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Pictures | Wed Apr 12, 2017 | 4:50pm BST

Chinese seek live streaming stardom

A girl broadcasts at live streaming talent agency Three Minute TV in Beijing, China. Tens of thousands hope to find online stardom as an anchor on the live video streaming phenomenon sweeping China's media.

REUTERS/Damir Sagolj

A girl broadcasts at live streaming talent agency Three Minute TV in Beijing, China. Tens of thousands hope to find online stardom as an anchor on the live video streaming phenomenon sweeping China's media. REUTERS/Damir Sagolj

A girl broadcasts at live streaming talent agency Three Minute TV in Beijing, China. Tens of thousands hope to find online stardom as an anchor on the live video streaming phenomenon sweeping China's media. REUTERS/Damir Sagolj
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1 / 19
A girl broadcasts at Three Minute TV, a live streaming talent agency in Beijing. The fastest-emerging internet sector barely existed in China three years ago but last year produced revenues of more than 30 billion yuan ($4.3 billion) and according to an estimate by investment bank China Renaissance Securities, is set to more than triple that by 2020. That puts it on track to overtake cinema box office receipts in a few year's time.

REUTERS/Thomas Peter

A girl broadcasts at Three Minute TV, a live streaming talent agency in Beijing. The fastest-emerging internet sector barely existed in China three years ago but last year produced revenues of more than 30 billion yuan ($4.3 billion) and according to...more

A girl broadcasts at Three Minute TV, a live streaming talent agency in Beijing. The fastest-emerging internet sector barely existed in China three years ago but last year produced revenues of more than 30 billion yuan ($4.3 billion) and according to an estimate by investment bank China Renaissance Securities, is set to more than triple that by 2020. That puts it on track to overtake cinema box office receipts in a few year's time. REUTERS/Thomas Peter
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2 / 19
A camera is seen at a live streaming talent agency Three Minute TV, in Beijing. "I want more people to watch me, to spend Huajiao coins on me," part-time presenster Jing Qi explained, referring to the virtual gifts her online followers buy that she can later redeem in part for cash. "In the end, I'll be able to marry a tall, handsome and rich man," Jing said.

REUTERS/Thomas Peter

A camera is seen at a live streaming talent agency Three Minute TV, in Beijing. "I want more people to watch me, to spend Huajiao coins on me," part-time presenster Jing Qi explained, referring to the virtual gifts her online followers buy that she...more

A camera is seen at a live streaming talent agency Three Minute TV, in Beijing. "I want more people to watch me, to spend Huajiao coins on me," part-time presenster Jing Qi explained, referring to the virtual gifts her online followers buy that she can later redeem in part for cash. "In the end, I'll be able to marry a tall, handsome and rich man," Jing said. REUTERS/Thomas Peter
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3 / 19
A girl broadcasts at live streaming talent agency Three Minute TV in Beijing. The rapid growth of live streaming in China has attracted a rush of investment, led by China's tech heavyweights, Tencent Holdings, Alibaba Group Holding and Baidu Inc. They hope live streaming can boost existing services in e-commerce, social networking and gaming.

REUTERS/Damir Sagolj

A girl broadcasts at live streaming talent agency Three Minute TV in Beijing. The rapid growth of live streaming in China has attracted a rush of investment, led by China's tech heavyweights, Tencent Holdings, Alibaba Group Holding and Baidu Inc....more

A girl broadcasts at live streaming talent agency Three Minute TV in Beijing. The rapid growth of live streaming in China has attracted a rush of investment, led by China's tech heavyweights, Tencent Holdings, Alibaba Group Holding and Baidu Inc. They hope live streaming can boost existing services in e-commerce, social networking and gaming. REUTERS/Damir Sagolj
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4 / 19
Girls attend make-up training session at live streaming talent agency Three Minute TV in Beijing. The lure is some 344 million Chinese netizens � more than the population of every country on the planet bar China and India - who were watching live streaming sites in December. And that is only about 47 percent of all Chinese Internet users. There are about 150 live streaming platforms, most producing entertainment shows.

REUTERS/Thomas Peter

Girls attend make-up training session at live streaming talent agency Three Minute TV in Beijing. The lure is some 344 million Chinese netizens � more than the population of every country on the planet bar China and India - who were watching live...more

Girls attend make-up training session at live streaming talent agency Three Minute TV in Beijing. The lure is some 344 million Chinese netizens � more than the population of every country on the planet bar China and India - who were watching live streaming sites in December. And that is only about 47 percent of all Chinese Internet users. There are about 150 live streaming platforms, most producing entertainment shows. REUTERS/Thomas Peter
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5 / 19
Girls attend make-up training session at live streaming talent agency Three Minute TV, in Beijing. The importance of live streaming in lower-tier cities is greater than elsewhere in China. Access to the internet via a mobile phone is the major, if not the only, gateway to shopping and entertainment, said Karen Chan, equities analyst at Jefferies Hong Kong.

REUTERS/Thomas Peter

Girls attend make-up training session at live streaming talent agency Three Minute TV, in Beijing. The importance of live streaming in lower-tier cities is greater than elsewhere in China. Access to the internet via a mobile phone is the major, if...more

Girls attend make-up training session at live streaming talent agency Three Minute TV, in Beijing. The importance of live streaming in lower-tier cities is greater than elsewhere in China. Access to the internet via a mobile phone is the major, if not the only, gateway to shopping and entertainment, said Karen Chan, equities analyst at Jefferies Hong Kong. REUTERS/Thomas Peter
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6 / 19
A girl attends make-up training session at live streaming talent agency Three Minute TV in Beijing. Live streaming has also bolstered the growth of ancillary businesses, including agencies looking to find the next live streaming star, consumer loans, and even cosmetic surgery.

REUTERS/Thomas Peter

A girl attends make-up training session at live streaming talent agency Three Minute TV in Beijing. Live streaming has also bolstered the growth of ancillary businesses, including agencies looking to find the next live streaming star, consumer loans,...more

A girl attends make-up training session at live streaming talent agency Three Minute TV in Beijing. Live streaming has also bolstered the growth of ancillary businesses, including agencies looking to find the next live streaming star, consumer loans, and even cosmetic surgery. REUTERS/Thomas Peter
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7 / 19
A girl broadcasts at live streaming talent agency Three Minute TV, in Beijing. Deng Jian, chairman of Three Minute TV, an agency that provides 1,000 trained anchors to more than three dozen platforms, said his business operates a "militarized" production machine to feed the live streaming industry. At an office building in a suburb of Beijing, dozens of Deng's female anchors work each day around the clock in three shifts. Each anchor sits in a small booth, decorated to appear like a girl's bedroom, facing a computer.

REUTERS/Thomas Peter

A girl broadcasts at live streaming talent agency Three Minute TV, in Beijing. Deng Jian, chairman of Three Minute TV, an agency that provides 1,000 trained anchors to more than three dozen platforms, said his business operates a "militarized"...more

A girl broadcasts at live streaming talent agency Three Minute TV, in Beijing. Deng Jian, chairman of Three Minute TV, an agency that provides 1,000 trained anchors to more than three dozen platforms, said his business operates a "militarized" production machine to feed the live streaming industry. At an office building in a suburb of Beijing, dozens of Deng's female anchors work each day around the clock in three shifts. Each anchor sits in a small booth, decorated to appear like a girl's bedroom, facing a computer. REUTERS/Thomas Peter
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8 / 19
Handbags are seen on a shelf at Three Minute TV, a live streaming talent agency in Beijing. They sing and flirt with fans, encouraging them to buy virtual gifts, like a rose, sportscar or villa. The cash for the gifts is split by the platforms, agencies and the anchor.

REUTERS/Thomas Peter

Handbags are seen on a shelf at Three Minute TV, a live streaming talent agency in Beijing. They sing and flirt with fans, encouraging them to buy virtual gifts, like a rose, sportscar or villa. The cash for the gifts is split by the platforms,...more

Handbags are seen on a shelf at Three Minute TV, a live streaming talent agency in Beijing. They sing and flirt with fans, encouraging them to buy virtual gifts, like a rose, sportscar or villa. The cash for the gifts is split by the platforms, agencies and the anchor. REUTERS/Thomas Peter
Close
9 / 19
A girl broadcasts at live streaming talent agency Three Minute TV in Beijing. Three Minute TV also arranges cosmetic surgery at partner hospitals for its anchors, arranges small bank loans for the surgery, photographs and markets the anchors and helps them find acting opportunities Deng said.

REUTERS/Damir Sagolj

A girl broadcasts at live streaming talent agency Three Minute TV in Beijing. Three Minute TV also arranges cosmetic surgery at partner hospitals for its anchors, arranges small bank loans for the surgery, photographs and markets the anchors and...more

A girl broadcasts at live streaming talent agency Three Minute TV in Beijing. Three Minute TV also arranges cosmetic surgery at partner hospitals for its anchors, arranges small bank loans for the surgery, photographs and markets the anchors and helps them find acting opportunities Deng said. REUTERS/Damir Sagolj
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10 / 19
A girl carries a small dog in her bag as she walks inside a dormitory housing broadcasts of live streaming talent agency Three Minute TV in Beijing. Authorities have also clamped down on streaming sites that provide illegal content, adding to the consolidation risk, said iResearch analyst Tina Zhang. In July, China's culture ministry announced that it had shut down 4,313 online show rooms, firing or punishing more than 18,000 anchors. Twelve platforms, including heavyweights Panda TV, 6.CN and Douyu, were punished and ordered to make changes after offering illicit content that "promotes obscenity, violence, abets crime and damages social morality."

REUTERS/Damir Sagolj

A girl carries a small dog in her bag as she walks inside a dormitory housing broadcasts of live streaming talent agency Three Minute TV in Beijing. Authorities have also clamped down on streaming sites that provide illegal content, adding to the...more

A girl carries a small dog in her bag as she walks inside a dormitory housing broadcasts of live streaming talent agency Three Minute TV in Beijing. Authorities have also clamped down on streaming sites that provide illegal content, adding to the consolidation risk, said iResearch analyst Tina Zhang. In July, China's culture ministry announced that it had shut down 4,313 online show rooms, firing or punishing more than 18,000 anchors. Twelve platforms, including heavyweights Panda TV, 6.CN and Douyu, were punished and ordered to make changes after offering illicit content that "promotes obscenity, violence, abets crime and damages social morality." REUTERS/Damir Sagolj
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11 / 19
Girls play with a dog at live streaming talent agency Three Minute TV in Beijing. Still, the prospect of change in the sector hasn't faded the hopes of thousands of young Chinese who want to become internet stars.

REUTERS/Thomas Peter

Girls play with a dog at live streaming talent agency Three Minute TV in Beijing. Still, the prospect of change in the sector hasn't faded the hopes of thousands of young Chinese who want to become internet stars. REUTERS/Thomas Peter

Girls play with a dog at live streaming talent agency Three Minute TV in Beijing. Still, the prospect of change in the sector hasn't faded the hopes of thousands of young Chinese who want to become internet stars. REUTERS/Thomas Peter
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12 / 19
A stuffed toy is seen at live streaming talent agency Three Minute TV, in Beijing. Jin Xing, the founder of cosmetic surgery app Soyoung, said he estimates 95 percent of anchors have undergone cosmetic surgery to improve their looks. The app connects cosmetic surgery centres with prospective clients. "Live streaming cannot be faked and cosmetic surgery increases the chance of getting a virtual gift," said Jin, who reckons about a fifth of Soyoung customers come from the live streaming universe.

REUTERS/Thomas Peter

A stuffed toy is seen at live streaming talent agency Three Minute TV, in Beijing. Jin Xing, the founder of cosmetic surgery app Soyoung, said he estimates 95 percent of anchors have undergone cosmetic surgery to improve their looks. The app connects...more

A stuffed toy is seen at live streaming talent agency Three Minute TV, in Beijing. Jin Xing, the founder of cosmetic surgery app Soyoung, said he estimates 95 percent of anchors have undergone cosmetic surgery to improve their looks. The app connects cosmetic surgery centres with prospective clients. "Live streaming cannot be faked and cosmetic surgery increases the chance of getting a virtual gift," said Jin, who reckons about a fifth of Soyoung customers come from the live streaming universe. REUTERS/Thomas Peter
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13 / 19
Girls attend make-up training session at live streaming talent agency Three Minute TV in Beijing.
REUTERS/Thomas Peter

Girls attend make-up training session at live streaming talent agency Three Minute TV in Beijing. REUTERS/Thomas Peter

Girls attend make-up training session at live streaming talent agency Three Minute TV in Beijing. REUTERS/Thomas Peter
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14 / 19
A girl attends make-up training session at live streaming talent agency Three Minute TV in Beijing. REUTERS/Thomas Peter

A girl attends make-up training session at live streaming talent agency Three Minute TV in Beijing. REUTERS/Thomas Peter

A girl attends make-up training session at live streaming talent agency Three Minute TV in Beijing. REUTERS/Thomas Peter
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15 / 19
Girls attend make-up training session at live streaming talent agency Three Minute TV in Beijing. REUTERS/Thomas Peter

Girls attend make-up training session at live streaming talent agency Three Minute TV in Beijing. REUTERS/Thomas Peter

Girls attend make-up training session at live streaming talent agency Three Minute TV in Beijing. REUTERS/Thomas Peter
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16 / 19
A girl broadcasts at a live streaming talent agency Three Minute TV in Beijing. REUTERS/Thomas Peter

A girl broadcasts at a live streaming talent agency Three Minute TV in Beijing. REUTERS/Thomas Peter

A girl broadcasts at a live streaming talent agency Three Minute TV in Beijing. REUTERS/Thomas Peter
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17 / 19
A girl broadcasts at live streaming talent agency Three Minute TV in Beijing. REUTERS/Damir Sagolj

A girl broadcasts at live streaming talent agency Three Minute TV in Beijing. REUTERS/Damir Sagolj

A girl broadcasts at live streaming talent agency Three Minute TV in Beijing. REUTERS/Damir Sagolj
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18 / 19
A girl broadcasts at a live streaming talent agency Three Minute TV in Beijing. REUTERS/Thomas Peter

A girl broadcasts at a live streaming talent agency Three Minute TV in Beijing. REUTERS/Thomas Peter

A girl broadcasts at a live streaming talent agency Three Minute TV in Beijing. REUTERS/Thomas Peter
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19 / 19

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