Wechat steel compassion plea goes viral

The plight of Chinese steel traders, hit hard by slack demand, depressed prices and an even more depressing industry outlook, has been highlighted in a message on Chinese social media site, Wechat.

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The concerned message, entitled 'How to care for a friend in the steel industry' urges friends and families of steel traders to be patient with loved ones, take them out to karaoke and avoid "sensitive subjects" like bonuses and vacations.

China's Wechat community – apparently well-attuned to the ups and downs of the steel market – have taken the message to heart, prompting the steel trader-care instruction brief to go viral.

Here's the (translated) message in full:

"If you have a friend who works in the steel industry, please care more about him – they're really struggling to survive.

"Please spend more time with him, ask him out for dinner or karaoke. It might be a good idea to pay for his bill when he's shopping. Understand he may be moody, and even grumpy from time to time. Do not mention any sensitive subjects such as salary, bonus or vacation.

"If he wants to go up to the rooftop, to a river, on a bridge or metro platform, please stay close with him because life is precious.

"It would be advisable to give him a hand at a time like this, by depositing some money into his account (minimum 1,000 yuan). Action speaks louder than words – it's the best way to show how good a friend you are. Or, you could choose to send him some gold (since the price is falling). Otherwise, you could at least pay for his phone bill.

"See, there are so many ways to express your consideration and kindness – surely there's at least one that suits you!"

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