Sonntag, Oktober 30, 2005

Editorial Integrity?


Wendy Cheng and her "trophy"....

It was the Straits Times; it was on page four; it was supposed to be the next blogging controversy--this time involving a high-profile blogger.

In the end, what was published in the Sunday Times was a lame, one-sided affair seemingly written by a Xiaxue apologist.

No disrespect intended for the reporter Jeremy Au Yong, but having read his article on the "controversy", I really wonder what do they mean by objective journalism.

To add insult to injury, two local charitable organisations even gave their support for Wendy: "Blogger Wendy Cheng found support from two unlikely groups. The Society for the Physically Disabled as well as the Handicaps Welfare Aossciation see nothing wrong with sharing toilets meant for the handicapped, as long as the able-bodied give priority to the disabled."

I really like to know if Mr Au Yong faxed these two societies Wendy's blog entry in its entirety; if he did, whether they actually read it. For to lend their support to Wendy--after what she's written--is bad publicity for them. I for one am not going to donate to an organisation that can't tell the difference between right and wrong.


Jeremy wrote: "Her critics argued taht the toilets should not be dirtied by the abled-bodied who had many more cubicles from which to pick and use."

However, the only critic quoted in the article? Peter Tan, the 39-year-old Malaysian blogger (and a disabled himself), who wrote to Wendy's sponsors complaining about her article. Yes, a Malaysian, as noted by the Straits Times.

What about the local critics? There were more locals who spoke against Wendy than Malaysians, so why not ask at least one of them for their opinions? Also, Netizens turned against Wendy not because she thought it's fine to share disabled toilets.

It's the disdain and contempt she showed for the disabled when she wrote her blog entry that riled people. Why not quote excerpts from her blog entry and let readers decide who's right or wrong?

Not a single word Wendy wrote was published; and Peter Tan was the lone voice speaking out against Wendy in the article. In mitigation, Wendy not only had the two local societies offering their support, but also LocalBrand founder Turodrique Fuad, who told the Straits Times that the issue "has been blown out of proportion" and "there was noting intentionally malicious about her post". They also got Wendy for a her comment, who said: "I don't think I have projected something that is extreme and I will write exactly the way I've always done."

Even the facts that Mr Au Yong brought up in his article don't give the full picture. I'm not questionnig Mr Au Yong's professional integrity, but there are certain points in the article that needs to be addressed:

Mr Au Yong wrote: "Ms Cheng is known for speaking her mind. She has written about measuring penises and evangelising, and poked fun at the nude pictures posted by a blogger writing as Sarong Party Girl."

Wendy can ramble on about measuring penises, she can make fun of Sarong Party Girl and even Furong Jie; fact is, we don't care. But she has written expletive-laden entries on far more senstive issues than a toilet cubicle--and the Straits Times didn't even mention one of them.

What about Wendy's recent entry on students who blog about their teachers--she openly encouraged wayward behaviour in students by telling them to go against their educators, and even taught them how to do it under a cloak of anonymity. And what about her racist remarks about Arabs and Malays which she later edited despite all her talk of editorial integrity?

Did Mr Au Yong read these entries before he wrote his article? Did he speak to Wendy's critics, who would've pointed them out to him? And if he did, why didn't he mention them, when they can give a truer picture of the sort of person Wendy is, and why people are so upset over this whole incident.

"While none would reveal the amount paid, the two endorsements are worth a three-figure sum to Ms. Cheng," he wrote.

Yes, it's a small sum, but before people start questioning why her critics are trying to deny her even this amount, they NEED to know why she doesn't deserve anything in the first place.

Maybe it's me, but the Sunday Times article has done a great disservice to its readers by painting Wendy as a victim when she's not.

Hats off to the Straits Times for a job well done, and for giving us such an objective view (sarcasm intended).

I'm sure Wendy will thank you for that. We won't.

39 Comments:

  • At Sonntag, Oktober 30, 2005 6:02:00 nachm., Blogger xialanxue said…

    I'm going to link this up. Like I told shaolintiger, only cooperative grassroots action will allow our voices to be heard.

     
  • At Sonntag, Oktober 30, 2005 6:18:00 nachm., Anonymous Anonym said…

    It's disgraceful, the article that is.

     
  • At Sonntag, Oktober 30, 2005 6:40:00 nachm., Anonymous Anonym said…

    The ST article could be written by anyone who hadn't read her blog.

    Peds

     
  • At Sonntag, Oktober 30, 2005 6:55:00 nachm., Anonymous Anonym said…

    the article isn't a disgrace, you are.

    you claim to be a communications student, why are being so hard on another journalist? he's just doing his job, and he might not be that familair with the blogosphere. btw, he did want to interview peter tan, but the latter chose to decline, what can he do? cut and copy from peter tan's blog? sure, why not cut and paste his entry about "menses dribbling down your thighs" comment? sure shows what sort of man peter is.

    why not quote kimberly for calling jess stupid? better still, why not quote peter tan for calling jess stupid?

    from my point of view, xiaxue wasn't offensive in her post. to me, it was a post about rude people, and it just so happens that the person happened to be disabled. it was peter tan and kimberly that blew things out of proportion by nitpicking on words.

    and fyi, the journalist didn't said peter tan was diabled, he was pretty nice about it, he said peter tan is paralysed, or something like that.

    also, xx edits her blog entries, and all racist remarks on her blog previously, most probably have been edited. how would this journalist know? not everyone dedicates so much of their time (like you) on xx's blogs.

    are you trying to get him fired?

     
  • At Sonntag, Oktober 30, 2005 7:09:00 nachm., Anonymous kyra said…

    of course nobody is bothered to read comments anymore so maybe you would like to know why peter quoted the menses dribbling down the thighs.

    http://www.petertan.com/blog/index.php/2005/06/21/blatant-abuse-of-disabled-toilets/#comment-3061

    that was why mah. i am either too nice, have nothing else better to do or i did thought that there is a reason why he go say like that. no need to thank me.

     
  • At Sonntag, Oktober 30, 2005 7:58:00 nachm., Blogger simplesandra said…

    anon wrote: "you claim to be a communications student, why are being so hard on another journalist? he's just doing his job, and he might not be that familair with the blogosphere."

    Precisely because I was a communications student, I should be critical of a journalist who, in my opinion, should've written a more objective article. If he is unfamiliar with the blogsphere, he should speak to those who are; Peter Tan has linked his blog to numerous related articles--why didn't the journalist ask these people for their opinions? That's what objective journalism is about.

    ST readers aren't familiar with blogging either, so they're relying on the journalist to present the other side of the argument that's going on in the blogsphere. He didn't do that, and didn't even quote or refer to Wendy's offending article.

    Like I mentinoned--it wasn't the topic that got people all fired up, it was Wendy's tone and words. And this whole incident is an accumulation of a lot of nasty things she wrote before.

    anon wrote: "from my point of view, xiaxue wasn't offensive in her post."

    Let me quote Wendy: "As far as I am concerned, you have a physical disability - and that is where you have a disadvantage. Your bladder is working fine isn't it? So you wait, just like normal people do, when there is a queue for the toilet. The rest of us queue up to use a toilet - I don't see why the disabled should be any different."

    This isn't about giving way to a disabled. This is about telling him to quietly wait while you help yourself to using a disabled toilet. The idea itself is bad enough, and so is the tone. Maybe you can explain why this, and the rest of her article, isn't in bad taste.

    What's worse, Wendy still insists she's right from the start.

    anon wrote: "and fyi, the journalist didn't said peter tan was diabled, he was pretty nice about it, he said peter tan is paralysed, or something like that.

    The word "disabled" is a politically-correct term for people with a permanent illness or injury that makes it hard for them to use part of their body. It's "handicapped" that has become rather offensive in some places.

    anon wrote: "also, xx edits her blog entries, and all racist remarks on her blog previously, most probably have been edited. how would this journalist know? not everyone dedicates so much of their time (like you) on xx's blogs."

    As far as I know, she hasn't edited the few entries I brought up (not yet). And if the journalist doesn't know, why can't he find out--again, by speaking to those people who wrote to Wendy's sponsors? If Wendy did change them and still claim innocence, that proves a lot about her integrity, and blows away her defence (and seemingly, the article's) that she's been hard done. That it's much-ado-about-nothing.

    About me dedicating my time to Wendy's blog, don't flatter her, please. A couple of minutes a day on her blog (and her critics')doesn't make me "obsessed".

    No, I'm not trying to get Mr Au Yong fired. Journalists can make more serious mistakes and get away with just a tongue lashing. I'm just pointing out what he may have gotten wrong.

     
  • At Sonntag, Oktober 30, 2005 10:49:00 nachm., Anonymous Anonym said…

    I written to Jeremy Au yong..clearly he was being very subjective towards xx...it seem no bad press can ever befall xx..i wonder why?

     
  • At Sonntag, Oktober 30, 2005 11:54:00 nachm., Anonymous toenail said…

    why am i not surprise at ST's move? sheesh.

     
  • At Montag, Oktober 31, 2005 2:15:00 vorm., Anonymous Anonym said…

    Agreed

     
  • At Montag, Oktober 31, 2005 3:23:00 vorm., Anonymous Anonym said…

    the reporter were rushing his ass-ignment, no time to research. so simply pass up his work .

     
  • At Montag, Oktober 31, 2005 9:20:00 vorm., Blogger xialanxue said…

    you guys can forward me your emails to Jeremy if you want.

     
  • At Montag, Oktober 31, 2005 12:55:00 nachm., Anonymous Darth BiRdYz said…

    Well written post. For a moment I was wonder what this 'holy war' against xiasuay was all about.

    Now I have a better idea. Sadly, the fanatics going gah gah over xiasuay would think all of us being difficult. I am already seeing some personal attacks on 'simplesandra'.

    For starters, whether she is a mass comm student has nothing to do with this matter. For those who wants to defend their goddess, xiasuay, use whatever little brains you have lah. :)

     
  • At Montag, Oktober 31, 2005 4:44:00 nachm., Anonymous Sarah said…

    Here's a comment i posted on xialanxue:

    "I've written to the two organizations to seek for clarifications as i found the statement quoted in the article to be too loosely worded and on the edge of a slippery slope."

    Just thought that instead of writing to the ST, perhaps we could address the issue directly with the organizations concerned. As many have mentioned, they may not know her or read any of her offensive remarks to know the implications.

     
  • At Dienstag, November 01, 2005 2:24:00 vorm., Anonymous Darth BiRdYz said…

    There's another thing I don't understand. How does the ST come to the conclusion that the charitable organisations are giving their 'support' simply by saying that they 'see nothing wrong with sharing toilets meant for the handicapped, as long as the able-bodied give priority to the disabled'?

    I mean, I also see nothing wrong with sharing the toilets, but I do see something wrong with the way she denigrate those two handicapped people when they are not in the wrong.

    This reminds me of some undergrad 3 weeks ago who wrote an indignant letter to the Sunday Times justifying why undergrads aren't giving up seats to a lady carrying a baby.

    Anyway, I think the 2 organisations are misrepresented but I doubt they will do anything after what happened to Durai. hiak hiak...

     
  • At Dienstag, November 01, 2005 3:39:00 vorm., Anonymous Anonym said…

    hi sandra i noticed that you have labels for such bloggers as "vanity writers". would you consider upcoming blogger clapbangkiss (xanga.com/clapbangkiss) as one or not? and what do you think of her encouraging the advantages of cosmetic surgery to her readers who are unaware that she is a plastic beauty?

     
  • At Dienstag, November 01, 2005 10:51:00 vorm., Anonymous gross said…

    Yuck! What's wrong with that clapbangkiss girl's face? There is no way that nose can be real. Creepy plastic!

     
  • At Dienstag, November 01, 2005 1:17:00 nachm., Anonymous RosLyn said…

    Clapbangkiss has never hurt anyone, unlike xx with her blogging. Please do not use the excuse of social good (eg. what do you think of her encouraging the advantages of cosmetic surgery to her readers who are unaware that she is a plastic beauty?)
    to get others against her to satisfy your personal agenda.

     
  • At Dienstag, November 01, 2005 1:46:00 nachm., Anonymous Anonym said…

    did the blogger clapbangkiss really support plastic surgery?

    can anyone be kind enough to link me to the blog entry???

     
  • At Dienstag, November 01, 2005 3:38:00 nachm., Anonymous Anonym said…

    She has never made any comments about that in her blog, its only other people's conclusion from her photos. Just goes to show how an irresponsible line like "what do you think of her encouraging the advantages of cosmetic surgery to her readers who are unaware that she is a plastic beauty?", can imply she did.

     
  • At Dienstag, November 01, 2005 4:22:00 nachm., Anonymous delia said…

    How can she be encouraging plastic surgery if her readers, as you so claimed, are "UNAWARE that she is a plastic beauty"?

     
  • At Dienstag, November 01, 2005 7:15:00 nachm., Anonymous tesla said…

    Who needs clapbangkiss when you have the likes of Michael Jackson and Elizabeth Taylor around? ;)

     
  • At Dienstag, November 01, 2005 7:40:00 nachm., Anonymous yuni said…

    I guess what he or she means is tt clapbangkiss is plastic but some readers are still too blind to see it for eg a so-called 'clapbangkiss fan'. She has many pictures of herself and each post starts off with her pic.

     
  • At Mittwoch, November 02, 2005 12:12:00 vorm., Anonymous Cassandra said…

    Wendy's latest entry - "FOR TWENTY BUCKS! Yeah, I know it's an imitation Guess watch (which I have a real one of, but in gold), but I needed a cheap watch to bring to Thailand, so I bought this one!"

    So much for being poor. Flaming liar! :|

     
  • At Mittwoch, November 02, 2005 5:31:00 vorm., Anonymous Anonym said…

    Wendy's latest entry - "FOR TWENTY BUCKS! Yeah, I know it's an imitation Guess watch (which I have a real one of, but in gold), but I needed a cheap watch to bring to Thailand, so I bought this one!"

    I borrowed the above quote from Cassandra. :)

    Anyway, that's a total misconception about Thai people. I have stayed in Thailand for about 2 years and I have never been mugged.

    What's that Wendy person trying to imply by saying that she bought a cheapass watch to travel to Thailand for?

    Puleeze, the Thais in Bangkok are better dressed than her to even want to rob her belongings.

    Just from words like what she spouted, you can tell that she really is not well-travelled and yet assumes too much for her own good.

    I can guess what she would write if she were to go to say Europe or America. "Oh, I will have to carry my LV Multicolour Theda in White and blend in with the rest of them high class beings".

    I seriously think she has this major problem of very low self esteem which is why she is attempting to cover up by 'acting' confident, applying tons of make-up, and perpetually looking down on those people she deems as lesser beings than herself.

    And people whom she thinks are more worthy and better than her? Umm, I think you can tell from her blog entries. She probably doesn't even know that the guys from the singapore tv reality show are dissing and laughing at her everytime i meet up with them.

    anywayz, i do hope that she will really GROW up as in mentally and not physically (cos I doubt she can anymore).

    Her entries are really getting from bad to worse.

    Btw, I first read her entry because a special guest who appeared in her entry asked me "Go take a look at my pictures at this makeup full midget's blog. Also take a look at her face but remember not to put any food in your mouth before looking".

    I'm not going to say who. But i kind of pity her in a way that the people she would like to be around with think she is a joke.

    I myself wouldn't want to end up in a situation like her. It's really sad.

     
  • At Mittwoch, November 02, 2005 7:52:00 vorm., Anonymous joanna said…

    for someone who hates xiaxue soooo much, it seems that you spend all ur time online talking about her and looking her up.

    i dun get it. why do ppl waste their time trying to be so moral and preachy?

    as if YOU are soooo good.

     
  • At Mittwoch, November 02, 2005 12:04:00 nachm., Anonymous Anonym said…

    'i dun get it. why do ppl waste their time trying to be so moral and preachy?

    as if YOU are soooo good. '

    here we go again, the holier-than-thou debate. you don't have to be oh-soooo-good to criticize XX. You only have to be a better character than her, which isn't difficult.

     
  • At Mittwoch, November 02, 2005 12:10:00 nachm., Anonymous Anonym said…

    To Joanna who replied presumably to me

    "for someone who hates xiaxue soooo much, it seems that you spend all ur time online talking about her and looking her up.

    i dun get it. why do ppl waste their time trying to be so moral and preachy?

    as if YOU are soooo good."

    For your 1st paragraph, I do NOT hate her. Hate is a strong word. But I just think that she is pretty sad and rather than hate, I'd like to use the word 'pity' on her. Also, I normally surf blogs when I'm in the bathroom to you know. It doesn't take much time and effort, trust me.

    For your 2nd paragraph, I'm not trying to be moral but rather, just stating some facts that some people living outside of XX's world will know.

    For your last paragraph, yeah I'm not so good, but I'm uber good. :)


    So yeah, thanks for your time to read my comment on XX and visiting a site that specifically disses XX. Run along now, little one. Go do your studying, hanging out or whatever. You are so adorable, Joanna.

    No wonder I have no desire in having kids.


    :)

     
  • At Mittwoch, November 02, 2005 12:40:00 nachm., Anonymous Abraham said…

    I think WC should really think hard and re-assess her life.

     
  • At Mittwoch, November 02, 2005 1:26:00 nachm., Anonymous john doe said…

    Latest from XX's blog-"It is pointless, colourful, and superficial - but I'm sure everyone loves photologs anyway. Except people who don't have unlimited bandwidth... But those are losers, and I don't speak to losers so don't ask me to fathom how they will think... *shrugs*"

    More stupidity from the single-parent, money-hard-to-come-by, brother-got-no-room moron.
    If neutrals and her fans still don't geddit, it's this sort of hypocrisy and attitude that make people despise her.

     
  • At Mittwoch, November 02, 2005 6:25:00 nachm., Anonymous Fucking Rebel said…

    Latest from XX's blog-"It is pointless, colourful, and superficial - but I'm sure everyone loves photologs anyway. Except people who don't have unlimited bandwidth... But those are losers, and I don't speak to losers so don't ask me to fathom how they will think... *shrugs*"

    Seriously she have got some real serious attitude problem, just becos people don't have a unlimited bandwidth, they are losers? Come on, it take one loser to know another loser.

    She is really pissing more people off in her blog entries recently. Duh... as if I care...

     
  • At Donnerstag, November 03, 2005 3:18:00 nachm., Anonymous Anonym said…

    Oh my oh my...
    the first time I read her blog when it was published in the straits time way way back.. I was so disgusted that I actually posted comments...but it was deleted. Anyway, I tried posting to tomorrow.sg ..and guess what.. it was never published..haha..
    Anyway.. when can we ever get this obnoxious gal out of public eye. She always insists on editorial integrity.. but she must also be aware of social responsibility as a public figure. You don't hear our MPs or any public figure go around spouting nonsense.
    i THINk if there's any more public campaign with her being the spokewoman, I would definitely write in to the relevant authority to discourage it!

     
  • At Freitag, November 04, 2005 11:38:00 vorm., Anonymous Suntech said…

    I wonder why she does the things she does. Has she ever regretted anything?

     
  • At Freitag, November 04, 2005 1:55:00 nachm., Anonymous Neutral Fella. said…

    I wonder if she will ever exhibit self-awareness and if she will ever come to any regret over her foolishness. In essence, will she grow up?

    I don't hate her but it is just tragic seeing a human being like her descend to such a level.

     
  • At Freitag, November 04, 2005 2:25:00 nachm., Blogger simplesandra said…

    neutral fella wrote: "I wonder if she will ever exhibit self-awareness and if she will ever come to any regret over her foolishness. In essence, will she grow up?

    I don't hate her but it is just tragic seeing a human being like her descend to such a level."


    On a serious note, she does seem to be suffering from some kind of complex, I don't know, which might explain for her behaviour.

    Teenagers are like that because they feel insecure as they become more aware of themselves and the world around them; people with certain deficiencies may turn to aggression to compensate for their sense of inferiority, for instance.

    It's not a matter whether she'll grow up, but whether she wants to grow up, I guess.

     
  • At Samstag, November 05, 2005 3:50:00 vorm., Blogger simplesandra said…

    Just received an e-mail from the Society for the Physically Disabled, and they noted that the Straits Times have quoted them out of context. They've also written to the ST to clarify their stand:

    "SPD was not responding to the blog content or to the blogger of website xiaxue.blog-spot.com. Hence, the quote attributed to SPD in the article was used out of context."

    More details later.

     
  • At Samstag, November 05, 2005 5:59:00 vorm., Anonymous kingoftears said…

    ah, that's awesome news.
    look forward to seeing more.

     
  • At Samstag, November 05, 2005 1:37:00 nachm., Anonymous Neutral Fella. said…

    SimpleSandra, it is your opinion that she has self-awareness of the ugliness of her personality but that she has made the choice about not wanting to grow up? Do you think that she may be actually be oblivious and have the sentience of a brick?(okay, sentience of a toilet bowl since we are on about toilets)

     
  • At Samstag, November 05, 2005 6:02:00 nachm., Blogger simplesandra said…

    neutral fella wrote: " Do you think that she may be actually be oblivious and have the sentience of a brick?(okay, sentience of a toilet bowl since we are on about toilets)"

    Nope, personally I don't think she's oblivious to her own flaws. Her low self-esteem just doesn't let her come to terms with them, so she chooses to belittle everything and everyone else, if only to make herself feel less insecure.

    I'm not a psychologist, but that's my two-cents. =)

     
  • At Sonntag, November 06, 2005 11:57:00 nachm., Anonymous Anonym said…

    Could you give us a hi-res scan of that picture, please? Thank you.

     

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