How to be cool in Beijing

0086, August 2008

The August issue of 0086 promotes itself as a guide to the coolest stuff in Beijing. It's almost 300 pages worth of photos and articles about trendy people and places in the city.

0086, a glossy lifestyle magazine, piggy-backs on the publication license of Music Magazine (音乐大观), which is found on newsstands these days under the title Not Only Music (非音乐). It was launched at the end of 2007 by Song Ke, head of the Taihe Rye record label. Super Girl Li Yuchun, one of the label's artists, has been featured on the cover of two issues of the supplement 0086 Materialist (0086物质客), which isn't included with this issue.

Judging from the magazine's content, advertising, and distribution network, it seems to be targeted at young, urban 20-somethings: the consumers of the "post-80s" generation. Here's the English-language promo text from the back of the August issue, "Most Beijing" (their translation for 最北京):

The new beer and skittles of Beijing
The new high wave of Beijing
The amazing guidebook you have to read if you wanna to be Beijing, the period of validity is 2018

I ♥ Beijing
Beijing is a really really cool city
Groupie of Beijing and [sexy Beijing]
Night club of Beijing City
Flagship of International Luxury Brand in Beijing
Delicious dish of old Beijing
80's stylish youth of Beijing
0086 Beijing good restaurant
Learn to speak local language of Beijing
From viewpoint of Ai Weiwei about Beijing

That pretty much describes what's inside. There are brief interviews with famous Beijing denizens like Ai Weiwei, Hung Huang, Guo Degang, Muzimei, Shi Kang, and Han Han; tilt-shift miniature photographs of landmarks captioned in characters and pinyin; blog posts about city life, and capsule reviews of major restaurants, bars, and other destinations.

Much of the magazine is taken up by photos of people who live and work in Beijing, ranging from bun makers and retired blue-collar workers to designers and shopowners. Plus a "sexy Beijing" section featuring loads of pretty people in their early twenties who explain what they like best about the city.

Why all this expires in 2018 the magazine doesn't say. That's the year Beijing is supposed to achieve modernization and reach the standard of cities in developed countries (according to China's master plan for sustainable development), but that shouldn't put an end to the cool, should it?

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There are currently 3 Comments for How to be cool in Beijing.

Comments on How to be cool in Beijing

You'd have to pay me a lot of money to live in Beijing! But, you go right ahead!

to Magic Dragon
thank god! nobody is gonna pay you to live in beijing. beijing is for elites only, not losers.

"The new beer and skittles of Beijing"

Beijing has Skittlebraw? Well, that is cool. Where do I find it?

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