terse & at large

GRRRRR. Arrrgh. And sometimes a travel log.

Wednesday, August 18, 2004

What Do We Complain About? And How.

In today's ST Interactive Forum, someone complains about the 'hurtful' words used in trailers for upcoming episodes. Aren't you jumping the gun? What have you seen of the attitude of the Idol-wannabe in question to even guess at why the judges would react in this manner?

"Judges were shouting, 'Get out!' and telling contestants, 'You are nothing!' and 'I am beginning to hate you...' "

Er, you know, quoting like this is going to get you into trouble. The trailer just played on my TV, and boy did you leave out a lot of context: "You think you can do a lot, but now you know: you are nothing!"; and "You have to come across to people as a likeable person, but I am beginning to hate you...".

How the hell did you manage to so badly misquote someone and then have the gall to go on a tirade? And since when did trailers for episodes ever tell the whole story?

"How about 'I want you to leave right now!' said with eye contact? One can be firm without being rude."

Excuse me? Which part of La-La Land is that phrase used? I didn't recognise that accent. One should never underestimate the effectiveness of a simple "Get out!".

I used to do it with a simple throwing of a chair as well. Works well both ways.

I left the second article on Singapore Idol in there because the (Dr) ought to do better research and realise that Singapore Idol, or for the matter American Idol, is just a derivative of Pop Idol, a British invention. Get your facts straight, doc!

There are some mornings I wake up and wish that education wasn't available to everyone because not everyone can handle the additional responsibility that education brings.

AUG 18, 2004
Watch that hurtful Idol talk

IT IS disconcerting to watch Singapore Idol although I am a big fan of American Idol. I was taken aback by some of the judges' remarks, especially those in snippets showcasing upcoming episodes.

Judges were shouting, 'Get out!' and telling contestants, 'You are nothing!' and 'I am beginning to hate you...'.

The fact that the judges are celebrities means that the young see them as role models, whether they like it or not - especially on national television.

The remarks reflected poorly on the judges. Perhaps they were trying too hard to be Simon Cowell. If they were being themselves, the remarks reflect their crude and poor communication skills and deplorable manners.

Criticism and feedback can be given in a constructive and honest way. However, some remarks were uncalled for and destructive. Cowell's criticisms were usually very witty sarcasms. Criticisms from our judges were just plain rude and nothing more.

Remarks such as 'hating' the contestant are beyond comprehension. What could the contestant have done to evoke such 'hatred'? Are we sending a message that it is acceptable to 'hate' so easily?

This is a dangerous attitude to encourage in these uncertain times.

Telling a contestant 'you are nothing!' demolishes the person's self-worth. Being bad in singing does not justify such a destructive remark.

Saying something like 'give up your hope of ever singing' or 'that was horrible' would be a constructive comment. Somebody could be hopeless in singing and yet find his vocation elsewhere.

'You are nothing!' is an immature and arrogant way of putting down another human being. Constructive feedback pertains to actions - in this case, singing - and does not attack the person.

Shouting at a contestant to 'get out' is nothing but plain rudeness. Being a celebrity does not entitle one to be rude on national television. How about 'I want you to leave right now!', said with eye contact? One can be firm without being rude.

There are ways to get a message across while still maintaining the speaker's, as well as the listener's, dignity.

One may argue that our young are 'softies' and need some 'real-life' harshness to toughen them up. While this may be true, would airing such crude remarks by celebrities also teach them that this is the way to communicate feedback?

I am not advocating being soft on the young. Feedback is necessary for them to learn and grow. But feedback can certainly be given in a constructive manner.

If the judges were just trying very hard to provide 'entertainment', there is no need for that. There is enough entertainment with the bad singing by some of the brave contestants.

The judges could learn something about giving feedback from Mr Donald Trump in The Apprentice. That is what I would call honest, direct and constructive feedback, done with finesse.


ISN'T the whole thing contradictory? The judges are presumably out to spot creativity, and yet what we get from their own performance is a stylised act, an unconvincing imitation of Simon Cowell.

The programme is American and Americans are frank. But Americans would distinguish frankness from boorishness.

In Singapore, the judges' action undermines all that our media has tried to do in courtesy campaigns.



  • At 9:16 PM, August 18, 2004, Blogger tbh said…

    I honestly got a good laugh when I saw his deadpan expression on TV Mobile and "hurtful" words. A spinoff comedy series looks ripe.

    Remember the time they juiced that Under One Roof fat man's (who - coincidentally, is an alumnus of a school you used to throw chairs around in) popularity until nobody gave a toss about him anymore? That was an all-time low, even by their standards.

    The last I saw him was in a Chinese local variety show which my Chinese teacher specially recorded, dressed in some cute Chinese costume, at the school listening to random people share jokes.

    Just as well they decided to waste your taxpayer money on licensing a ripoff singing competition.

  • At 9:44 PM, August 19, 2004, Blogger Cryolite? said…

    well , it certainly looks like the nice doctor has to eat his own words.

  • At 10:08 PM, August 19, 2004, Blogger Terz said…

    Well. What can I say that's not been seen in the programme today (or from what I saw of the programme before I left for dinner)?


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