Beijing Watchdog: Black Jails, Battle of the Bands and

Beijing Watchdog: Black Jails, Battle of the Bands and

August temperatures may have been cooler than July so far, but other things are heating up in the capital. A man just confessed to murdering a little girl and escalators in Beijing’s subway system continue to malfunction. Luckily we can all relax with a sure to be entertaining battle of the bands and a nice walk in the park (before they are taken over by computers…).

News Roundup:

1) Computers to Run Beijing Parks?
No, it is not a joke! Beijing authorities are planning on installing what they call a ‘digital intelligence service system’ in all of Beijing’s park by next year. The computers will be operated by a touch screen and will offer ticketing and information services in eight languages. No word yet on if they will actually replace human staff, but let’s hope they don’t!

2) Man Confesses to Murdering Missing Girl
Compared to the streets of Detroit, Beijing seems to be fairly safe, but murders still happen here. On July 29th, a bus terminal worker in Fengtai District, Wang Jiangguo, confessed to murdering a 7-year-old girl missing since July 4th. According to Wang’s confession, he saw the little girl while walking his dog and enticed the girl to follow him home with the promise of allowing her to play on his computer. Once he got the girl in his house he then killed her and later disposed of her body near a bridge in Fengtai District. It is speculated Wang might also be linked to a case of another missing girl but details have not been released.

3) Black Jails in Beijing
‘Black jails’ refer to detention centers that intercept and detain petitioners at the command of local officials. They are illegal but they still operate in Beijing. On August 2nd police in Beijing said that they closed a black jail that had been operating in Beijing’s Changping District since 2004. Police were slim on details but it appears the black jail was operating at the bequest of some officials in Beijing that did not like to be bothered by petitioners. Yu Jianrong, a professor working for the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, cryptically said that this would probably not be the last case of black jails in Beijing.

4) Don’t Take the Deathscalator! (I mean Escalator!)
After accidents in both Beijing and Shenzhen China ducted an extensive investigation into the state of escalators in the Middle Kingdom, the results of which were released at the end of July. According to the report, nearly 10,000 escalators in China have been identified as having ‘potential problems’ and nearly 4,000 have been taken out of operation. Beijing subways is continuing to get heat for the state of its escalators as you can clearly see from the photo above (line 10 by the way!).  

5) Easier to Schedule Hospital Appointments
If you do happen to get hurt on an escalator at least Beijing has launched a unified platform to make it easier to schedule an appointment to get that ugly gash checked at a local hospital. The platform allows people to schedule appointments at local hospitals through the phone or the Internet. For more info read here.


1) Battle of the Bands
If watching local bands go head to head in an effort to win a little cash and the adoration of Beijing’s hoppin’ music scene then you’re in luck. On August 20th be sure to head out to Mao Livehouse and catch the second semi-final, tickets are 70 RMB. The much anticipated final is set to take place on August 26th at the well known Tango club, tickets are also 70 RMB. Both events start at 20:00. So mark the dates and get ready to get rocked!

2) The Monster Below makes it Way to Beijing
Mark your calendars because this August 25th is the international debut of David Jacobi’s award winning play, The Monster Below, at Beijing’s Penghao Theater. Produced by Jacobi’s very own Monster Down! Theater Company it is sure to both haunt you and make you think, so don’t miss it! The performance runs on the 25th, 26th and 28th at 19:30 while there will be a matinee performance on the 27th at 14:30.

3) Wasabi Sound Beach Party!
If you are a fan of beach parties then get yourself ready for the Wasabi Sound beach party as it will be hitting Beijing’s neighbour of Tianjin on September 3rd. It will feature European DJ Samuel L. Session and plenty of hot girls in bikinis…what could be better! It might be a little far away but roundtrip bus rides are included so you have no excuse not to make it out. If you want to travel yourself, the party will go down at Dongjiang Artificial Beach, in Tanggu, right outside of Tianjin. Tickets are 350 RMB at the door, 300 presale (200 if you don’t want to take the bus) and 2,000 RMB VIP tickets are also available.


1) Thai and Cocktails
If you are a fan of Thai food then you need to get on over to Sanlitun and check out the newly opened restaurant Yum. Opened by the same folks that run the popular D Lounge it is located directly above the stylish cocktail lounge. Word on the street is that the menu is still going through some tweaks but there are also some excellent cocktails available. So get on over to the Sanlitun Courtyard (south of the Village).

2) Lantern Reopens!
Mark August 26th as a day to rejoice as Acupuncture Records will be bringing back their original club Lantern! It will be at a new location near Gongti West Gate but it is sure to be groove with Acupuncture’s great music. So get out there and enjoy the great DJ lineup.

Something to Look Forward to!

Attention all Black Eyed Peas fans in Beijing! It is official: rapper will make his way to Beijing later this year to both direct and perform in concert to help educational ties between the US and China. Exact dates have not yet been determined so keep up to date so you don’t miss an opportunity to hear some great music. You can read more about it here

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Keywords: Beijing watchdog in Beijing escalator problems Beijing black jails Beijing battle of the bands Beijing


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