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  • Chris McMillan

Livestreamer turns 'failure' into a rural success story

China Daily

30th September 2023

Livestreamer turns 'failure' into a rural success story

Mu Sa, a livestream host of the Hui ethnic group from Zhongning, Ningxia Hui autonomous region, epitomizes how the internet has transformed many young unemployed people into useful talents contributing to society.

After graduating from the Lanzhou-based Northwest Minzu University majoring in sociology, Mu worked as an office clerk in Shanghai, a marketing assistant in Beijing and a data analyst in Hangzhou.

Each time he struggled to realize his dream in big cities. However, Mu at last found that what touched him most was the "feathery tenderness" of homesickness, as he described it.

Mu returned home at 25 after losing his job during the COVID-19 pandemic in November 2021.

Depressed, Mu, who has moderate hearing impairment caused by a fever at the age of 10, thought of himself a "failure" at first. Leaving their village had been a goal for all rural children of his generation.

However, he was not deterred by his difficulties and quickly lifted himself up. Mu decided to pick up his cell phone and begin creating short videos about local people's daily lives at home and uploading them online.

A video clip showing his mother cooking local food turned out to be a surprise hit.

Even his mother was shocked that so many viewers, who commented that the video evoked memories of their own moms and hometowns, could be interested in a daily routine.

Mu said it was the success of this video clip that inspired him to carry on. He gradually found that village-related content was popular among his followers.

"The more local the content, the more universal its appeal is," he said.

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