Woman Attacked for Photographing Person Eating on Subway

A Chinese woman photographed eating grapes while in the subway in Hangzhou.
A woman is eating grapes in subway
The middle aged woman begins eating grapes.

From Sina:

Pregnant Woman Attacked on Subway For Photographing Middle-Aged Woman Eating Grapes

[September] 24th, the Jiubao Station platform of the Hangzhou Subway was audience to the great chase and battle between two women. Turns out a pregnant woman had seen a middle-aged woman eating continuously in the subway train carriage, gone forward asking her to stop, but the other person wouldn’t listen. So she took out her mobile phone to take a photo intending to expose her on the internet, only for the other party to angrily chase and attack her. This was cast in the same mold as the Wuhan Subway “hot-and-dry noodles” incident, and whether or not it is appropriate to photograph someone to expose them is appropriate once again incited heated netizen discussion.

■ Recounting the scene

Photographing someone eating causes dispute

Zhu Qian (pseudonym), the pregnant woman, recounted the whole story. On the morning of the 24th, she went to work by subway as usual. After getting on the train, she noticed a middle-aged woman next to her eating cookies/crackers, and thus went up to her and asked her to stop. “I very politely said to her that eating isn’t allowed in the subway.” Zhuqian says she’s the “nosy” type so whenever she sees something wrong, she always points it out.

Zhuqian even made a joke at the same time, “Careful, you might get hit/beaten up later.” To her surprise, the middle-aged woman in red leather shoes nonchalantly replied asking, “And are you going to be the one to hit me?” After saying this, she went on eating, even taking out an iPad to use while eating. “I said to her, ‘I wouldn’t hit you, but there are so many people on the train looking at you, it’s rather embarrassing’,” Zhu Qian said. However, the woman ignored her and continued eating. After finishing the cookies/crackers, she began eating grapes, her mouth never stopping the entire way.

After passing two stations, Zhu Qian simply couldn’t bear it anymore and wanted to take a picture to expose it [publicly post it online]. “However, I didn’t plan on photographing her face, just a whole body picture from the back.” When the middle-aged woman arrived at her stop and got off the train, Zhu Qian raised her mobile phone and aimed at the woman but when she pressed the shutter, she was caught by the woman.

“She very angrily charged over, screaming ‘who said you could take a photo’, and even tried to seize my mobile phone,” Zhuqian recalled. She immediately put her mobile phone into her bag so the woman pushed her, and she pushed back.

Here the middle-aged woman became thoroughly enraged. She stretched out her hand to hit Zhu Qian and Zhu Qian ran towards the subway platform. Seeing the woman about to catch her and afraid of the consequences, Zhu Qian ran back into the train car where there were more people. Luckily at that moment, the subway began moving and the middle-aged woman stopped chasing her.

“Only afterwards did I remember I’m already over two months pregnant and this kind of situation is rather dangerous. If something happened, I don’t even know what the consequences would be,” Zhu Qian feared a bit afterwards.

This incident was also exposed in Weibo by several other netizens riding on the same train.

A woman is eating hot and dry noodles
A Wuhan subway passenger eating hot-and-dry noodles unhappy with someone taking pictures unexpectedly dumped the noodles on the person’s head.

■ Related incidents

Netizen had hot-and-dry noodles poured on head

In March of this year, a similar incident also happened in the Wuhan subway where a passenger eating hot-and-dry noodles unhappy with someone photographing her unexpectedly dumped the noodles on that person’s head.

At the time, a young woman was holding and eating hot-and-dry noodles in a the subway carriage and refusing to listen to other passengers. Ms. Ye, who was sitting across from her, used her mobile phone and took a photo of the scene, arousing an fierce reaction from the young woman who then dumped the bowl of hot-and-dry noodles onto her head. Feeling aggrieved, Ms. Ye then posted her bitter experience as well as the young woman’s photo onto Weibo, causing a storm with relevant search results numbering over a hundred of thousand. Tens of thousands of netizens expressed their opinions, with most people condemning the young woman’s behavior, and even some people claiming that they’ll launch a human fresh search on her. Seeing things developing with an unhealthy trend, a Ms. Ye that had already calmed down begged netizens not to publish the young woman’s personal information to avoid causing harm to her. Meanwhile, she also expressed regret for impulsively publishing the the young woman’s photo without first blurring it.

This is the first extreme case caused by persuading others not to eat in the train in three month since No.2 Wuhan subway started to operate. Many netizens appeal everyone comply with social morality and hope embarrassed things like splashing noodles will never happen again.

■ Heated debate among netizens

How to enforce the subway prohibition on eating food

Scallion cakes, leek dumplings… the practically sealed subway cars are filled with undesirable odors during the morning rush hour, leaving many passengers fed up. Recently, the topic of whether or not eating in the subway should be prohibited has received widespread discussion. The recently submitted “Shanghai Metro Management Regulations (Revised Draft)” (amendment draft) has amongst them for the first time a regulation prohibiting eating inside the carriage. According to the amended revised draft, “eating and drinking inside the train car” along with behaviors such as smoking, spitting, urinating, etc. have all been listed as prohibited. Violators will “be subject to corrective action by rail company, with warnings or fines ranging from 50 to 500 yuan.”

In fact, Shanghai is not the first city that plans to implement a prohibition on eating in the subway. Wuhan enacted regulations concerning the fining of eating in the subway last year; Nanjing subway stipulated several years ago that passengers face a 20-100 yuan for eating or drinking in the subway; Shenzhen regulated that eating and drinking inside subway stations will be a 200 yuan fine. As well, foreign countries, including Singapore, America, Germany, etc. all have regulations prohibiting the consumption of food in the subway.

Most netizens think prohibiting eating in the subway by itself is good, but how it should be enforced is a big problem/question. Netizens believe the sense of justice in asking others to stop eating should be affirmed, but whether or not it’s appropriate to take photos and expose [people] remains controversial.

Some netizens believe, to those who don’t listen to persuasion, it’s not going too far to give them dirty looks, and the method of exposing them [publicly shaming them on the internet] is even more effective. However, other netizens believe photographing them and exposing them is not appropriate, and even violates the right of portraiture [control over the use of one’s likeness]. The Hangzhou Subway Operating Company indicates that in this kind of situation, the best thing to do is call the subway department’s hotline and have them come out to handle it.

Combined reports from Xinhua, China National Radio, and Morning Express

(Original title: Pregnant Woman Who Photographed Someone Eating Grapes in Subway Chased and Attacked)

Comments on Sina:

bird政府 [上海]:

Grapes don’t have any undesirable odor, so if they’re eating it, let them. Nor did it say she littered the grape skins, so the pregnant woman was being nosy. And she even cautioned that she’s asking to be beat up. Does that sound like a joke to you? It’s not like she knows you, so who would think it’s a joke?

手机用户 [广东深圳]:

Pregnant and still you took a photo. If she doesn’t hit you, who else would she hit?

手机用户1957767454 [广东广州]:

These psycho pregnant women are the most obnoxious! What the hell does her eating grapes have to do with you? This rubbish pregnant woman must be one of those ugly, poor, and useless women, who can’t marry a rich man and can’t afford grapes herself, so she was jealous of others eating grapes. Rubbish! Rubbish! Don’t think you’re untouchable just because you’re pregnant. If I were to run into her, I too would beat her up!

手机用户 [河南郑州]:

Who do you think you are? What the hell does someone else eating grapes have to do with you? Pretending to be so righteous…go ahead and pretend. Got hit? You deserved it!

手机用户 [浙江杭州]:

In this, when it comes to a country where a majority of people spit and litter garbage wherever they please, I think eating cookies/crackers on the subway really isn’t a big deal.

手机用户 [广东广州]:

So many people cursing [the pregnant woman], must be those who often eat on the subway, afraid of the country enacting policies [prohibiting eating on the subway], and then they won’t dare eat on the subway anymore. What more, most of them must not have any character, nor the guts, and can only go online to show their existence. Sigh, tragic, pathetic.

手机用户 [陕西西安]:

I really dislike people eating things in the subway carriage, filling the entire carriage with an odor. This kind of person is too selfish. Can’t you finish eating before getting in the carriage?

愤而不再青 [浙江杭州]:

What this society lacks is precisely this kind of righteousness/uprightness. What’s sad is that there are this many netizens on the internet denouncing this pregnant woman, approving of this kind of behavior.

smwyywms [北京]:

There are many people who eat on Beijing’s subways. To be honest, 90% of them are migrants [not locals] and they simply don’t regard Beijing as their own home. If you say you will be late, then why don’t you get up 10 minutes earlier? Besides, if it is like this everyday, is it still just an occasional situation? Trains come every 1-2 minutes in the subway, and the platform is such a big place, can’t you just finish eating there and then get on the train? If you just treat Beijing as a tool to make money, a cake to enjoy, capital to show off, then please go home to look after your parents and educate your children. Beijing doesn’t need your contamination and defiling. I love Beijing!

东东为自己带盐 [广东深圳]:

Seeing the comments upvoted to the front [top] surprisingly all agreeing with eating in the subway… picking nose Is it a tragedy of our countrymen or are the water army upvoting maliciously? Come, upvote my post and let’s see if it can surpass theirs or not?

沉默的修理工 [安徽宣城]:

Don’t avoid doing good just because the good is small.

手机用户 [安徽合肥]:

This is just like killing a person with a knife is illegal, but killing a pig with a knife is normal. Affecting others is what is wrong, but I don’t see how eating grapes affected others here.

Lucifer_Paradise [天津]:

…Not allowed to eat on public transportation? And it’s a basic/common regulation internationally? Did your family make this regulation? What about those trains, planes, or ships that provide food themselves? If we’re just talking about the subway, then we should see whether the Hangzhou subway really has “no eating allowed” expressly stipulated before commenting. Otherwise, don’t always always bring up “international turtle buttocks [a homophone for “regulations”]”.

手机用户 [河南郑州]:

Pregnant and still so nosy/meddlesome, what smell do cookies and grapes have? Do you have nothing better to do? You deserved to be hit! ANd you even be careful of being hit, does that sound like a joking? It immediately sounds like a threat! You should’ve been beaten up the moment you said this and you still have the nerve to expose [the incident]…

手机用户 [天津]:

Because people like you who deserve to die are too many.

手机用户 [广东湛江]:

Don’t think you just because you have a mobile phone that you can take pictures as you please. You can use your mobile phone to photograph scenery as you please and no one will care, but you can’t take photographs of other people as you please violating their individual rights. Eating in public places is not right, but you can only admonish them or inform the management to come handle it. Wantonly infringing on [other people’s] individual rights is just asking for a beating.

免得你们不认识我 [浙江杭州]:

Do cookies have an odor? Do grapes have an odor? You TM have a dog’s nose?

手机用户 [广东惠州]:

Why are there so many nosy meddling busybodies in the world?

手机用户 [浙江杭州]:

What business is it of yours if someone else is hungry and eats something? If you can’t deal with it, then just walk away. You deserved being hit for not minding your own business. Idiot.

手机用户 [广东湛江]:

There are so many people in the comments who don’t even know the basic/common international regulation of not allowing the eating of food on public transportation. We can see why the whole world looks down upon Chinese tourists.

What do you think?


Written by Jamie


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