Deaths at e-commerce giant cause ‘996’ controversy
China is a global leader in the technology industry, and tech companies have grown to become dominant forces in Chinese society. But it also has a dark side.  The death of two employees at the social commerce giant Pinduoduo has placed the spotlight on a culture of high-stress jobs and overwork. Called “996” (meaning working from 9am to 9pm for 6 days per week), many fear the infamous culture has become worse and not better due to pressure from the pandemic. On December 29, 2020, a 22-year-old woman surnamed Zhang, who was working at a new business unit in Urumqi, died. On January 4, another young worker, surnamed Tan, jumped to his death in his hometown of Changsha. Public anger at Pinduod
Tap here to buy the world’s most trafficked mammal
One of China's top online shopping sites has a problem with an endangered scaly mammal. At least a dozen online stores on Pinduoduo, the third-largest Chinese e-commerce platform, have been found to be selling scales from the pangolin, the world’s most trafficked mammal. Sales of raw pangolin scales, which are said in traditional Chinese medicine to reduce swelling and increase lactation and blood circulation, have been banned by China’s State Forestry Administration since 2007, except at designated hospitals and approved pharmaceutical companies. But the South China Morning Post found that the scales of this endangered creature were available on the e-commerce site under the commonly used n
This e-shopping site wants to be the Costco (and Disneyland) of China
Online shopping site Pinduoduo has become the latest Chinese tech firm to launch its IPO. The group-buying platform, which will begin trading on the Nasdaq on Thursday, is set to raise $1.63 billion, making it the second-largest Chinese IPO in the US this year, according to Reuters. It sounds bizarre, but Pinduoduo has vowed in its IPO documents to become a combination of Costco and Disneyland, offering bargains and entertainment alike to its users. Here’s what you need to know about the Chinese e-commerce site. 1. How do you say Pinduoduo? It's pronounced “Pin Dwor Dwor.” In Chinese, “pin” means combine, while “duo” means more. Repeating the “duo” character gives the name a whimsical, appro
The app teaching China to win friends, influence people… and save big
The first time Sun Yuxiu heard of Pinduoduo was at the end of 2017, when her mother asked her to share in a discount deal on tissue packets. By ordering at the same time, they each got 20% off the original price. Since then, Sun, a Beijing-based office worker, has bought everything from live crab to apples on the social commerce platform, combining purchases with her mother and aunt to get discounts. Sun and her relatives are just a few of Pinduoduo’s 300 million paying customers in China, where the concept of social commerce has exploded in popularity over the past two years. Social commerce is a new form of e-commerce which involves social interactions among consumers, who also play a par