996 => working 9 a.m. to 9 p.m., 6 days a week
"Not so long ago, 996 symbolized possibility for Chinese tech entrepreneurs. Their country had the vast market. And increasingly, it had the engineering talent. The secret ingredient, the one that supposedly set China’s companies apart from Silicon Valley’s, was the hustle.‘996’ Is China’s Version of Hustle Culture. Tech Workers Are Sick of It. | NYT
While China requires overtime pay, the laws are haphazardly enforced, and the tech industry usually insists workers are committing their time voluntarily.
But hustle is harder to demand of workers in a bear market. Internet darlings have laid off employees. A torrent of venture investment in tech has slowed to a trickle. As China’s internet industry matures, giant companies like Alibaba and Tencent are looking more like monopolists whose world-swallowing dominance leaves little room for upstarts."