An ice bucket challenge has soaked Chinese internet celebrities including Youku Tudou chief executive Victor Koo, Xiaomi founder Lei Jun and Guokr.com chief executive Ji Xiaohua.
The challenge involves people pouring cold water over themselves and posting videos on the internet to raise money and awareness of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), commonly known as Lou Gehrig’s disease. The participants can challenge friends to do the same within 24 hours or donate US$100 to the ALS Association.
It has been making the rounds on US social websites for several weeks and inspired people like Bill Gates, Mark Zuckerberg and Tim Cook to dump a bucket of ice or cold water on their heads.
The fundraising game spread to Chinese microblog site Weibo.com on Sunday.
Koo, Lei, and Ji took the challenge and kicked off the trend among Chinese tech entrepreneurs.
Qihoo chief executive Zhou Hongyi and Smartisan Technology chief executive Luo Yonghao have accepted the dare but have not posted their videos yet.
Alibaba’s Jack Ma has also been nominated but he is yet to reply.
However, besides the original intention of calling for ALS awareness, the Chinese version of the challenge has widened the charity appeal.
“Please also raise concern about other rare diseases and make a donation to China-Dolls Center for Rare Disorders,” Ji said on his microblog while posting the video.
Zhou said perhaps a fundraising campaign could be initiated for anti-Japan war veterans.
According to the New York Times, people have shared more than 1.2 million videos on Facebook between June 1 and Aug. 13 and mentioned the phenomenon more than 2.2 million times on Twitter since July 29.
Meanwhile, donations to the ALS Association have reached US$13.3 million in the 19 days to Sunday, compared with US$1.7 million during the same period last year.
There are so far more than 61,000 microblog posts on Weibo.com discussing the ice bucket challenge.
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