Posts Tagged ‘face of singapore’s blogosphere’

Xiaxue’s iPhone Fiasco: Entertaining But Negative For Singapore’s Social Media Scene

April 12, 2008

I read about Xiaxue’s iPhone blunder via Sheylara two days ago, and here’s the video in question:

The (new) Mediaslut posts:

If I was Apple, I would fight back, take Xiaxue out for lunch, give her the spill on the iPhone and work on convincing her why the iPhone is better than the Chinese fake!

Spot on. For Apple.

But the (new) Mediaslut also says:

Xiaxue’s post about the Apple iPhone is a social media practitioner’s dream come true.

Think of it. A local Singapore blogger get globalised all because of a video review.

Really? Sure, it’s entertaining for two minutes, but for all of us web 2.0 evangelists and social media junkies, especially those on the agency side, let’s step back and look at the bigger picture.

We’re firm believers in what social media can do for us, personally or for a business. But in all likelihood we have to pitch this to a supervisor or client, for their approval. Now, what do you think an MNC client will do if we suggest blogs? One thing they might do is Google “popular Singapore blogs” or some variation of it, to see who’s active in this scene. Who’ll they find? Mr. Brown at #1 and Xiaxue at #2.

Is that going to inspire confidence in them and convince them that Singapore’s social media scene is worth investing in? For better or worse, Xiaxue is arguably the public face of Singapore’s blogosphere, and those looking at social media for the first time may not look beyond that to find the others in the long tail actually contributing and adding value to the social media scene. Is it any wonder businesses in Singapore don’t seem to take blogs seriously?

Reading about social media in Asia, we don’t have many of the problems facing our neighbours that obstruct social media. We don’t have the low internet penetration of Indonesia, nor the geographical issues of India. And yet out social media scene in the business setting is sadly lacking. Is this a possible reason why?

I think it’s okay for us social media evangelists in the fishbowl to see an issue like this and laugh it off as an inside joke. But we have to remember that as the main advocates of this media, there is more at stake. We need to recognise that yes, it does put us on the map, but the implications of that are not always positive.

What we cannot do is be insular and blind to the concerns and issues this raises to the large majority of people who are not in our same fishbowl – those looking in deciding whether this fishbowl is a nice place to swim in.

And we need to know how to tackle these issues, reassure concerns and look your client who just saw that video in the eye and say without hesitation: the water’s fine. come swim.

Because if we don’t, who will?

Edit: In case you don’t read the comments, the (new) Media Slut wrote an excellent post in reply to this post which you should check out. I think it’s a really good conversation that’s taking place (and we’re not taking directly opposing views if you ask me), and it would be great if you would comment either here or at Media Slut to enhance our conversation.

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