China’s Gay Sex Clubs Exposed – Part 1

The Extraordinary Tale of China’s Gay KTV

Some of the more intriguing short videos I occasionally come across when going through gay tumblr sites are those allegedly set in gay KTV clubs in China. Obviously filmed with a cell phone and of poor quality, they nevertheless are way more than eye-popping. Decades ago it was common to watch guys dancing naked in Bangkok’s gay go-go bars. Nowadays the only nudity you are likely to see is during the nightly shows. Yet these KTV videos show large numbers of young Chinese guys dancing totally in the nude. Even more surprisingly, they interact with customers with mutual blowjobs, games, masturbation and even the collection of cum in a glass!

Young Guys Waiting Naked in a Chinese Gay KTV – Click to see full sized image – tumblr.com

Young Guys Waiting Naked in a Chinese Gay KTV – Click to see full sized image – tumblr.com

KTV clubs are to be found all over Asia. They are primarily places where individuals and groups go to drink and sing karaoke. Getting drunk and parting with a sizeable wad of cash is part of the ritual. Having made a few visits to Beijing and Shanghai, I know of its gay bars and small number of gay-friendly saunas. But gay KTV was so off my gaydar I did not believe so many young men were actually cavorting so openly in China. Surely it had to be another country?

Perhaps it might be Taiwan, I thought. Back in 1990, one City Councilman said, “Taipei is a city of lust!” I knew that the many barber shops with spinning red and white striped poles outside once offered male customers a lot more inside than just a shave or a haircut. Nowadays it is in many straight KTV clubs where such services are offered.

After a quick check on the internet, I realised I was wrong! Whatever happens in any gay KTV establishment in Taiwan (if indeed any exist), it is nothing compared to the sexual activity going on in those in China. Originally, like Taiwan, KTV was where men could enjoy the company of young ladies. With a population of over eight million, KTVs in the industrial city of Dongguan between Hong Kong and Guangzhou are known to be a major den of female vice. Now the KTV market has expanded with clubs in many cities catering to men wishing to spend time with men.

KTV Guys Waiting to Go to Work – tumblr.com

KTV Guys Waiting to Go to Work – tumblr.com

Helix Studios

Quite by accident I came across a fascinating but extremely long 44-page dissertation on the internet, a 2016 thesis written by a Chinese expatriate, Zhang Hai-lin, for his doctorate at the University of Wageningen in The Netherlands. Titled “Space, Sexuality and Power: Producing a Gay KTV in China”, I almost dismissed it. Once I had started reading, though, the more fascinating it became.

The writer is a gay man who had lived in Shanghai for 20 years and had participated in the gay scene for ten. He tells how this has been influenced partly by changing attitudes to the LGBT agenda in the rest of the world, but more by those in Hong Kong and Taiwan. In explaining the background to these KTVs and what happens within, much of what follows are exact quotes (in blue) from Zhang’s thesis.

Unlike those KTVs in Western countries where there is only one stage for a small number of people to sing and others to watch, KTV in China provides a large room, which is to some extent a private space, and several kinds of entertainments for different groups of customers, and makes it a very popular place in China for friends to gather.

Straight KTV Clubs Take Kitsch to Extreme Lengths (note the da Vinci!)

Straight KTV Clubs Take Kitsch to Extreme Lengths (note the da Vinci!)

In gay KTV Clubs, he explains, there are the managers, foremen and Xiaodis.
‘Xiaodi’ means ‘little brother’ in Chinese. Usually customers are senior to those who provide erotic services; the social appellation for them in Chinese culture is ‘Dage’, which means ‘big brother’. ‘Xiaodi’ and ‘Dage’ not only show the age gap between the serving and the served, but also the hierarchy in a way that ‘Xiaodi’ immediately makes customers feel superior and assures the obedience, and the friendly tone of ‘Dage’ narrows the distance between two sides. Another reason they become the appellations to the two sides in gay KTV is because they desexualize what they do. Other appellations, such as ‘money boy’, which directly show the money-exchanged sexual relationship between them, are hard to be accepted by either actor in gay KTV; ‘Xiaodi’ and ‘Dage’, in contrast, are neutral and have no implications of sexual relationship.

KTV Club in Harbin in North-east China - wikipedia.com

KTV Club in Harbin in North-east China – wikipedia.com

The foremen are the equivalent of mamasans in Thai go-go bars. One foreman explains that there are at least three or four gay KTVs in Shanghai. None is in the central area but all are easily reached by public transport. Equally all are in inconspicuous buildings. The owners realise they are treading a fine line with the authorities. In the Q&A excerpts that follow, the initials HL stand for the author Zhang Hua-lin. MZ is a 33-year old man, a frequent gay KTV customer who assisted Zhang with the interviews. The interviewees are also identified only by their initials.

HL: “As far as you know, how is the relationship between KTV and the police?”
MZ: “Just bribery, so that they will not go and find trouble for KTVs; also if there is inspection, the police would let KTVs know in advance, so that they can cover.”
HL: “Will it ensure the safety of KTVs if they have this relationship with the police? Under what circumstance they will still get inspected?”
MZ: “Then it might because you were not able to reach the higher level of the police, or the competitors give more money to the police. But even if one gets shut down, they can still open at another place with a new name and the same boss easily.”

Guy Waiting to Entertain KTV Customers – tumblr.com

Guy Waiting to Entertain KTV Customers – tumblr.com

Tea money to the police authorities seems an Asia-wide practice. This foreman denies that what they offer in the gay KTVs is basically illegal, but adds the owners have to be careful not to push the boundaries of acceptance too far.

MZ: “What is the background of the boss of a gay KTV, and how would he have a place like this?”
Foreman NF: (42-year old with 5-years experience in the gay KTV business): “Bosses of the earliest gay KTVs are those who own businesses like gay bar, sauna or massage parlours. They earned some money from this, and know some money boys, so opened a place like this to broaden their business. Later some bosses outside the industry wanted to do some investment, so they just put money for it and don’t get involved in the running of the business.”

Returning to the issue of the police and the possibility of raids, Zhang probes further.
Foreman NF: “Let’s say we are now inspected by the police; we have to know how to deal with it. For example, Xiaodis can be naked, and we can say people are having fun; it does not matter since people in the room are all men, that does not count as a crime of obscenity. And we try to prevent anal sex in the room, otherwise it is a crime of group licentiousness. Beside, as a foreman, I do not get involve with customers’ taking Xiaodi out; it only happens on their voluntary willingness. I do not get commissions from this, so it is not a crime of organizational prostitution.”

Police Vice Raid on a Straight KTV Club in Dongguan close to Hong Kong - cnn.com

Police Vice Raid on a Straight KTV Club in Dongguan close to Hong Kong – cnn.com

Yet again there is the similarity to Thailand where prostitution is also illegal. The Chinese KTVs and Thai bars do not get involved with what happens after a guy agrees to go with a customer for a more intimate sexual encounter or with the tip that will be provided.

MZ: “What about foremen then? How do they enter the business?”
Foreman NF: “There are two types of how a foreman enters the business. One is, for example, like me, who used to work in a heterosexual KTV, and I happened to know the boss here, so I moved here. Gay KTV earns more than heterosexual ones. My advantage is that I already have resources of money boys who I can introduce here. It really does not matter for them who they serve. Also I am better at persuading new Xiaodis, to teach them some skills. Another type, which is becoming more and more common, is experienced Xiaodis who are able to recruit their own teams and promote themselves to foremen.”

Scene from the Movie “Lost in Translation” showing Bill Murray Singing in a Japanese KTV Club with Scarlett Johansson – Focus Features

Scene from the Movie “Lost in Translation” showing Bill Murray Singing in a Japanese KTV Club with Scarlett Johansson – Focus Features

In Part 2 next week, we will look in more detail at Zhang Hai-lin’s discussions with the two most important groups in a Chinese KTV Club – the customers and the Xiaodis. To whet your appetite, take a look at these two links and get a glimpse of what really goes on inside these Chinese gay KTV clubs.

Both Links Contain Nudity: VIDEO 1VIDEO 2

Read More: Part 1Part 2

(c) AsiaGuys.NET

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