

Data from App Annie show that weekly downloads on ByteDance's Xigua video app rose by 77 percent from Jan 20 to Jan 26.

 

According to digital marketing agency Techweb, in the three days after it debuted, Lost in Russia notched up some 600 million views and was watched by more than 180 million households.

 

Many viewers commented: "Thank you very much, I owe you a movie ticket."

 

ByteDance has been streaming longer content, with the addition of 13 movies from Huanxi Media across its platforms.

 

Enter the Fat Dragon was the second film after Lost in Russia to be released on streaming platforms during Spring Festival, debuting on Feb 1.

 

According to its production company, Bona Film Group, the Hong Kong action movie premiered on streaming sites iQiyi and Tencent Video. Starring Donnie Yen, it was scheduled to hit theaters on Feb 16.It is available on iQiyi and Tencent Video's subscriber-only VIP Early-Access on-Demand service.

 

The movie has been viewed more than 40 million times on Tencent Video.

 

Although people confined to home have embraced online streaming, theater owners and studios have voiced concern that the trend could have a significant impact on China's film sector. They said this could be comparable to the "disruption" brought to Hollywood by Netflix, which has resulted in new productions skipping theatrical release and going straight to streaming.

 

Lessons livestreamed

 

Many universities and other academic institutions have been livestreaming lessons, while video apps, such as Bilibili, Kuaishou and Douyin, plan to offer a range of classes to the public.

 

From Feb 3 to 7, Tsinghua University livestreamed five open classes on Douyin, covering international relations, public speaking, traditional culture, interpersonal relations and dance appreciation.

 

An open lecture given on Feb 5 by Yan Xuetong, director of The Institute of International Studies at Tsinghua University, attracted about 160,000 viewers. Since the novel coronavirus outbreak, Yan has analyzed reaction from the international community.

 

On Feb 5, Peking University launched open classes on Douyin and Bilbili.

 

Coronavirus-related searches and hashtags have topped trending lists on Douyin and Kuaishou. Both apps have launched channels devoted to virus-related news, live updates and expert analysis.

 

Xie Bin, an expert at the Shanghai Mental Health Center, suggested that people should avoid searching for information about the virus, which could increase their anxiety levels.

 

Fitness apps

 

The closure of gyms across the country has seen exercise addicts turn to fitness apps, with classes being livestreamed.

 

Mobile fitness community Keep used Douyin to broadcast its classes online, hosting three livestreaming sessions a day. Although the classes are free to view, the Keep instructor asks participants make comments and "like" the broadcasts.

 

Sun Feifei, an information technology engineer in Beijing, said she followed the classes every day during the Spring Festival holiday. "Exercise is part of my life, no matter what happens. Thanks to the internet, I can watch Keep classes at home during self-quarantine," she said.

 

On Jan 27, digital fitness and wellness brand Lefit launched a public exercise campaign. In cooperation with short video platforms, including Kuaishou and Douyin, the fitness startup, based in Hangzhou, Zhejiang province, has uploaded more than 16,000 video clips to instruct people on exercising at home. The clips have been viewed more than 270 million times.

 

On Jan 30, the General Administration of Sport of China issued a notice, calling on sports departments at all levels to promote "simple and scientific" exercises at home, introduce "fitness knowledge" and advocate healthy lifestyles via television and the internet during the epidemic.

 

Some leading athletes, including former diving champion Gao Min, swimmer Sun Yang and ultra-marathon runner Chen Penbin have posted videos on social media showing their workout routines and offering advice for those exercising at home.

 

In her video, Gao said people can "gain strength from sports to overcome the pandemic".

 

To combat boredom at home, people nationwide are becoming increasingly creative, with videos posted on social media ranging from footage of fishing in an indoor tank to playing ping pong on a dining table.

 

Cao Qian, a librarian in Yantai, Shandong, used water bottles as quoits to play with her 7-year-old daughter.

 

"The game had all the family laughing, which I will long remember after all we have gone through," Cao said.

 

A video on Weibo showed patients with mild symptoms of the virus dancing at a temporary hospital in Wuhan on Feb 10.

 

Yan Hao, a doctor at the hospital, who is encouraging patients to take part in dancing to relieve their anxiety, said: "Confidence is our 'sunshine'. It is important to help the patients to build their confidence and defeat the disease."

 

On Tuesday evening, many thousands of people nationwide discovered a novel form of entertainment when the Broom Challenge went viral on Chinese social media platforms. Netizens posted pictures and video footage of brooms standing upright, unaided.

 

The participants were responding to a rumor that NASA had said that Feb 11 was the only day the standing broom trick would work, because the Earth was at a perfect tilt. They spent many hours making brooms stand up unaided.

 

Gu Yanfeng, 41, a mother of two in Beijing who posted pictures on WeChat Moments of a broom standing up, said, "I didn't believe it at first, but it really did happen."

 

NASA later took to social media, stating, "There's no 'special gravity' that only affects brooms, but the moon's gravity creates tides on Earth."

春节长假期间,他有很多时间在家,冷阳想出了一个创新的点子,用开心果、杏仁等受欢迎的春节零食和葵花籽来做壳。


这位来自山东省潍坊市的30岁设计师花了三天时间,制作了一个米老鼠形象。他制作这些艺术品的视频在网上已经被观看了超过1亿次。


冷锋在视频中说:“给贝壳一个新的生命。向鼠年致敬。”他补充说,他决定画这个人物是为了摆脱无聊。


由于新型冠状病毒肺炎爆发,他无法在春节期间与朋友见面,但他选择在新浪微博和抖音等社交媒体平台上与数百万网民分享他的作品。


受到他的启发,许多幼儿园的老师要求学生用贝壳来创作这样的人物。


冷峰并不是唯一一个在疫情爆发期间想出创造性方法来打发时间的人。


来自陕西省西安市的程大度(音译)喜欢跑马拉松,他在微博上发布了自己赤脚在客厅跑10个小时的视频。从1月30日开始,他每天在室内跑大约100公里。


他说:“呆在家里保持健康是对抗病毒的最好方法。”


截至周三,新浪微博上“用创新的方式打发无聊在家”这一话题已经被浏览了3亿多次。


由于人们与朋友和邻居的联系有限,网络空间的使用激增。


正如摩根士丹利(Morgan Stanley)前雇员邓肯•克拉克(Duncan Clark)在其著作《阿里巴巴:马云建造的房子》(Alibaba: The House That Jack Ma Built)中所写的那样,“非典验证了数字移动电话和互联网的有效性,并因此成为互联网成为中国真正大众媒体的转折点。”


2003年,当中国的严重急性呼吸系统综合症(sars)疫情得到控制时,电子商务平台淘宝(Taobao)和京东(JD)与腾讯(Tencent)的QQ游戏一起上线。他们都成长为互联网巨头。


行业专家估计,目前的疫情爆发将导致另一场互联网热潮。


2月3日,国家发展和改革委员会副主任连为良在新闻发布会上表示,“网络娱乐和购物仍然非常活跃。”


信达证券的媒体和互联网分析师王建辉表示:“在病毒爆发期间,以游戏和流媒体服务为主的在线娱乐行业迎来了受欢迎的繁荣。”


除了疫情中心湖北省武汉市的封锁外,中央政府还在北京、上海等大城市以及其他人口稠密地区实施了预防措施。全国范围内的公共庆祝活动被取消。


随着政府建议人们呆在家里以避免病毒的进一步传播,人们的生活方式越来越多地从线下转移到线上。


据中国互联网络信息中心的一份报告显示,今年6月,中国网民人数达到8.54亿,占总人口的61.2%。


在线游戏


随着家庭娱乐需求的飙升,在线游戏和流媒体应用的浏览量和下载量已达数百万。


根据腾讯游戏的数据,《王者荣耀》在1月24日(除夕)的票房达到了20亿元人民币(约合2.88亿美元),创历史新高。业内专家估计,由于参与人数的增加和爆发期间游戏时间的延长,该游戏上个月的收入超过了90亿元。


来自英国的战略游戏瘟疫公司在病毒爆发后迅速走红。根据移动数据分析平台App Annie的数据,自1月21日以来,它一直是中国下载量最大的应用之一。


2012年由Ndemic创意公司开发的这款游戏演示了病原体是如何进化并感染人类的。


2013年,该游戏的开发者詹姆斯·沃恩(James Vaughan)表示,它可以“作为一种工具,让公众了解疾病的爆发和传播”。


根据市场分析师Sensor Tower的数据,这款游戏上个月的下载量为7.8万次,高于去年12月的1.6万次。


一名玩家评论道:“我从这个游戏中学到了很多,包括病毒是如何传播的,以及可以采取哪些措施来更好地预防和控制疫情。”


随着玩家人数的激增,Ndemic Creations提醒他们鼠疫公司不是一个“科学模型”,想要了解疫情信息的人应该从卫生当局那里获得。


辽宁沈阳的一位大学老师李丁(音译)说:“春节长假期间,很多学生都在玩这款游戏。”她还补充道,她每天上网超过5个小时。


为了阻止大量人群聚集,官员们禁止户外麻将、象棋和纸牌游戏,并使用无人机进行病毒巡逻。因此,对网络游戏的需求激增。

 

根据在线数据服务提供商奇迈科技的数据,自1月27日以来,腾讯的快乐麻将在国际象棋和纸牌游戏的下载排名中一直高居榜首,紧随其后的是腾讯开发的纸牌游戏《斗地主》。


该公司的一则广告是这样写的:“少出去玩,多陪伴。”和我们一起在家里和朋友们打麻将和打牌。”


为了吸引用户,从2月1日到2月9日,开心麻将和斗地主将开设特别免费的在线房间。


上海一位名叫赵坤的保险代理人说:“最近我每天看电视的时间已经超过了12个小时。除了玩游戏、刷剧和上网,我什么都做不了。”


视频平台


除了网络游戏,视频应用作为娱乐和信息来源的需求也在上升。


1月24日,《迷失俄罗斯》成为第一部在网上首映的中国电影。它在环西传媒的流媒体服务和字节跳动旗下的平台上免费发布。


这部由徐峥执导、主演的喜剧将于1月25日在各大影院上映。它描绘了一个控制欲强的母亲和她的中年儿子穿越俄罗斯的旅程,他们想要反抗并逃离她令人窒息的影响。

 

根据一份提交给证券交易所的文件,字节跳动已经同意支付给环西传媒6.3亿元人民币来播放这部电影,并在之后共同推出一个电影频道。


来自App Annie的数据显示,从1月20日到1月26日,字节跳动公司的Xigua视频应用每周下载量增长了77%。


据数字营销机构Techweb的数据,《迷失俄罗斯》在首播后的三天内,浏览量达到了6亿次,观看人数超过1.8亿户。


许多观众评论道:“非常感谢,我欠你一张电影票。”


字节跳动已经在其平台上增加了13部来自环西传媒的电影。


《龙争虎斗》是继《迷失俄罗斯》之后,第二部于春节期间在流媒体平台上上映的电影,将于2月1日首映。


据其制作公司博纳影业(Bona Film Group)称,这部香港动作片在流媒体网站爱奇艺(iQiyi)和腾讯视频(Tencent Video)上首映。该片由甄子丹主演,计划于2月16日上映。它可以在爱奇艺和腾讯视频的VIP早期点播服务上使用。


这部电影在腾讯视频上的点击量已经超过了4000万次。


虽然在家的人们已经接受了在线流媒体,但影院老板和电影公司表示担心,这种趋势可能会对中国电影行业产生重大影响。他们表示,这可以与Netflix给好莱坞带来的“颠覆”相提并论,后者导致新作品跳过院线直接进入流媒体。


liverstream教训


许多大学和其他学术机构已经在直播课程,而视频应用程序,如哔哩哔哩、快手和抖音,计划向公众提供一系列课程。


2月3日至7日,清华大学在抖音上直播了五场公开课,内容涉及国际关系、公共演讲、传统文化、人际关系和舞蹈欣赏。


2月5日,清华大学国际问题研究所所长阎学通的公开讲座吸引了约16万名观众。自从新型冠状病毒爆发以来,严分析了国际社会的反应。


2月5日,北京大学推出了抖音和Bilbili公开课。


与冠状病毒相关的搜索和话题标签在抖音和快手上占据了热门榜单的首位。这两个应用程序都推出了与病毒相关的新闻、实时更新和专家分析的频道。


上海精神卫生中心的专家谢斌建议,人们应该避免搜索有关该病毒的信息,因为这可能会增加他们的焦虑水平。


健身应用程序


全国各地的健身房关闭后,健身爱好者转而使用健身应用,课程被直播。


移动健身社区使用抖音在线直播课程,每天直播三次。尽管课程是免费的,但Keep的指导老师要求参与者对广播进行评论和“点赞”。


孙菲菲是北京的一名信息技术工程师,她说春节期间她每天都去上课。“不管发生什么,锻炼都是我生活的一部分。多亏了互联网,我可以在自我隔离期间在家观看Keep classes。”


1月27日,数字健身和健康品牌Lefit发起了一场公众健身运动。与快手、抖音等短视频平台合作,这家位于浙江省杭州市的健身初创公司已经上传了16000多段视频短片,指导人们在家锻炼。这些视频已经被观看了超过2.7亿次。

 

1月30日,国家体育总局发布通知,要求各级体育部门在艾滋病流行期间,提倡在家进行“简单、科学”的运动,介绍“健康知识”,并通过电视和互联网倡导健康的生活方式。


包括前跳水冠军高敏、游泳运动员孙杨和超马拉松运动员陈斌在内的一些主要运动员在社交媒体上发布了视频,展示他们的锻炼习惯,并为在家锻炼的人提供建议。

 


在吉林省长春市,一位体育老师在家里开了一个在线课程。张燕石/中国日报记者


在她的视频中,高表示,人们可以“从体育运动中获得力量来战胜流行病”。


为了应对家里的无聊,全国各地的人们变得越来越有创意,他们在社交媒体上发布各种视频,从在室内鱼缸里钓鱼到在餐桌上打乒乓球,不一而足。


山东烟台的图书管理员曹倩(音译)用水瓶当绳套和她7岁的女儿玩耍。


曹说:“这场比赛让所有的家人都笑了,在我们经历了这么多之后,我将永远记得。”


2月10日,微博上的一段视频显示,症状轻微的患者在武汉一家临时医院跳舞。


医院的医生闫浩鼓励患者参加舞蹈活动来缓解焦虑,他说:“自信是我们的‘阳光’。帮助病人建立信心和战胜疾病是很重要的。”


周二晚上,“扫把挑战”在中国社交媒体平台上疯传,全国数千人发现了一种新奇的娱乐方式。网民们上传了一些照片和视频,显示扫帚是独立直立的。


有传言称,美国宇航局曾表示,由于地球处于绝对倾斜状态,2月11日是唯一一个站着扫把的日子。他们花了很多时间让扫帚自己站起来。


41岁的顾艳峰(音译)是两个孩子的母亲,她在微信的朋友圈里贴出了自己站起来的照片。


美国国家航空航天局后来在社交媒体上表示,“没有只影响扫帚的‘特殊重力’,但月球的重力在地球上创造了潮汐。”

 

 

 

原作者: WANG QIAN 来自: china daily global