Tag Archive | "straits times fail"

Straits Times suitcase ad placement FAIL

Straits Times suitcase ad placement FAIL

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The Fail Times is FAIL.

No need for words. Just shake your head.






Straits Times fails to win any award for local news coverage

Straits Times fails to win any award for local news coverage

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Tabloid The New Paper beats ST for breaking the news about Michael Palmer’s affair.


The Straits Times, Singapore’s premier number 1 gold standard in journalism received a major egg in the face during Wednesday night’s 12th Asian Media Awards.

They failed to win any accolades for local news reporting, which is supposed to be their forte and bread-and-butter.

Instead, tabloid-ass-wipe The New Paper actually beat ST to best in editorial content for breaking the news about Michael Palmer’s affair.

Media analyst, Kwa Poh Zhuar, said: “This is akin to Geylang United beating Manchester United at football. And sleeping with all their wives.”

More proof that ST, Channel 5 is biased

More proof that ST, Channel 5 is biased

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How biased? Very.

The recently concluded Punggol East by-election held on Jan. 26 was a godsend not just to the Workers’ Party.

Semi-professional media watchers, who are very free, have used this rare opportunity to conduct the following exercise: Check how skewed the mainstream media coverage was, as it is not everyday you have a by-election essentially focussed on one SMC with two candidates from heavyweight parties.

This makes life easy for those carrying out a postmortem.

So, please take a look at the following scanned newspaper reports from The Straits Times. It is seven days’ worth of coverage, taken from Jan. 19 to 25 — that one week leading up to polling day on Jan. 26.

Blacked out areas are advertisements. They are distracting.

Blacked out areas are advertisements. They are distracting.

On closer inspection, what emerges are some interesting and consistent patterns as to how the PAP was favoured over the WP.

Basically, both sets of candidates were systematically given different treatment in the mainstream media.

But the question is: Were you even aware of the following nifty little tricks the mainstream press uses to skew your perception?

PAP got more positive coverage

What we are about to do is quite simple: Since a picture paints a thousand words, then why not let’s just compare pictures?

Take a look at all the photos below that were published in that week’s worth of ST coverage, which are now cropped out to be compared side by side.



On the left, is the PAP. On the right, is the WP.

You will notice, in terms of quantity, they are about the same.

But — and here’s the big “but” — PAP’s Koh Poh Koon appeared in 11 photos, while WP’s Lee Li Lian appeared in only 8 of them.

No big deal, you say?

Well, if you were to look at WP’s set of photos alone, you can be forgiven for thinking that it might have been Low Thia Khiang who was running for Punggol East SMC instead.

Basically, WP’s Lee Li Lian’s clout is diluted in print. The same cannot be said for PAP’s Koh Poh Koon. ST clearly made Koh Poh Koon the subject of almost every photo.

Because if you look at PAP’s set of photos, you would have zero doubt who the candidate was.

Left-right dichotomy

Ok, let’s go beyond the superficial.

For the more hawk-eyed and learned, this is where things start to get more interesting.

You will notice that PAP and their candidate are more likely to be featured on the left-hand side of any image, while WP and their candidate are more likely to be relegated to be on the right-hand side.

Why is appearing on the left better? That’s because people read from left to right. Anything on the left, comes first.

Here, let me help you see things clearer:


Look at the last two pictures: Even when the picture of PM Lee is on the right, in the picture he is still on the left. And check out Lee Li Lian’s position in the last picture. Although the picture is published on the left of the paper, Lee Li Lian is still standing on the far right. She is not even the subject of the photo.

Channel 5 most biased

Still not convinced? Is it all a fluke?

Ok fine. Let me give you one last piece of incontrovertible proof that the mainstream media is biased.

On the 27 Jan. Channel 5 news report, one day after the results of the by-election were out, this was how they presented the candidates, their winning/ losing margin and who actually got elected to be Punggol East MP.

Why is the loser's picture so much bigger than the elected MP's? Parallax error?

Why is the loser’s picture so much bigger than the elected MP’s? Parallax error?

I’m sorry, but even though I might have been sitting to one side of the TV, I really don’t think this discrepancy in the size of the candidates’ faces is due to parallax error.

Why the hell is the guy who lost the by-election getting a much bigger surface area for his face to be on TV?!






Amazing photo of WP victory that ST didn’t dare publish in print

Amazing photo of WP victory that ST didn’t dare publish in print


Notice how ST only publishes close-up, narrow angle shots.

It’s been one week since the Workers’ Party’s outstanding victory at the Punggol East by-election on Jan. 26 where they tore PAP a new one.

So, what better way to commemorate this historic event than by celebrating the tireless work of our nation-building press, The Straits Times.

After WP’s victory, check out the types of photos ST published in The Sunday Times on Jan. 27 the following day:

Close range photo of Low Thia Khiang:

Close-up shot

Close-up shot

Close range photo of supporters:

Even more close-up shots of WP

Even more close-up shots of WP

Even more close range photo of supporters:

And what is this? Some more close-up shots of WP's historic win!

And what is this? Some more close-up shots of WP’s historic win!

What is this? How do these photos even accurately capture the mood of that night’s awesome ass-kicking of the PAP?

Now, here’s where things get interesting.

One week after the by-election — for some strange reason — ST has published a multimedia clip online titled “Battle Punggol East” that features all of the unused footage and photos.

Fast forward the clip to 04:18.

What you will see is this awe-inspiring scene of WP’s victory party that night where supporters were so many they were dry humping the taxi:

Question is: Why didn’t ST use this photo in print to convey the mood instead? Is it that difficult to be honest? Why choose to hide it on some obscure online portal now?

Is it that hard to send a photographer to a high place to take a shot? If you can send a guy with a video camera to take this video, why not a photographer?

It might sound like we are bitching and whining about something trivial. But no, it is not a minor point.

On the same day’s coverage of events in The Sunday Times, ST actually bothered to send a photographer to take a top-down photo of entertainer Ah Nan’s funeral send-off.


Fair reporting much?

Straits Times emulates Temasek Review, breaks the law

Straits Times emulates Temasek Review, breaks the law

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One ST reporter in particular, wants to get arrested to earn street cred.

… want to emulate Temasek Review? Because their reporters also want to go prison.

A report in The Straits Times, “ST poll: more rooting for PAP” (Jan. 10, 2013), has come under intense scrutiny from the public-at-large.

Why? This is because the report wrote: “A STRAITS Times poll of 50 Punggol East residents, after the Writ of Election was issued yesterday, suggests that the opposition may face an uphill battle in trying to secure control of the ward.”

This is the poll that could bring ST trouble.

This could lead to the potential arrests of a few ST reporters for breaking the sacred laws of Singapore, as polls of any kind are not allowed during election time. The Punggol East SMC by-election is slated for Jan. 26.

The public-at-large are pointing fingers at a previous case in late 2011 where a man was arrested for conducting a poll during GE2011.

Two years ago, it was reported on Oct. 2011 that one Joseph Ong Chor Teck, a doctor and supposed Temasek Review-linked personnel, became the first Singaporean man to be arrested on Sept. 3, 2011 by the police for conducting an exit poll on Facebook during the general election on May 7.

Joseph Ong Chor Teck was arrested on Sept. 3 for conducting an exit poll on Facebook.

Temasek Review was a popular but now-defunct website commenting on Singaporean social and political affairs.

Ong had asked Facebook participants to share how they voted during GE2011 on the Temasek Review Facebook page.

His case is still pending today.

However, one ST reporter, who refused to be named because he doesn’t want his editor Warren Fernandez to know he is talking to New Nation, said: “I take a lot of shit from the public because of what I do. If I can serve time in prison, I can prove I’m just as tough as Chee Soon Juan. I can also be a martyr.”

Straits Times editors to get shot at headline writing workshop

Straits Times editors to get shot at headline writing workshop

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If only Facebook had a Dislike button.



Reader demands apology for distasteful Straits Times writing

Reader demands apology for distasteful Straits Times writing

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ST sub-headline sends one into a blinding rage, he claims.

On the front page of The Straits Times Home section today (April 2, 2012), there is this story that is published:

But what I’ll like to do, is to pull your attention to the sub-headline:

Honestly, I didn’t even read the article. I just glanced at this sub-headline and immediately flew into a blinding rage.

This sort of attention-grabbing antics dealing in double entendre should not be tolerated, even in a country like Singapore, with our advanced literacy skills.

Saying that “Aids come in handy” is disrespectful on so many levels to so many countries in the world today that are ravaged by Aids.

It is similar to saying that Khmer Rouge did Cambodia a favour by making everyone equally handicapped.

Or that Joseph Kony is just doing an Angelina Jolie by adopting a lot of children.

This is sickening. And there needs to be an apology for such editorial oversights.

I do realise that the ST article in question is not even on the subject about Aids the disease.

Yes, the meaning is taken out of context.

However, it doesn’t matter to me or you. And here’s why.

This is because there is always that likelihood, however minuscule, that this sub-headline can be construed to mean just that: Aids is a disease people should contract because of the conveniences it affords.

Yes, I know this doesn’t even make sense at all.

But that’s the real problem.

Does quantum physics ever make sense to you? No, right?

But do people still buy it?

Of course!

Herein lies the beating heart of the issue: I would like to re-iterate that headlines of this sort, especially those on the front page, can be hugely misleading, especially when misread.

Do you know how many protests in the world were started as a result of misinterpretations and misreadings?

If international best-selling author Salman Rushie bothered to rename his 1988 storybook “The Satanic Verses” to “Cherry Pie Pecan Girlfriend”, none of his troubles would have occurred.

No mullah from a theocratic state would have threatened to kill him. No money would be put on his head.

The countless number of effigies of the balding author would not have been senselessly burnt around the world to release untold amounts of carbon dioxide and anthropomorphic greenhouse gases that today, threaten to kill Johnny Polar Bear.

And he would still be dating supermodels in peace.

Look, all I’m saying is: Today is already April 2. It is not even April Fools’ Day any more. Why should The Straits Times pull such kinds of childish stunts?

We all know that newspaper sales are going down faster than Man United’s Nani or Joo Chiat’s streetwalkers can get on their knees, so there is a need to pique the readers’ interest into buying a copy.

But as long as I’m required to do a double-take, this means there is something wrong with the writing.

And I’m not even a mullah.

I know, I can choose to be whatever I want.

I can choose to be Christian, Muslim, Buddhist, agnostic or atheist, and hence, forgiving or ignorant.

But I precisely chose to be offended in this case.

And you know why?

Because I can.

And when I can, that only means countless other people with too much free time on their hands can too.

Which also explains why there are more electrifying moral outrages than electricity outages in our First World Country.

Yours sincerely,
An Outraged Straits Times Reader

The Straits Times shoots itself in the foot

The Straits Times shoots itself in the foot

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Anonymity is a sign of hidden agenda, ST letter writer claims. How true, how true…

By Don’t Tell You, So What?

Two days ago, on Jan. 30, The Straits Times published this letter by a certain Jeffrey Law in its broadsheet as well as its online version:

The gist of the letter? The letter writer claims that objective newspapers are here to stay because anything written by anonymous or pseudonymous contributors cannot be trusted.


Now check out The Straits Times report published today (Feb. 1) about the Singapore People’s Party:


Hey! There is no reporter’s name, no byline, nothing whatsover! It is anonymous!

Therefore, using Jeffery Law’s superior logic endorsed by The Straits Times, ST’s coverage of SPP cannot be trusted.


How you feel right now:

Chinese tabloid Lianhe Wanbao the unlikeliest hero?

Chinese tabloid Lianhe Wanbao the unlikeliest hero?

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How did Lianhe Wanbao get their hands on what could be the story of the year?

Although news media in Singapore tend to be dull and not very stimulating most of the time, they do throw up some oddities once in a while.

Take the recent high-profile arrests of the ex-chiefs of the Central Narcotics Bureau (CNB) and Singapore Civil Defence Force (SCDF) under the Prevention of Corruption Act:

Anyone familiar with Lianhe Wanbao, the technicolour Chinese evening tabloid filled with exploding fonts, scandalicious headlines and pixelated eyes, will know that a typical front page looks something like this:

Or like this:

So it comes as quite a big surprise that Lianhe Wanbao is the first newspaper to break the news on Tuesday regarding an uber-newsworthy scandal involving senior civil servants that should have been right up The Straits Times’ alley.

In other words, shame on The Straits Times for getting owned by a Chinese tabloid!

So, here’s just four questions that can be asked about this incident:

1. How did Lianhe Wanbao even get wind of this story in the first place?

2. Considering that one arrest was made in mid-December and the other in early January, why was the Ministry of Home Affairs sitting on this news for three weeks? Because they are awaiting General Election 2016?

3. As far as industry people are concerned, there has always been some kind of semi-friendly competition going on between all the major newspapers in Singapore. So, if this story was let out of the bag for bragging rights by Lianhe Wanbao, can The Straits Times still claim to be the Gold Standard in journalism?

4. Should this piece of news serve to show that there really isn’t a well-coordinated effort within Singapore’s news rooms to keep anything too scandalous involving civil servants under wraps?