Chinese Woman Presumed Dead For 10 Years, Found Living In Internet Cafe

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A woman who was presumed dead after she went missing 10 years ago has been found – allegedly spending the last decade living and playing games in Internet cafes.

The woman, known as Xiao Yun and now aged 24, left her home in the eastern Chinese province of Zhejiang 10 years ago after a quarrel with her parents.

Presumed dead by her family, she was finally found by police officers on Nov 20 after a routine check on an Internet cafe. Xiao Yun, who was carrying a fake identity card, was taken to a local police station for questioning where she revealed that she had been living in Internet cafes for the past decade. Even though living in an internet cafe seems bizarre, internet cafe refugees has actually become a big problem in Japan where workers are forced to move into tiny, dark cubicles because they can’t afford to rent a flat.

Tadayuki Sakai, 42, worked for a credit card company as a regular worker, known as salaryman, for 20 years. He moved to an internet cafe shortly after quitting his salaryman position. He currently works as telephone operator and temps at a friend’s computer systems company. The number of temporary low-paid workers without benefits and job security has surged in the last decade, reaching the third of Japan’s workforce. An income gap between lifetime workers and their poorer ‘temp” colleagues has widened significantly as they earn up to 40% less than those on full time contracts. Some temp workers hop from one job to another, sleep at 24-hour computer cafes because they have no money to pay rent between jobs.
42 Year old man living in an internet cafe after losing his job at a credit card company

A fan of the multiplayer first-person shooter game CrossFire, she spent her days playing the game and slept mostly in cafes and bath houses. She relied mostly on handouts from fellow cafe patrons and occasionally worked as a cashier at some cafes to earn additional income.

living in internet cafe

The police fined her and after initial resistance from her, contacted her parents so they could be reunited with their long-lost daughter.

Her mother told the Qianjiang Evening News that she had not changed her phone number since Xiao Yun left home, in the hope that she would contact her.

“I have a stubborn personality and a short temper, so I used to scold her. But it’s been 10 years and now she’s an adult. I will never scold her again,” she said.