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Canadian promotes charm of Chongqing online

Updated: 2021-12-01 08:25 ( Xinhua )
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Chongqing, a city of hills, rivers and skyscrapers in Southwest China, lures visitors with its unique characteristics. [Photo/Xinhua]

Walking on the streets in Southwest China's Chongqing city, Alex White, a Canadian man with a big following online, came upon one nice surprise after another.

White used to have some preconceptions before he visited the city. In 2019, he and his wife decided to spend their Christmas holiday in a Chinese city with about the same size population as his home country, when Chongqing jumped out.

When he researched Chongqing online, he found few relevant results, and one picture even indicated that the city was highly polluted.

However, when they were actually there, the inland municipality gave the couple a far better impression.

"Chongqing has a wonderful infrastructure. … The monorails crossing the buildings are amazingly designed, not to mention around 14,000 bridges it has," says White.

Delighted with the creative urban planning of Chongqing, with about 30 million people, he made up his mind to pay another visit to the city later.

The sudden outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, however, stood in the young man's way.

Since being in China in person became almost an impossible dream temporarily, White helped to build a personnel network composed of Chinese and foreign online users, hoping to facilitate exchanges on aerial shots and other images of Chongqing.

Using materials shared via the network, White updates one video every week on the platform, covering directions to Chongqing's characteristic bridges and skyscrapers. The work of the Canadian has changed many people's impressions of the city and the country.

"Many didn't know Chongqing well until they saw my video. And (now) they grow a love for this city and change their former views about China," he says.

"This is what I want to do, leaving legacy videos which are timeless, educational, and will not lose their glory in the future."

Besides, White introduced a group of foreign video bloggers to iChongqing, a local media outlet, helping to showcase the city's latest technology development and booming tourism.

As the pandemic eased in China, he finally got the chance to visit Chongqing in September. The minute he stepped off the plane, he couldn't wait to begin shooting his video.

"I don't want to miss a single bit of my quarantine process, and I want to show the world this. I think China did a smart job," he says.

"When the plane landed, the quarantine work began and left no room for potential risk. The technology also helps a lot, like contact tracking, a health QR code and the test result shown on WeChat."

Every foreign video blogger in China has a city as their muse, which inspires video production and creation, according to him.

"Chongqing is my city," he says. "And I want the world to see its beauty."

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