Many netizens have criticised her for not giving up her seat to the elderly lady standing beside her, or the girl sitting on the floor to her right.
The online attack has turned pretty savage, with some calling her derogatory names.
But the lady at the heart of the incident says there’s more to this picture than meets the eye.
In a Facebook post, Pingping Li said that she had boarded the train and sat on the reserved seat.
Subsequently, the elderly lady boarded the train together with the girl.
A woman who was seated opposite her asked the elderly lady if she would like to have a her seat, but the elderly lady refused.
Pinping Li says she too offered the elderly lady her seat but the offer was rejected, with the elderly lady saying she would be getting off the train soon.
She says the young girl also refused her offer of the reserved seat.
Pingping Li says she tried to engage the person who posted the picture online, but the poster wouldn’t reply to her.
Netizens have also criticised those who who merely snap pictures of “offenders” for not stepping forward to request that they vacate the reserved seats for those who need it more.