Connect with us


Phuket Opinion: Samsung’s new gilt trip



PHUKET: So there we were – me, my wife and our nearly 3-year-old daughter – sitting down for a family dinner together when the advertisement for Samsung’s latest technological marvel came on the television. A mother sends her son off to travel the world armed with only his wits, backpack, stunning girlfriend and of course his Samsung S4, reasonably priced at only 21,900 baht – just over the current price of an ounce of gold. Bargain.

As the son and his travel accomplice conquer the “must-do experiences while you’re young”, mum gets video and photo updates complete with sound bites from her son sent from around the globe, delivered right into the palm of her hand.

The advertisement has certainly hit the mark. The Internet Advertising Bureau in the UK noted the video had more than half a million views on YouTube in March alone.

Since then more than 2 million people have viewed it there.

The attractive and emotive video also struck a chord with my daughter, who shouted “Daddy! Camel!… Look Daddy! Monkey!” at the appropriate visual cues.

And it was the monkey that caught me off guard. The son in the Samsung video was standing in front of a building that appeared to be in Asia, with a baby monkey on his shoulder.

This image may be perfectly presentable in other parts of the world, but if the reports by the Phuket Gazette are accurate, touting such animals for tourist photo opportunities is illegal in Thailand. Just ask the Phuket wildlife preservation officer who occasionally gathers a posse to arrest slow loris and gibbon touts on Soi Bangla. Or ask the Russian couple caught on Koh Kai Nok in March (story here).

Regardless of how clever the ad may be, the commercial my daughter saw was broadcast on Thai TV and is surely a legal no-no in the Land of Smiles. The offending three seconds of monkey footage should be cut to meet the law.

In fact, Samsung should delete the monkey footage from the video entirely. The last thing anyone would want is a corporate giant inspiring millions of young travellers to break the law here in Thailand and contribute to the unethical profit-making from exploitation of such animals.

Infant wildlife used in these unlawful practices are often poached from their mothers, who are killed in the process. This is not speculation; it is a well-documented fact.

Otherwise, if this is the route we are collectively taking, I can’t wait to download my Bangla Slow Loris app so I know where and when I can catch up with the touts – and check the latest peer reviews and prices for photos.

— Damian Evans


Get more from The Thaiger

Join the conversation and have your say on Thailand news published on The Thaiger.

Thaiger Talk is our new Thaiger Community where you can join the discussion on everything happening in Thailand right now.

Please note that articles are not posted to the forum instantly and can take up to 20 min before being visible. Click for more information and the Thaiger Talk Guidelines.

Archiving articles from the Phuket Gazette circa 1998 - 2017. View the Phuket Gazette online archive and Digital Gazette PDF Prints.

Follow Thaiger by email:

Press Room6 hours ago

Best island boat tours from Phuket – must-visit islands and unforgettable experiences you should not miss out on

Thailand7 hours ago

Thailand News Today | Foreigners anger Chiang Mai locals for kissing in temple

World7 hours ago

Former Coventry footballer seriously ill in Thai hospital

Crime7 hours ago

Weapons used by jealous Thai man to murder and chop up lover found

Guides8 hours ago

Foodie Zone: Should you try Keto diet? 2022

Chiang Mai8 hours ago

River in Chiang Mai overflows, floods spread

Join the conversation on the Thaiger Talk forums today!
Thailand8 hours ago

3-year jail term for carrying crops, fruit & veg into Japan

Thailand9 hours ago

Bank repossesses the wrong house in central Thailand

Thailand9 hours ago

Innocent man jailed 7 months for 15.8 million baht theft demands justice

Weather9 hours ago

Thailand’s cold season expected to hit in late October

Thailand10 hours ago

ฺThai boxer blackmails 20 women into sending nude pics

World10 hours ago

South Korea gives North Korea a warning

Visa10 hours ago

Philippines offers attractive alternative to Thailand’s 10 year LTR visa

Phuket11 hours ago

Thousands join Chinese ceremony at Phuket Vegetarian Festival

Coronavirus (Covid-19)11 hours ago

Bang Sue’s Central Vaccination Centre officially closed

Thailand1 year ago

Morning Top Stories Thailand | Police to end protests, Human Trafficking | September 14

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Thai Airways in rehab, All go for Songkran | March 4

Tourism2 years ago

Phuket’s nightlife. Yes, bars and clubs are still open | VIDEO

Phuket2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Covid passport talks, Thai Airways heads to court | March 2

Tourism2 years ago

Phuket Thai food treats you need to try | VIDEO

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Bars, pubs and restaurants ‘sort of’ back to normal | Feb 23

Tourism2 years ago

In search of Cat & Dog Cafés in Phuket Town | VIDEO

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Gambling crackdown, Seafood market to reopen, Vlogger challenge | Jan 21

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Covid testing for visas, Business impact, Vaccine approval | January 19

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Weekend Bangkok bombs, Thailand fires, Covid update | January 18

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Stray car on runway, Indonesian quake, 300 baht tourist fee | January 15

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Governor off respirator, sex-trafficking arrest, condo prices falling | January 14

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Chinese vaccine, Thailand ‘drug hub’, Covid update | January 13

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Bangkok may ease restrictions, Phuket bar curfew, Vaccine roll out | January 12

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Covid latest, Cockfights closed down, Bryde’s Whale beached | January 11