So this is Christmas. And what have you done?
Well, two days before Christmas, I published a 5,000-word blog post, accusing an online marketing company of inflating its earnings and other misdeeds, and ignited a “blog war”.
Then I Instagrammed a shot of me wearing a headband with the words "Fuck off" (from Obscene Headbands “R” Us) and showing my middle fingers to the world next to photos of my oh-so-cuuuuuute 21-month-old son named Dashiel.
You see, I’m not only a badass online crusader for truth but a loving mother as well.
Of course, when I say “I”, I don’t mean me.
I mean Wendy Cheng, better known as Xiaxue, which she says means “snowing”, but could also be read as “sia suay”, which in Hokkien means something she probably doesn’t intend.
Such is XX’s intimidating stature in the blogosphere that despite her under-1.5m frame, she’s the Goliath in her online brawl with Gushcloud, even though she is just one person against a whole company.
Before her blog post, I (as in me, not XX) had never even heard of Gushcloud.
I might have come across the name of the company before, but it quickly left my mind like a cloud blown away by a gust of wind.
But thanks to XX’s “big Gushcloud exposé”, I now know I have another option in Gushcloud in case I want to promote my slimming services and think Nuffnang is charging me too much for an advertorial. Also, XX, who is represented by Nuffnang, just wrote a very nasty review of my slimming services.
Okay, I realise many of you may have never heard of Nuffnang. It’s sort of like Gushcloud’s big competitor and has been around longer.
When I first came across the name Nuffnang, I imagined the company sold toy guns that shot sponge-tipped bullets.
I now run Nuffnang ads on my blog. I used to run Google ads until Google froze me out of my account because Google mistook me for a pornographer.
That might be because my URL is smong.net and if you look up “smong” in Urban Dictionary, the word apparently means “extra large penis”.
Hey, if it’s on the Internet, it must be true.
As it turns out, XX’s blog post is not just an exposé on Gushcloud. The chain of events has exposed the bitchy, shallow, stats-obsessed world of the beautiful young people who blog for a living and the people who represent them with its own parallel value system.
And you thought you were obsessed with the number of “likes” you got for the picture of your cat you posted on Facebook. For these folks, it’s their livelihood.
The leaked Gushcloud group whatsapp chat log only further confirms the bitchiness.
But I’ve never heard of these so-called “celebrity bloggers” or “influencers”. Who is this Yan Kay Kay, whom XX has kissed and broken up with? It ain’t exactly Zoe Tay versus Fann Wong.
There’s a saying: Being famous on Instagram is like being rich in Monopoly. It can also apply to bloggers.
As far as I’m concerned, there are only two bloggers in Singapore who matter (and who don’t blog about food): Lee Kin Mun, better known as Mr Brown, and dammit, Xiaxue.
Now there's a celebrity blogger deathmatch I would go to Sistic and buy tickets for my whole family to see.
But this year, another blogger has become more famous than both of them.
According to SimilarWeb.com, this relatively new blogger has an estimated 150,000 monthly visits while Mr Brown has 85,000 and XX 80,000 (for xiaxue.blogspot.sg). I have a measly 14,500.
Yet, this blogger is represented by neither Gushcloud nor Nuffnang. Maybe he needs to get a boob job.
In XX’s blog post exposing Gushcloud, she even followed this blogger’s modus operandi with her overuse of charts and graphs.
And while Gushcloud only sought “legal advice” against XX, this blogger has been taken to court and lost.
I am, of course, talking about Mr Roy Ngerng.
How come no one calls him a “celebrity blogger” or “influencer”?
Whether you agree or disagree with Mr Ngerng, his quixotic quest to get the Government to #returnourCPF is at least a cause all Singaporeans can relate to, making XX’s Gushcloud vendetta seems rather self-serving in comparison.
Leave it to Dashiel’s mum to make an alleged special-needs kids heckler look good.
Gushcloud has refuted XX’s accusations with its co-founder Althea Lim calling XX a liar and adding: “If you truly believe that you are not lying in your blog post on Gushcloud, I invite you to sue me FOR CALLING YOU A LIAR. And if you do not sue me, then I guess that speaks for itself.”
Looks like XX is not the only one spoiling for a fight.
Using Ms Lim’s logic, if Gushcloud doesn’t sue XX, does it mean XX’s allegations are true too?
The company’s CEO and other co-founder, Mr Vincent Ha, was more conciliatory, claiming that XX “is human too and she has her own opinions”. He wants to “live and let live”.
But is Xiaxue willing to give peace a chance?
Blog war is over if you want it.
- Published in The New Paper, 28 December 2014
This woman Xiaxue has no brains and no skills and adds no economic value. Just a bloody waste of time listening to her - I don't know why we in the mainstream media even bother to give publicity to her.
EARLIER: Ha! Vincent Ha of Gushcloud contacted me in September about this
It's now SMRT Ltd (Feedback) versus Xiaxue
My apologies to Vincent Ha and Goliath... I mean, Xiaxue
Xiaxue wins 'blog war'