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Dangdang cyber-literature festival in Beijing
( chinadaily.com.cn )
Updated: 2016-04-19

The city of Beijing played host to the Dangdang Cyber Literary Festival culture summit, on April 16 in Beijing under a theme of literary inheritance, diversity and crossover as an important way to promote reading, literary societies, publishing, and exchanges.

This year's event, the 10th, was organized by the online retailer China Dangdang and will be held for a month, with readings throughout April, and four big book promotions and some famous writers on hand, including Jia Pingwa, Mai Jia and Wang Xiao, the first two of whom share their stories about a life with books to help readers understand how reading can change a person's life.

Some best-selling authors, such as Wang Xiao and Zhang Haochen, explore reading's soothing effect on mental faculties of urbanites. Dangdand has arranged a youth writing forum, where writers born in the 90s, including Yuan Ziwen, Yuan Zihao and Shen Yulun, share their anecdotes about books and give their own perspective.

Dangdang published a national book report at the forum, describing book habits over the past decade by region, gender, and age, showing major trends, and spending varying with age, and those born in the 80s becoming major book consumers. The cities of Beijing and Shanghai and Guangdong province remain major centers, with Jiangsu and Shandong provinces catching up.

It's worth noting that the book sales nationwide have become more balanced. Beijing, Shanghai and Guangdong accounted for 66 percent back in 2006, but 42 percent in 2015, while provinces with lower sales saw a rise from 6.3 percent in 2006 to 10.9 in 2015.

Dangdang says it's committed to reading by the public and that it has 30 million quite active customers. It says it figures that every reader has shopped three times on average and that most of them are well-educated and have a good income and, according to its VP, Chen Lijun, "Dangdang has sold 2 billion books over the past 16 years."

Its CEO, Li Guoqing, concludes by saying that reading has been its core business and that it is China's biggest e-commerce book seller, with nationwide promotions its important mission and, "Good reading needs guidance and Dangdang wants to guide the public to really read books they take back home to savor the taste of a book."

Li added that they will provide products for PCs and mobile terminals, for both casual and serious readers, and continue to satisfy the public's needs for high-quality reading.