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Wang Can: Influencer faces backlash for wasp eating video – Insider

A Chinese influencer has responded to backlash around a video of him appearing to a wasp live on camera, saying he wants to “start over” and post “positive videos” on social media following the controversy. 
The video, which is no longer available to view, was originally posted to the Chinese video-sharing platform Douyin earlier this month, according to the South China Morning Post. It showed the influencer, known by the name Wang Can, holding a wasp with a pair of chopsticks, putting the creature in his mouth, and reacting abruptly as though in pain. 
The video then cut to a close-up of Wang’s face, in which his lips and face appeared swollen. In a subsequent video posted later that same day on the influencer’s secondary Douyin account, he appeared with his face slightly less swollen.  
According to SCMP, Wang’s primary Douyin account, which reportedly had 560,000 followers, was suspended by the platform shortly after he uploaded the controversial video. Douyin declined to respond to Insider’s request for confirmation, but the influencer’s account, where he used the username, 王灿, and the original video, are no longer available to view on the platform. 
But a clip from the original video was reuploaded on Douyin, with a caption that referred to the influencer as having lips like “sausages.” Users mocked the influencer and also expressed concern about the implications of the video in the comments section, writing primarily in Mandarin. 
“Although it is funny, I am afraid that others will imitate it. It’s a pity,” one comment said, according to a translation from Yandex
On Twitter and TikTok, versions of the clip have been retweeted by various users who questioned the influencer’s actions and speculated that he must “regret” making the video. 
Wang posted a video statement on Douyin on September 6, translated by Insider, in which he said: “First, I want to thank everyone for their support. Now I will be using this channel to give you some updates and some quality positive videos for everyone. I will not admit defeat, I won’t fall. I, Wang Can, do not lack the courage to start over.” =
Influencers in China have faced backlash in the past for posting controversial videos involving eating unusual or endangered animals in the past. In August, a Chinese streamer was reportedly put under police investigation following a video in which she ate a great white shark, which is a protected species in China. In May 2021, a food blogger from the Hainan province was detained for reportedly eating an endangered sea snail, according to China Central Television
Insider was unable to contact Wang Can for comment. 
Michele Theil assisted with translation. 
For more stories like this, check out coverage from Insider’s Digital Culture team here. 
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