The week in review: Mumbrella Awards winners revealed | Club 21’s data leak | Singapore government’s ‘PR disaster’ | The best awards pastiche ever | Stop saying ‘advocacy’ | Myanmar telco hit by Buddhist boycott threat

Mumbrella Asia logoIn a week in which a Singapore luxury retailer’s customers were exposed by hackers, Malaysia Airlines sought PR counsel to polish a flagging balance sheet, China blocked memories of Tiananmen in the media, a Singaporean media agency officially opened in Australia,  and the Mumbrella Awards winners were revealed.

Story of the week

Club 21‘s data leak. Just a few days before 1,560 accounts of online government transaction platform SingPass were hackedSingapore high-end fashion retailer Club 21 revealed that its computer servers had been breached, exposing members of its customer loyalty programme. The company drew criticisms for waiting two weeks before alerting its customers to the problem. Who is responsible remains a mystery.

Quotes of the week

DDB APAC boss John Zeigler pointed out what he perceives to be a difference in work ethic in certain parts of the region in a discussion about work life balance at Mumbrella360:

Asians are working double the rate of Australians

Mail Online editor in chief Martin Clarke on his publication’s editorial approach to social media:

We don’t do a story because we think it will shared, we do it because we think will it get read on our homepage. If you have a business model that relies on sharing you are quite vulnerable because you depend on third parties – Facebook could disappear tomorrow.

James Sykes, APAC marketing director of Beam Suntory, said what pisses him off at Mumbrella360:

We’re continually marginalising ourselves, because we talk shit most of the time. Most of what we say is meaningless, because fad words get in the way.

Darren Woolley, MD of TrinityP3 and captain of Mumbrella’s jury for the APAC categories, outlined why the winners won:

It was clear across the three APAC categories judged that while all the shortlisted agencies had clearly had a good year, the winners where the agencies who articulated a clear strategy and direction.

Buzzfeed’s international VP Keith Hernandez had a pop at traditional publishers after being asked about the New York Times’ leaked memo story at Mumbrella360.

Old publishers are stuck. They’re losing revenue from one end, like a boat with holes.

Amir from DDBDDB’s global creative chief Amir Kassaei on the problem with awards:

A big problem with awards is that people are not judging ideas, they’re judging the quality of case study videos – the packaging of an idea. It would be great if we get to the point where we judge ideas purely as ideas, not as disciplines [such as print, film or direct]. But for awards organisers, this makes no economic sense.”

Amir Kassaei on awards scam or “prototyping”:

If a car company is amazing only at producing prototypes, they will not be taken seriously. I’m not an enemy of prototyping, but you have to get the balance right.

Havas Media Australia boss Mike Wilson said at Mumbrella360 that industry leaders tend to “hide behind clichés” on the work life balance issue:

You’ll hear people say ‘we work hard, we play hard’, or ‘we enter the Employer of the Year awards’, as if that’s somehow going to make everyone feel great that they’ve been operating on two hours sleep for the last week.”

The Singapore government’s Speak Good English Movement programme explained to Mumbrella why they used humour in their latest educational

Comedy is enjoyable to many as humour has high entertainment value.

Deborah Thomas of magazine publisher Bauer Media on marketing to women in her session at Mumbrella360.

Ads that make men look stupid to make women look strong are patronising not empowering.

Neal Moore, boss of content agency Click2View, responds to a tweet that called on marketers to stop using fad words and jargon.

I’ll stop saying “advocacy” and “engagement” as soon as clients stop asking for it along with “viral” and “wow factor”.

Lachlan MurdochNews Corporation co-chairman Lachlan Murdoch reflected on his company’s decision to sell Star TV in China at Mumbrella360.

China is a tough market, particularly if you are a content producer.

Calvin Soh aired his views on the prime minister of Singapore’s pursuit of blogger Roy Ngerng in the courts.

Whoever is advising the pap needs to get their heads out of their own crevice. It is a PR disaster of their own making. What if Roy raises $500,000? It’s not just the sum; crowdfunding shows you market size. What if people don’t support Roy, but want this to go to court so the issue of CPF will be brought up? What if you [Singapore’s government] have turned Roy into a symbol of the ordinary guy being bullied because you’ve pushed too hard?

Kerry McCabe, APAC MD of ad tech firm Radium One, on what is holding back the programmatic trading sector.

Some trading desks are pursuing short-term gain, which is degrading trust in the sector among clients.

Best work

Creative Fuel. Possibly the best pisstake ever of ad agencies’ obsession with awards ever. Truly a game-changer, the World’s First Crowd Sourced 3D Printed QR Code, Live Streamed Via Go Pro To A Smart Phone Or Tablet Device, Drone Delivery Ticket System Project.

Lifebuoy. A moving short film about the importance of keeping clean.

WWF. Panda flash mob to highlight the fact that there are only 1,600 pandas left in the world.

Giant panda flash mob

Speak Good English Movement. The Singapore government enlisted the talents of local comedian Kumar to try and encourage Singaporeans to speak better English.

The Guardian. “We’d never get a job at FIFA”.

The Guardian ad

Laphroaig Single Malt. School lavatories? Damp dog? A sea gull’s armpits? What does this whisky smell like?

Worst ad

Lingerie ads occupy about every square inch of Hong Kong’s MTR at the moment, so it’s hard to stand out, even with pictures of busy ladies. The tagline for this one for Floral “a spell of sexy” gets noticed for dubious copywriting.

Floral, a spell of sexy

Best-read story on Mumbrella

Suing blogger Roy Ngerng is ‘a PR disaster of their own making’ for Singapore government

Good week for…

DDB, Weber Shandwick and MediaCom. They won APAC creative, PR and media network of the year at the Mumbrella Awards.

Singaporean media agencies. The Media Shop became the first media agency to launch in Australia.

Bad week for…

Ooredoo. The Qatar-owned telco was hit with a call from Buddhist monks to boycott the network.

Club21. A data leak made worst by the length of time it took the company to let its customers know about it.

Google and the Wall Street Journal. Both were blocked by the Chinese authorities ahead of the 25th anniversary of the Tiananmen protests.

Prediction for next week

The customer database of a big brand in Singapore gets hacked, prompting the government to call in white hat hackers to pursue the perpetrators.


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