Who"s davidlian?

My photo
davidlian is an ultra-geeky chinese dude that works for a technology PR agency. He loves fiddling with techno-toys, plays Warhammer 40K, and shoots pictures wherever he goes. Here, he rants about PR, Technology and anything else. Don't expect balance and un-biased, he ain't no journalist. Anything said on this blog are solely davidlian's personal views. Don't confuse them with company mantra, client's views or views of any organisation he may be part of.


Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Malaysia's very own PR awards - a coming of age

I remember being a very young PR consultant who didn't know head or tail about the industry once; so I asked my boss, how do I join the industry association?

Ku brought me to one of those PR Consultant's Association of Malaysia (PRCAM) AGMs and instructed me how to cast the companies' corporate vote. Back in those days, the PRCAM itself was pretty small and we rarely heard from other fellow PR Agencies except when Ku attended meetings or there was an activity here and there (Speakeasy comes to mind).

Fast-forward three years and the landscape has changed. Several key things happened within the industry body (best as I know):

  1. The accreditation process which now allows PRCAM members to opt for accreditation voluntarily. I remember following stories of the "official" PR Practitioners association (the IPRM)'s bid for enforced accreditation (2 years down the road and we don't hear about it anymore), and the PRCAM's resistance in offering an alternative in voluntary accreditation. Also, somewhere along the line, someone made a comment about "even karaoke singers can be PR consultants..."
  2. Increased activities by PRCAM such as the Speakeasy series and the Straight Talk series. I think having talks and gatherings where practitioners in the industry meet is really an important activity. The strategy of focusing on younger practitioners was genius - and I personally think these activities have added vibrancy to the community.
And just today, in my inbox, comes point No. 3. - The Malaysia PR Awards.
Having a credible local awards programme is incredibly important in underscoring the credibility of a creative industry. The advertising industry has the Kancil and the Sledgehammer awards. Below the Line agencies have the DMAM awards. Media buyers have the Malaysia Media Awards. Now, the PR Industry has the Malaysia PR Awards.

Yes, we had the IPRM Crystal Awards earlier, but this newer award has to take the cake in terms of credibility. Endorsement (?? Need to clarify if it's just endorsement ??) from Media magazine which runs the annual Asia PR Awards lends the credibility of not just the Malaysian industry, but the Asia Pacific industry. It's like the region applauding the coming of age for the PR industry in Malaysia.

Kudos must go to the PRCAM leadership team for putting this together, but perhaps working out the mechanics of the entire awards programme was the easy part. The next big question is: "Who will the actual winners of this programme be?"

And: "What is the quality of the awarded campaigns?"

And perhaps even more importantly: "Who are the judges?"

A balance needs to be struck (and I'm not even sure what that balance is) in order for this next step in Malaysia's PR industry's growth to succeed. We need to find credible industry judges and award the most deserving campaigns. Because, there is no second chance. A poor example of a winner in the first year will surely extinguish the credibility of this awards and drive us a step back.

So here's crossing my fingers and waiting in anticipation of some really outstanding examples of the really great PR work being done in Malaysia. Let's move forward summore.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

How to get rich in Singapore...

... setup a cab company. Seriously!

So I'm Singapore for a couple of days for a couple of meetings and a Nokia event (which is happening tomorrow) and this time round, I got booked into Rendezvous Hotel which is quite a ways from the Text 100 Singapore office.

That meant transport. And in Singapore terms, it also meant "Taxi."

Yesterday night, when I arrived and had checked in, it was off to dinner. My ex-colleague Felicia made a kind offer to take me to dinner, only that I had to meet her at the taxi stand near China Square. We were supposed to meet at 9:30, so at about 9:20 I popped downstairs to wait for a taxi.

The sign by the taxi line suggested that a taxi should arrive in 5 minutes. 10 minutes, no taxi passed by. One angry man who'd been waiting there for longer than I stomped off, presumably to now take an evening jog to wherever his location may be.

It was now 9:30 p.m. so I decided to take walk to the main road and try to catch a cab. Maybe better fortunes there. I strolled down the road just outside the hotel, carefully avoiding a couple of scantily clad ladies by the side of the road just chillin' in front of Hotel 81 (where you can pay by the hour for rooms - what an innovative system!) but failed to flag a taxi down. There must have been at least 20 taxis passing by and every single one was busy or on call.

Okay, the clock was ticking fast. It was now 9:44. I caved. I sent a quick SMS to Felicia apologising for making the poor girl wait at the taxi stand for such a long time and got the hotel to call me a cab. Surcharge was SGD4 for just booking the cab alone. The whole trip cost about SGD 10 - normal for your average Singaporean native, but for poor Malaysian like me...a bit mahal lah.

Tonight, the same thing happened again. Went to this Tanjong Pagar road to have dinner with Nicole and catch up, checked out her neato office at GE Tower and then ran off to try to reach a bike shop on time. Too bad the bike shop closed early, so I waited at the Tanjong Pagar taxi stand to patiently try and catch a cab.

Lining up in front of me was this lady who was just furious that some booked cabbie couldn't find the Taxi stand. Forgive me for eavesdropping, but after listening to her painfully explain where the taxi stand was, even I knew how to get there!

So basically, there were four of us looking to get a cab back. Myself. An auntie with groceries. And a couple just after work. I was the first in line and we waited a grand total of 15 minutes to have like more than 20 cabbies pass us by before one finally stopped.

With much vigour and excitement, I skipped to the cab driver to get him to send me back to Rendezvous, but he flatly refused.

Apparently, he had taken on another booking and Rendezvous was out of the way for him. Darn! You're at a taxi stand and you can still take bookings? What happened to picking customers up from taxi stands?

I caved immediately after and it was another SGD 10 back to the hotel.

Moral of the story? There seems to be a shortage of cabbies in Singapore and an overwhelming demand for cabbies. Maybe there's room for one more cab company?

Saturday, August 25, 2007

The truth behind Song Festival

Tomorrow (actually later today), four groups from my church will compete against one another in a battle of song and music.

But only to those who know little better.

You see, the truth is, though all four groups may seem to sing to win or to outdo one another, we're really all singing for one purpose - that those who hear may come to know Christ and his saving grace.

Tomorrow (actually later today), from mine own mouth will come the words "No condemnation..." and it's not the tune that makes it beautiful. It's the profound understanding that though we once stood condemned because of our sin, we are now condemned no more because of Christ's blood.

If there is one truth, it is the surety that you will die. And die because of the surety that you have committed sin - whether lies, or theft, or lust, or laziness, or gluttony, or anger or jealousy. But in this one truth is also the truth that Jesus Christ lives, and he lives so you too can live.

It's quite funny how the free gifts are the gifts that we value the least. Yes, it's free for us, but God paid ever so dearly. So this is why we sing, because together, we describe the love God has had for us, and challenge our own reply.

"What shall be your answer?"

Friday, August 24, 2007

Bloggers are monkeys

So here's something I wanted to post about since I heard over Buzz Out Loud last week, but never really gotten down to doing it. Or maybe because, like Tom Merritt says, I didn't want to be baited into fueling some "protest" driven publicity for this Brazillian newspaper.

But since, like in the world of Public Relations, publicity dies down so fast, it's been nearly a week and I'd like to draw our attention to this particular ad campaign:

Yeap. The above seems to be real conclusive evidence that bloggers are monkeys....who just copy content and paste links to stories done by other "real" journalists. Which is precisely what I'm doing now, right?


It's true people. We're monkeys. You, me and Derrick.

We don't have any original content to contribute to the web. All we have is re-processed and re-cycled posts.

So thank you nameless Brazillian Newspaper. Thank you for enlightening us and revealing to us the truth of what we really are. Thank you for finally proving to the world that bloggers are monkeys.

Tuesday, August 21, 2007


It was getting late. Work was tiring me out. Felicia pinged me on MSN. And, before I knew it, Fel started going on and on about how great FaceBook is, and after listening (or reading) to enough of her yammering, I relented and setup my own FaceBook account (world holds its breath - yay!).

So here's what it looks like:

Cute huh?

Anyway, for the uninitiated, FaceBook is undoubtedly one of the hottest ways to get connected. If you're Malaysian, chances are you're already on Friendster (Malaysians are the No.2 race on Friendster, in case you didn't know). Well, FaceBook is a lot like Friendster, but so much more... INSTANT! You can ping friends, draw up a calendar of where you'll be and when, start chain letters and basically anything there is an application for.

Your dashboard is basically a collection of Widgets you allow to run on your front page. This can be a Twitter-like interface, a calendar-tracker or a Flickr badge - a bit like your blog but with a lot more interactivity.

I also like the was friends and organisations are organised. Thanks to a nice little plug-in that allows FaceBook to search through my Gmail contacts, FaceBook instantly identified my friends who were already on FaceBook and suggested groups that I should join. Entered my Text 100 work e-mail and bingo! I was on the Text 100 FaceBook community.

Okay, I think I've said enough. Go try it out, now. And, when you do, ADD ME!

Tuesday, August 14, 2007


In the interest of full disclosure, let me first say my day job is to do public relations work on behalf of Nokia, through Text 100 their public relations agency. The following is my wholly, totally biased opinion.

Word's leaking around the net with regards to Nokia's just beta-ed Social Networking experiment - MOSH. Funny name I know, but I really love the concept. What MOSH promises is to bring social networking into your mobile device - i.e. your mobile phone or multimedia computer (if you own an Nseries device). Think of it like Friendster, or MySpace, or Facebook. You have your obligatory photo, video, music sharing.

But what I find most interesting about MOSH is the ability to share games and applications through the site. In fact, I just downloaded a working version of Nokia Wireless Presenter (which is free off the Nokia website if you dig deep enough anyway).

Why this is interesting for me is because this allows us to share more forms of content then ever. A recommended game, or a useful application. And when you click on those small little icons for the apps, you get to discuss those apps, let others know if it worked or didn't work for you and discuss them.

This opens the possibility of very targeted conversations going on in the MOSH space where people aren't just discussing a collection of photos, but applications, games and documents. It also opens up interesting questions on intellectual property, but I'm sure Nokia has found a way to safeguard that as with all other sharing sites.

Still, the biggest thing for me is the ability to bring it mobile, open an app that sits on my multimedia computer and get a tailor-made interface that works great for how I want to connect.

Oh, PS. I can invite people to join, apparently. Let me know if you want an invite to the Beta. Or if you already joined, add me: davidlian, to your network.

Wednesday, August 8, 2007

Media list for sale!

No, not mine. But it's amazing the kind stuff you can buy on eBay nowadays.

Checkout this posting for a Advertising Newspaper Media List.

A media list is usually regarded as a PR / Ad / Media Buying agency's rice bowl (or pasta bowl, depending on where you're from) and it takes a lot for any agency to share you their full media list.

Thus it's ironic that someone has gone ahead and posted this onto eBay. Of course, it's entirely legal if the list was compiled on their own free time. But if the seller pinched it off his own agency, that's illegal.

Here's the pitch from the seller:

Use this list to contact newspapers for all your advertising needs and media information. All 955 newspaper has names, addresses, and phone numbers

List was compiled in 2006.

It is 26 pages long and in alphabetic order with newspaper name, address, phone number.

You will have access to the most popular list in the United States.
Get your list and start making contacts.

For a limited time only get shipping for $1.00.


I'd be interested to know if he actually manages to sell it.

Hey, if you're looking to start a PR / Advertising / Media Buying outfit in the US, this might be a good first investment for the low-low price of just US$9.99 (+ $1 shipping, of course).

Monday, August 6, 2007

A Picture A Day

That's the title of my revived Vox site. I've always wanted to do picture-blogging and somehow it never seemed right to intersperse my regular posts here with those sort of posts.

What's really enabled this is the direct post-to-Vox feature on my N95 + my favourite Maxis 3G so I can snap a quick pic and post it up instantly with whatever thoughts are on my mind.

Check that out here: http://davidlian.vox.com.

Friday, August 3, 2007

My blog is rated...

Because of the sudden SURGING popularity of and peer pressure to (from popular blogs such as Amilia's and Nicole's) rate your blog, I also got this blog rated and it turned out to rate as a....

Haha... sigh.

On the basis that I only used the word "death" twice and "kill" once. We need more hilarious rating schemes for blogs. This is lame.

Song Fest 5 Ad No. 2

Here it is people, second ad. Shot on Wednesday after our regular meeting with the Brothers, shot using the Nokia N95 I had on hand, and edited by myself (still quite bad at this).

In case you didn't know, Song Fest 5 is our annual song competition at Petra Gospel Centre. We have four groups competing, and for the second time in five Song Fests, I am singing! Yay! So, please do come if you can, it's on Saturday, 25 August 2007 at 3 p.m. in my church. Ask me how to get there

And here's the ad:

Let me know what you think!

Thursday, August 2, 2007

Reminder: A life worth living

Not too long ago, a dear brother in our church passed away suddenly. Yesterday, one of my uncles (God bless his family) also passed away suddenly of stroke. I got the call at about 7 p.m. and had to rush off for his wake. He was only 45.

Sitting at the wake seemed to be an all too timely reminder of how sudden life can end, and how precious every moment of living is. Sook Kuan had a good post about epitaphs. She asked the question "What would people put on your epitaph?" They'd put exactly what you spent your life doing, and what they saw you doing.

Many people have 5 year or 7 year plans. And because of these grand plans, they spend time laying the foundation for what is next to come. But they forget to just do what's really important for the present.

I'm not perfect and pretty much guilty of this as anyone else. After the wake, I rushed over to church and managed to make it in time to meet up with the brothers, and shared these thoughts. Coincidentally, it was the first sudden death that caused us to meet every week, with the one objective of having a faithful, daily walk with God.

You see, our (us brothers) goal is to have on our epitaph when we're taken back, a legacy of lives we've touched in one way or another. Our goal is to see this faithful walk with God bear fruit in others' lives. And sadly, this is a difficult goal because its easy for each of us as individuals to get lost thinking about our own material wealth and plans. But we strive on.

So here's a second reminder for me, to live a life worth living.

Lord, help me to live as You want me to. Make my life fruitful, not fruitless. Give me grace to look beyond the world, and seek that which is eternal. Most of all, help me to love and honour You in everything I do. Amen.

Wednesday, August 1, 2007

Need to laugh

It's amazing what you don't notice can actually make you laugh...quite hard.

The picture to the left is taken from a Delcol water dispenser from my previous company's office. Thanks Kel! You made my day.

I'm the most famous me... (On the web, at least)

Was feeling a bit stretched today and just needed to do "something else" for a while. So, I tried googling myself: "David Lian."

Here's the result:

Yup. That's my two blogs on the top two and my Flickr account just a little ways lower down. I had no idea I was so "Google-able". Anyway, the next most famous David Lian is this David Lian Labang character from Sarawak. Hmmm...

For those of you waiting for wedding and cambodia photos, sorry, have to wait longer coz I so don't have time to convert all of those pics into a upload friendly size to put onto flickr. Will do...soon.