The ‘find books’ scam stirs up Chinese social networks

The 'find books' scam stirs up Chinese social networks 1

According to Sixth Tone, this is considered one of China’s largest and most bizarre Internet hoaxes in years.

Xu Jiayi and two books `found in Paris`.

On Chinese social networks, the search for the owner of the two books broke out.

But on April 12, the truth was revealed: This KOL made everything up.

Story in Paris

Xu Jiayi, 29 years old, nicknamed Thurman.

After repatriating, Jiayi launched her own clothing line, signing a contract with a KOL management company in Guangdong province.

On February 16, Jiayi posted a video about going to France for work.

Jiayi agreed, then took to social media to ask her followers for help.

The post immediately went viral.

`The plot itself is fascinating. It happens during the Spring Festival, involves traveling abroad, so it quickly became a trending topic on social media,` said Zhao Zhichao, captain of the police team

Many Chinese social network users immediately searched for the boy’s identity.

Continue making up stories

When many people began to doubt, Jiayi posted another video on February 19, saying she had found Lang’s mother.

Meanwhile, the Xihu District Police Office in Hangzhou continuously received feedback about the story, so it transferred the file to the cyber police unit for investigation.

Jiayi was immediately investigated by the police.

`I told her: When you lie, then add other lies to cover up your actions, you only make more mistakes,` Xuan Jing, a member of the cyber police team, told CCTV

On April 12, Jiayi posted a public apology video.

The Public Security Bureau in Hangzhou announced that Jiayi would face administrative punishment for `disturbing public order`, although no specific fine was given.

According to Channel News Asia, Jiayi’s incident sparked debate about influencers making up fake stories to attract engagement amid competition for attention.

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