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An article in today’s South China Morning Post demonstrates how ecommerce has become a solid foundation of modern economics:

Chinese e-commerce platforms are scrambling to hire thousands of temporary workers, as the coronavirus outbreak and government-imposed travel restrictions have increased consumer demand for online grocery delivery services.

Their recruitment initiatives include hiring part-time staff from small firms and restaurants, whose operations are currently struggling amid the health crisis and general business slowdown.

A child waves as she sits in a vehicle carrying residents evacuated from a public housing building, following the outbreak of the novel coronavirus, outside Hong Mei House, at Cheung Hong Estate in Hong Kong, China February 11, 2020. REUTERS/Tyrone Siu TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY

Ecommerce is trying to absorb the impact of a virus that has quarantined entire cities. Ecommerce also has the lack of skill or willpower to patrol itself:

(This article originally appeared on ABACUS)

As the death toll of the coronavirus outbreak climbs, face masks have become a valuable commodity. Now unscrupulous sellers are starting to rise. Two of the biggest Chinese ecommerce companies, Alibaba and JD.com, said they’re clearing their platforms of shops selling “problematic” masks. 

Alibaba announced on Weibo that it removed 15 merchants for selling fake or inferior masks and reported five of them to the authorities. JD removed seven merchants, according to state media reports.
Alibaba also said it removed 570,000 mask listings suspected to be problematic and is cooperating with the police to home in on shoddy mask manufacturers.