Spurred in part by a shortage of engaging youth-oriented content in China, where Facebook and YouTube are blocked, and media and entertainment outlets are heavily censored, Chinese ACG is developing into a multibillion-dollar industry, analysts say, drawing investment from tech titans such as Tencent and Alibaba.

With amateur video uploads booming in smartphone-addicted China, platforms like Bilibili are fuelling and capitalising on the ease with which the average Chinese armed with a camera can attain viral celebrity.

Big crowds, big bucks: a beginner’s guide to the e-sports phenomenon that’s conquering China

 

The twenty-something Yaorenmao, a pseudonym meaning “cat that bites people”, began a few years ago to upload brief DIY videos from her home in the southwestern city of Chengdu in 2011. She dances to saccharine-sweet tunes in the clips, acting out an unfulfilled childhood dream of becoming a dancer.

 

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