Nation refrains from entertainment at day of mourning COVID-19 victims

By GT staff reporters Source:Global Times Published: 2020/4/4 20:00:03 Last Updated: 2020/4/4 23:25:41

Medical workers pay a silent tribute to martyrs who died in the fight against the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak and compatriots died of the disease in Wuhan, central China's Hubei Province, April 4, 2020. (Xinhua/Cai Yang)

As China holds a national day of mourning on Saturday to commemorate victims of the COVID-19, network game providers, livestreaming channels and online video platforms suspended entertainment services, with many netizens welcoming the move since people need an opportunity to express their condolences to the victims over the more than two months.

Government organs, news agencies and Chinese embassies around the world all changed their websites and profile photos on social media to black and white to express condolences. 

The major online game service providers in China such as Netease and Tencent all suspended their services on Saturday. 

An employee with the cultural and entertainment group Perfect World confirmed to Global Times on Saturday that all its game services in the Chinese mainland, Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan have been suspended. 

He believes that it is necessary to suspend games on the memorial day to extend condolences to families of the deceased.

The company's website has also turned to black and white as a memorial on Saturday.

Video platforms including iQIYI and Youku stopped updating entertainment programs. Some TV channels also suspended streaming entertainment TV shows. TV channels for dramas, including in Beijing, Zhejiang and Jiangsu will reportedly  temporarily stop airing some TV plays. 

Many netizens support the suspension and also voluntarily changed their social media profile to gray pictures to express condolences. 

"For us, it is just a day without games and TV shows. But for those who have lost their beloved ones to the outbreak, this is a day of remembering and grieving. We should all be with them on this special day," wrote one netizen on China's Twitter-like Sina Weibo.  

"The spring is coming but those who sacrificed in the battle against the epidemic have stopped their step in the past winter," read one typical comment on Weibo, which brought tears to many people. 

The vast majority of online users have supported the day without online entertainment, though a few expressed second opinions over the scale of the commemoration, expressing condolences and gratitude to medical staff and people who sacrificed their lives in the line of duty in the battle against the epidemic in the past two months. 

Videos of medical staff from all over China coming to aid Wuhan and those of commemorating martyrs, including firefighters, police officers and medical staff, were also popular on Douyin, a livestreaming platform.

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