BEIJING, June 13 (UPI) -- With Beijing hosting an important international summit in November, city authorities have begun a campaign to improve residents' manners.
The plan is to keep Beijing residents from embarrassing the country during a meeting of the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation forum, and officials believe it requires a "residents' mass civilization practice campaign."
"You should always say "hello" "thank you" and "sorry," said Tian Wensong at a press conference launching the campaign.
It has been noted that, despite China's claim of 5,000 years of civilization, Beijing residents spit excessively, litter, curse, jaywalk and cut in line. Lessons on manners preceded the 2008 Summer Olympics, held in Beijing, at which the practice of standing in line before boarding a bus was introduced.
"Most Beijingers now stand in line at bus stops of their own accord," said Tian's supervisor, Han Longbin.
The officials said "teach-ins" on waste disposal would be made available, as well as pledges to behave civilly and a school essay contest to "guide students to be brilliant, courteous, civilized and responsible Beijingers."