Sunday, October 10, 2010

Stuff That Sells Papers

Sex helps sell publications (amongst other things). That was why maiden issues of The New Paper (a.k.a. The Nude Paper) featured scandalous stories and scantily clad females. It was supposed to target the blue collared workers who can't understand the high falutin words used by some politicians quoted in the morning rag.

Biased journalism has similar effect on sales. Fans of the embattled Dr Ong Teck Chin must be ringing up the paper for reprints of the movie star quality shots used for Sunday's front page and accompanying feature article. In real person, he definitely looks more effeminate than Mel Gibson in Braveheart. The sympathy being garnered for Ong reminds one of the Straits Times front page letter Ho Ching wrote in support of TT Durai before latter was pulverised by Davinder Singh. Ms Ho was reminding the public of Durai's contributions, basically amounting to raising lots of money with contrived tear jerking stories. The part about enhancing his own lifestyle came out only later in court. They talked about "the legacy" of Dr Ong in the papers, and how he raised the ranking of the school under his charge with "concentration camp" techniques. No further details were given about his well known favoritism for certain categories of teaching staff. If they are serious about newspaper sales, they need to dig up more juicy material.

But sex and biased journalism were not used for Saturday's front page story of TNP. Someone said confidential information was procured for a smear campaign. Never mind the story was full of holes, the facts mangled beyond recognition, and the picture of Lee Bee Wah was never printed on a toilet cover. Actually there are lots of upmarket toilet covers with more attractive illustrations than an old bat. So is the journalist from TNP, Ms Ng Wan Ching, breaking new ground by using fiction to boost circulation? Or is someone trying to lure the writers of the targetted website out of anonymity by dangling a juicy defamation suit? TT Durai took that bait, and look what happened to him.


  1. They even had the guts to publish the photo of the doctor as if he was some evil monster already guilty before proven beyond reasonable doubt.

    And the reporter went on to say that fair-minded persons had a very low opinion of TR's articles. I really truly amazed how the reporter can read the minds of fair-minded people, as it would be so unprofessional for any journalist worth its salt to be able to make this kind of statement.

    I believe I am a reasonably fair-minded person but I also believe that TR has done a reasobably good job to present another side of the story. Whether they are to be believed or not is entirely up to each individual's judgement. And I honestly believe that each individual's judgement need to be respected.

    TNP has obviously not shown any respect for any individual's judgement.

  2. I guess, going by the TNP journalist's logic, fair-minded individuals also have a very low opinion of SPH's papers, since the latter just regurgitate the govt's line. It's sad for our country that our local journalists are not journalists, but mere "publishers" of the govt's press releases.

  3. Sex is second to food, it is even more important than a house(home). The sex(vice) industry rakes in substantial incomes for countries like Thailand and the Phillippines and some times ago, Taiwan(in the 50s to the 70s). Individually, the sex crave is so crazy that all civilizations have to sanction prostitions to prevent sexual offences. The Laws and Morals of almost every society say sex trades are offences against their cultures, but emperors, kings, parliamentarians are as sex hungry as the next person irrespective of gender. There are prostitutes(female) and there are ducks and cowboys(male) everywhere. In Sin, sex sells more than hotcakes.
    Then, there are those who prostitute themselves without sex(organ) but prostitute their souls. This last category is the lowest of beings.

  4. Being sex crazed in Singapore is more common than you think. There are loads of sex crazed men on Spore chatlines, friendster, sex chat-kind of websites hog during office hours and after, just waiting to prey on or pick up a female (unsuspecting or not) to bed or fling with.

    Any reporter wanting a scoop can give a try these sites. Many of these do so from their offices (some govt institutes eg polys etc , some not) seemingly free during the busy working hours.

    Sex topics are always uppermost on their minds.