SGcarmart – social responsibility and the lack of it


Text/Script
from my video above, below.

Hi guys… I guess some of you might have expected this video, I’ll do my best to keep it short and sweet.

Let me start off by stating clearly, that I am not trying to instigate nor discriminate. I am merely reacting with personal perspectives.

However, before I start, here is a little recap incase you missed the previous few episodes…

Back in November 2015, our “friends” over SGcarmart decided that it was entirely alright to not just imitate, but to lie, deceive, connive and pretend to be us. 9tro.

Not sure what I am referring to? I am talking about the time when they created a pseudo/fake URL links and Google Advertised it, so that when you guys search for 9tro on Google, their URL link pops up.

Welcome to the 21st century, the word of #FakeNews, seemingly a strategy used not just by organizations lacking credibility, such as The Online Citizen / Wake Up Singapore, who by the way, are known for creating unsubstantiated stories; but also by some of the subsidiaries owned and governed by the Singapore Press Holdings.

Seriously?! Creating fake websites using a name and brand which my team and I built from scratch, just to get a few more clicks to your website? Utterly despicable ‘without cute yellow minions’.

Ok, so this is old news and while we did receive an apology from SGcarmart via email, they have never apologized publicly for misleading you guys for that extended period of time. Yes, I am still having to explain to people that we, 9tro, are in no way related to SGcarmart nor the Singapore Press Holdings, due to the #FakeNews created by them back then.

9tro - SGcarmart

Many of you may not know about this episode, feel free to find out here.


Ok, moving on…

So about two months back, I posted up a vlog pondering out loud and challenging our “friends” over at Torque Magazine Singapore, supposedly the leading automotive magazine in Singapore, about their editorial decisions, social responsibilities and professionalism.

I find content such as ‘Only ang mohs (Causasians) drive convertibles with the top down‘ and ‘10 worst cars for a first date‘, to be offensive because they are clearly elitist, sexist, racist, unprofessional, degrading and filled with prejudice.

Hong Tsui - Social Responsibility

If you guys did not know about these, again, feel free to find out more here.


So here I am, again, ranting and venting, because a week ago, our “friends” at SGcarmart decided to yet again, publish something which is elitist, sexist, and in my professional opinion, highly unprofessional.

This recent piece, titled ‘Nine girly cars that no self-respecting man should ever drive‘ once again demonstrates a core problem with our society today. Even if the article includes a disclaimer that the story is “for entertainment purposes”, it does not deviate away from the importance and responsibility that all media companies should uphold. Clearly this story, like the ones before it, with its click-bait stylization, is aimed at generating website clicks.

Earlier this week, the Singapore Press Holdings announced a dramatic ‘Q2 net profit drop by 25%, due to weaker advertising and circulation revenue‘. Earlier today, Mediacorp announced that their magazines such as 8 Days and i-Weekly will cease their monthly printed editions, and shift entirely online.

It is clear that the online realm is indeed where the battle will be played out in the years to come, thus when I made the painful decision to shift 9tro from a monthly printed magazine in Singapore and Malaysia to be entirely digital and online, it was the right move in the right direction. Having said that, it is still our responsibility to ensure properly curated content it published. Not unprofessional stuff like these, declaring certain models to be girly cars and that no self-respecting man should be caught dead driving them… Such bullshit…

Here is my take on some of the cars listed…

According to SGcarmart: the BMW i3 is a girly car men should not drive because it lacks manly exhaust notes; and the article recommends the BMW 330e as a manly alternative. Well, for those of you who don’t already know, the BMW 330e doesn’t exactly produce much exhaust sounds either. That said, both cars are of different categories, so comparing the two is kind of unfair, much like saying “an apple is girly because it is red, and does not taste like an orange!”

Next on the list, the Daihatsu Copen. Described to be girly because it has rounded edges… What the hell?? I have very manly guy friends who drive both the new and the previous generation Copen, I definitely do not think of them as girly, quite the contrary in fact. Seriously, how is this journalism? Even if it were for entertainment purposes, why then are there more people pissed off than people laughing?

Another on the list, the article’s comment about the Mazda Miata MX-5. First of all, a million examples have been produced and sold, and while I can’t verify the numbers, I am pretty darn sure that most of the car buyers, be them brand new or pre-owned, are men. Secondly, without doubt, anyone who has sat or driven in one, especially if it was on a circuit, would immediately realize what an awesome little sports car it is. So a little note to all you men who have owned or currently owns a Mazda Miata MX-5, according to the guys over at SGcarmart, you are not a self-respecting man.

Next on the list, the new Mercedes-Benz SLC. According to SGcarmart, only “girls who marry rich Indonesian businessmen and then divorce them later to live off alimony, drive them”. WOW! Seriously?! How is this even considered entertainment? Not only is it rude, it is downright disgraceful.

Look, I’ve said this before and I’ll say it a thousand times more, if you have nothing good, substantial, worthy to say, just shut the hell up. There is no need to create stories that are bias, elitist, sexist and unprofessional.

Maybe the PR and marketing guys from BMW, Daihatsu, Citroen, Fiat, Mazda, Mercedes, Mini, Volkswagen and Subaru needs to reconsider their advertising relationship with SGcarmart, Torque Magazine and even Singapore Press Holdings as a whole.

Sigh…

Let’s be honest guys, it’s not as if we do not have enough bullshit to deal with. From ‘so called’ automotive media colleagues creating fake accounts to stalk others, to the barrage of #Fakenews we see on a daily basis; what the world needs now, is love, sweet love…

To create such click-bait content is easy, 9tro could easily do the same, but is it the proper way to do things? I will have to disagree.

I dare not say I am speaking up for people, because I am in no position to do so, but I am most certainly speaking up for myself, because junk like these, needs to stop.

If you agree, please feel free to like/share/repost.

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