Authorities in China have decided to publicly shame visitors caught defacing the country's most famous monument, the Great Wall, in a bid to discourage them from vandalising the icon.
Great Wall vandalised on reopening day
A portion of the Great Wall, the popular Badaling section, re-opened on March 24, two months after it was closed due to the coronavirus outbreak. However, the very same day it opened, a tourist was reportedly captured on camera defacing the UNESCO World Heritage site using a key.
The video showing the visitor vandalising the historic monument went viral on China's Twitter-like platform Weibo and sparked massive uproar from Chinese citizens, which caused the hashtag #八达岭长城恢复开放首日被刻字, which translates to "Great Wall vandalised the first day it reopened," to become a trending topic on the platform. Check out the video below:
"How could such uncivilized behavior happen repeatedly?" asked Weibo user Wuhan Luyoujia on a discussion board. "I think these people should be arrested and locked away for five days so they would remember the lesson."
The tourist in the video was identified as a juvenile, who confessed to her destructive and unruly behaviour. If the offence is classified as a criminal act, violators will be handed over to to the police in accordance with law.
Authorities to release tourist 'blacklist'
In response, The Great Wall Office has rolled out a series of disciplinary measures, which went into effect on Monday, April 6, to deal with vandalism and rowdy visitors.
According to the Yanqing County Badaling Special Zone Office's Weibo account, those who are caught intentionally damaging the site, such as scratching or carving into the wall, will have to pay heavy administrative penalties.
Misbehaving tourists will then be added to a blacklist that will be announced to the public regularly to "increase awareness and apply pressure [on tourists] with public opinion."
Offenders will also face restrictions when they try to purchase online tickets to the Great Wall in the future and The Information Office of the Beijing Municipal Government said they're also considering banning the blacklisted tourists from entering other tourist attractions in the district.