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Because of the coronavirus, most schools in China won’t open until further notice. But many students have already begun learning again, only from home.

Teachers are using online platforms to hold live-streaming courses remotely. Alibaba’s DingTalk is now not only a virtual workspace for companies, but also a live streaming platform for over 12 million students.

However, DingTalk was filled with one-star reviews as some students didn’t want their holiday to end so quickly. Many students wrote ironic reviews such as: “I love DingTalk so much”; “Thank you DingTalk for letting us have live-streaming lessons when the winter holiday is postponed. Good app.”

Online education companies are working with schools to offer free classes during the epidemic. China’s Ministry of Education has worked with 22 education platforms to open more than 24,000 online courses for free.

At least 20 listed companies have announced plans to “donate” classes. Short video platform Kuaishou is working with over 40 multiple online education platforms. They will provide free educational content to mitigate the impact of the school suspension.

Alibaba’s Youku and DingTalk launched a “study at home” program. After Feb 10, primary and middle school students nationwide will be able to attend free classes at home by logging in to apps.

Shi Jiayi is the Shanghai-based visual reporter helping provide multimedia elements about China’s fast-changing technology and culture. She holds a B.A. in Convergence Journalism from the University...

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