I've been in Shanghai for less than 24 hours and though it's been awesome, the quantity and persistence of scammers is way beyond my expectations. I read the forum posts and I still wasn't ready for how annoying and non stop it is. I've been asked at least 50 times if I want a massage or a woman. I've also been approached by pairs of young women. The first time they seemed so nice. They asked me to take their picture with their cellphone. They were tourists. They were sweet and charming and spoke English well. They gave me tips on Shanghai. How could I be rude? They asked all kinds of questions about where I was from and what I did for a living. Suddenly the conversation switched to a tea festival and groups of interesting minorities who would be there. That's when I realized they were scammers. They tried to talk me out of what I had planned for the day and come with them. I didn't. I was approached by a second pair outside the subway at Yu Yuan Gardens. Same approach. Will I take their picture? I did but handed them back their phone and walked away. When I got a few yards away and turned and saw them asking a group of German tourists who had been on the subway if they would take their picture. They seemed to be falling for it. Once I got yo Yu Yuan I was approached by a very nice man who was around 60. We started to chat. He seemed very intelligent and quite knowledgeable about Shanghai. He showed me a couple of places, told me about his family and was pretty interesting. He was very persistent about showing me views and a Taoist Temple. When I asked him what he wanted he told me that if he were ever in Los Angeles that I would be helpful to him. We spent more than an hour together and I had enough but how could I be rude to such a sweet, smart, interesting man close to my age? I finally told him I had another appointment and would have to leave. Of course suddenly he asked for 20 Yuan, not much for all the information and time he gave me but I was still bothered by his dishonesty and called him on it. His sheepish response was "That's how things are done in Shanghai." I gave him his money and left. All these experiences have left me wanting to be rude to anyone who approaches me. That's not how I like to start my time here. Beijing had a few similar folks, mostly young women who claimed to be artists. Still, it was nothing like Shanghai. You are constantly bombarded with it... At least at the couple of locations I've been so far.