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Specially made, short-format reality shows are serving up staple mealtime companionship, Xing Wen reports.

By Xing Wen | China Daily Global | Updated: 2023-03-22 08:32

Pop idol Wang Yuan (middle) on the reality show Mao Xue Woof last year.[Photo provided to China Daily]

Pickled vegetables, which add a unique tangy and savory flavor to dishes, are often used as a condiment or ingredient in Chinese cuisine. In recent years, the online phrase, "digital pickled vegetables", has been widely used by young people to describe the videos they often watch during mealtime. Generally, the content of such videos is geared toward everyday life and doesn't require much cognitive effort, making it easy to watch and enjoy.

Their relaxed style and pacing, and lack of gimmicks or dramatic conflicts, may help stimulate appetite, provides psychological comfort, and offers entertainment and relaxation.

For many viewers, especially those urban dwellers who live alone, such "digital pickled vegetables" can be consumed as a form of companionship during meals.

To echo this trend, many video producers have started creating entertaining programs that exhibit the aforementioned traits and have a duration comparable to the average time it takes to finish a meal.

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