China, Controversies

Chinese Blogger Lin Chenglong Jailed For His Red-Light Blog Foshan Dapao

July 7, 2011
China's barber shop

When blogging, it does not pay to let loose your cannon. Chinese blogger Lin Chenglong finds out the hard way when he was given a one-year jail sentence for publishing  photos of “barber shops”  (the shady ones) and bragging about his experiences in the shops on his blog ‘Foshan Dapao’ (or literally Foshan Big Cannon).

Getting a man’s hair cut in China isn’t always easy despite an abundance of leggy female ‘stylists’ standing invitingly at the doors of barber shops. These barber shops or hair salons are mostly prostitution dens, not real barber shops.

China's barber shop

Barber shop in China (Photo Credit

Lin, 22, started visiting these barber shops at age 17 when an older friend took him to a barber shop in Foshan City, Guangdong for the first time and he became heavily addicted to the services that such “barber shops” provided.

In March 2009, he started sharing his experiences at these barber shops on his blog “Eating, Drinking, Whoring, Gambling” which was filled with photos and written content about his sexual adventures with the prostitutes (or ‘servers’ as Lin like to refer them as). From March 2010 until his arrest in November, Lin patronised 70 ‘servers’, blogging extensively about 48 of them under the pen name ‘the Foshan Cannon’. Lin provided details about where he met the girls, how much he paid for their services (including notes on the ‘special services’ each of them offered).

When Lin was arrested for spreading pornographic content in November 2010, he had attracted a readership of roughly 60,000, and had uploaded 171 photos from his phone camera and 48 posts detailing his experiences. Lin later revealed that between years 2005 to 2010, and at only 21 years of age, he had already visited the “barber shops” more than 300 times.

Lin’s fame or notoriety (depending at which way you look at it) led to his downfall. His blog attracted the attention of the authorities and he was subsequently sentenced to a year of imprisonment. By publishing his experiences in these barber shops on his blog, Chinese authorities feel that  Lin has illegally helped to promote prostitution online.

When asked why he had decided to start such a blog, a remorseful Lin said he had only wanted to combine his two favorite hobbies into one: keeping a blog and going for sexual gratification at the “barber shops.”

He also explained that he didn’t expect to attract such a huge audience and insisted that his blog is only for his personal gratification.

According to Baidu, Lin’s blog was ranked first place on Baidu’s popular trends search list last week.

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