Panda videos need mon­i­tor­ing

Broad­casts raise ‘ aware­ness’ about con­ser­va­tion

Global Times - - Front Page - By Zhao Yusha

Live broad­cast of gi­ant pan­das could raise pub­lic aware­ness about wildlife con­ser­va­tion, but broad­casts need to be mon­i­tored, ex­perts said, af­ter Chi­nese me­dia raised con­cerns that “the broad­casts have se­verely dis­turbed the nor­mal life of pan­das.”

The live round- the- clock broad­casts of gi­ant pan­das have gained great pop­u­lar­ity among ne­ti­zens in re­cent years.

How­ever, some me­dia out­lets dis­cov­ered that these live broad­casts have caused anx­i­ety among the pan­das and dis­turbed their life.

“Some sa­faris mis­treat the pan­das by stag­ing a show or us­ing them for com­mer­cial per­for­mances to garner hits and money,” Peo­ple’s Daily re­ported on Wed­nes­day.

More­over, some un­pro­fes­sional cam­era teams with lit­tle knowl­edge about the pan­das, vis­it­ing sa­faris or bases, se­verely dis­turb the pan­das’ life and scare them, ac­cord­ing to the Peo­ple’s Daily.

“Some pan­das seem ex­hausted be- cause of fre­quent live broad­casts,” the re­port said.

How­ever, an em­ployee from a panda base in South­west China’s Sichuan Prov­ince, told the Global Times on con­di­tion of anonymity that in his base the pan­das are never mis­treated for video shoot­ing.

“We have strict rules on the film­ing of the pan­das. Most of our videos are taken from the sur­veil­lance cam­eras, which are in­stalled ev­ery­where in the park, and they have no neg­a­tive im­pact on the pan­das at all,” said the em­ployee.

In 2013, the Chengdu Research Base of Gi­ant Panda Breed­ing in­stalled 28 high def­i­ni­tion video cam­eras, which en­able In­ter­net users around the world to watch daily ac­tiv­i­ties of the gi­ant pan­das liv­ing there, ac­cord­ing to the Peo­ple’s Daily.

More­over, the se­cu­rity per­son­nel of the base would warn cam­era crews to turn off their flash lights when vis­it­ing the baby pan­das, out of con­cern that the light can harm the baby pan­das’ eyes.

“Bases and sa­faris should be more cau­tious about the method of broad­cast­ing,” Zhao Huawen, founder of the Eude­mo­nia Bank, a Cheng­dubased or­ga­ni­za­tion ded­i­cated to pro­tect­ing panda habi­tat, told the Global Times on Wed­nes­day.

The gov­ern­ment and the pub­lic should in­ten­sify sur­veil­lance of these sa­faris and panda bases, and gov­ern­ment bod­ies should pun­ish rel­e­vant par­ties once they find any prob­lems with the live broad­casts, said Zhao.

But an­a­lysts said that it is nec­es­sary to make pan­das pop­u­lar on the In­ter­net as it draws pub­lic at­ten­tion to pro­tect­ing the en­dan­gered species.

“Apart from show­ing their adorable side to the pub­lic, it would dis­sem­i­nate use­ful in­for­ma­tion about the pan­das, such as their liv­ing habits and his­tory,” said Zhao.

Ac­cord­ing to the Peo­ple’s Daily, ipanda. com, a panda live broad­cast plat­form, at­tracts more than 200,000 view­ers on a daily ba­sis.

In Fe­bru­ary, hun­dreds of mil­lions of view­ers watched the video of a baby panda hold­ing the breeder’s leg, the re­port said.

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