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School beauty contests, we are not amused

Editor: Li Kun 丨CCTV.com

08-05-2015 15:25 BJT

By Emma Tang

On May 1, the first Guangxi Province School Beauty Contest was held in Nanning, southwest China and hundreds of beautiful school girls and boys participated. After more than two months of selections; on July 19, the champion went to a senior student - Liang Xiaomeihui - who was awarded a 5,000 yuan grand prize.

According to the organizer, the contest would focus on the competitors’ pretty faces and figures, but also included a talent show, public speeches, public service activities, popularization of science, and support for filial piety.

The top six candidates would become the image ambassadors for the Nanning Zoo, calling on people to care for and to protect wild animals.

But, does this really make sense?

The contest seemed to be a million miles different from what the sponsors had initially described. The public didn’t see how selected players performed in the talent show or how they worked hard in the knowledge competition.

All we can view are their pictures on the Internet, in which these “school beauties” wore skimpy swimsuits, giggling and flirting, while showing their heavy-makeup faces on the catwalk.

Most cyber citizens did not feel content with the outcome. There were no open and fair standards for the selection process, because we didn’t know who were the judges. The contest could have been powered by a so-called Mr. Big.

The contest is a farce, a commercial advertisement for the local zoo combined with the news media absorbing people’s eyes and clicks. It is not a contest in the purest sense, but a public relations gimmick for the local zoo.

Contested promoters exploited students, whose main tasks should have been to acquire more knowledge on campus. Instead they served as a profitable tool to amuse the zoo’s visitors.

Additionally, many universities package their school beauties, posting them on the website homepage or recruitment posters to attract more students.

“I enjoy appreciating these beautiful school girls, but I just regard them as a sort of entertainment.” Mi Ge, a male college student from Jinan, Shandong Province. “Actually, they have nothing to do with me, because they are not going to be my girlfriend.”

When asked whether they would consider school beauties as one of the elements to choose a university, Jia Rong, a female college student from Beijing, said: “That’s ridiculous. When I choose a university, I will take its authority and environment into consideration. I don’t believe in their beauty, because they all use photo-shopped images. The real person is always not as pretty. Only those silly guys could be cheated by them.”

In recent years, numerous school beauties, such as Zhang Zetian and Huang Cancan, have become well-known among  young people, especially college students. They take part in television programs exposing their personal lives to the public.

But they are nothing more than pretty faces for the Chinese public to gossip about. Their photos, videos are spread throughout the social media and websites, and people make comments about their appearances. They are neither models nor actresses; they are simply normal students.

When these school beauties are put under the spotlight, they gradually lose their identification as students. They have gotten more involved in commercial activities, becoming a consumer good for the masses.

College students should concentrate on their school work and perform meaningful activities, such as serving as volunteers. They shouldn’t become an object of entertainment.

Furthermore, it is superficial for universities to enroll new students by using school beauties for recruitment, because people objectify females from the males’ point of view. A student who is praised just because of her beauty would make others feel that life is unfair, and they would get more envious of these school beauties.     

 

( The opinions expressed here do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Panview or CCTV.com. )

 

 

Panview offers a new window of understanding the world as well as China through the views, opinions, and analysis of experts. We also welcome outside submissions, so feel free to send in your own editorials to "globalopinion@vip.cntv.cn" for consideration.

Panview offers an alternative angle on China and the rest of the world through the analyses and opinions of experts. We also welcome outside submissions, so feel free to send in your own editorials to "globalopinion@vip.cntv.cn" for consideration.

 

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