Chinese Livestreamer Drinks Himself to Death Trying to Go Viral
A man in northeastern China died just before New Year’s Day after consuming copious amounts of various liquids over time for his livestreams.
Chu, 29, reportedly drank beer, spirits and even cooking oil for three straight months before his body finally gave up.
On Dec. 31, Chu made his final broadcast through an app called Liaoliao.
According to The Paper, he drank alcohol for viewers at a supermarket in Dalian, Liaoning province before falling ill and dying in a taxi on his way home.
Speaking to reporters, an unnamed friend claimed that Chu had died because he never took time to rest.
“He died not because he drank that day, but because he had done so for three months. He drank beer and other things, without taking a rest, even for a day,” Chu’s friend said, according to the South China Morning Post.
At one point, Chu could no longer take the drinking but soldiered on in the name of cash.
“In one video clip, he sat there telling people he couldn’t do it anymore. He was twitching, but people still asked him to continue,” his friend added.
Livestreaming has gained momentum to become a lucrative career in China, where companies such as Liaoliao have evolved to cater to the growing demand.
Broadcasters perform all possible acts under tight censorship rules — singing, dancing, gaming, eating, drinking and more, all in pursuit of online fame.
Following Chu’s death, Liaoliao suspended operations to run a “self-inspection,” which supposedly aligns its work to the Chinese government’s ongoing “Internet Clean-Up” initiative.
It’s unclear who may be held accountable for Chu’s death, but a man surnamed Wang has confessed that he was “partly responsible” for he oversaw one of the chat rooms Chu had used.
Wang argued that most of the burden, however, rests on Liaoliao. Chu reportedly made around 500 yuan ($74) a day for livestreaming.
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