Matchmaking Events Gain Popularity Amid China's Gender Imbalance
China's gender imbalance has made it difficult for some men to find their other half. Largely because of sex-selective abortions, for every 100 girls born in China, there are around 119 boys.
That's why matchmaking events and dating shows have become increasingly popular with the burgeoning single population.
In Beijing's Ditan Park, this week-long matchmaking event, organized by a popular matchmaking website, attracted around 50,000 visitors.
Chen Nan, a 29-year-old insurance worker, was there.
[Chen Nan, Insurance Worker]:
"I am the third oldest in my family, and everyone has a girlfriend except for me. Whenever there are get-togethers with university classmates and relatives they ask questions like 'Why don't you have a girlfriend?' or 'Are you going to have one next year?' So there is really a lot of pressure, a lot of invisible pressure."
The event organizer, a website with over 40 million members, says more than 70 percent of participants were parents of young singles - doing matchmaking on their child's behalf.
Some examined personal ads, jotting down contact details for their children. Some proactively set up dates for their son or daughter. And some even dragged their reluctant progeny with them.
[Mrs. Li, Mom of 26-Year-Old IT Technician]:
"My son is very busy with work - not just busy, but extremely busy. He has to work overtime a lot. He doesn't have many opportunities to meet girls. I don't know if he is worried, but I am quite worried. That's why when I saw the event, I rushed straight in."
With the Communist Party's One Child Policy, many couples will do what they can to have a son. The phenomenon of pregnant women aborting female babies has become, quote, "extremely common." It says the country's gender imbalance could see more than 24 million bachelors without spouses by the year 2020.