Media RoomNew Straits Times | 10 May 2009
Living with the reality and pain of spiteful blogsby: AUDREY VIJAINDREN
Internet reality show ‘Malaysian Dreamgirl’ season two has been on air for the past 11 weeks. It’s a week before the grand finale, and the top model hopefuls are not spared the drama and spite that come with the dot-com world, writes AUDREY VIJAINDREN
"PINKY has flawless skin. All the other girls should be jealous. The only thing I don't like about Pinky is her eye bags. You need more sleep girl."
"Dawn? Hmm... still acceptable. Not much difference compared with the 'make-up-ed' Dawn."
"But I must say, Juanita has got the worst skin among the girls. But it can be healed if she really cares for it and goes for more facial treatments."
Those are only some of the "nasty" comments posted on the blogs of the Malaysian Dreamgirl website.
The Dreamgirl show is a reality show model search competition.
The show follows the lives of 12 young women as they step into the glamorous world of modelling, enduring the drama and trauma of living together as they compete for the grand prize.
The girls are subjected to catty comments and insults from the Internet as bloggers freely express their opinion on any subject, from the contestants' make-up to their family.
Although the girls are left without Internet access, they are allowed to share their thoughts through the show's producer who blogs for them.
After 11 weeks of insults, praises and scrutiny, three girls remain in the competition.
"There is a lot of pain and sadness, we have all cried a lot," says accountancy student Juanita Anushya Francis Jacob, 22.
"All the girls I want to be with have left. They were the ones that looked out for me."
Juanita says people compare her with last year's winner, Cindy.
"But both of us are so different. I'm not well to do. All the girls admire the clothes I wear, but it's all from my cousins.
"People think that my family is rich but my parents are just average wage earners. I drive a 10-year-old Kancil.
"I hate the things that are mentioned in the blogs. Those who comment don't even know me.
"I don't care if they comment about me, but I hate when they talk about my family. It's horrible that they would say things just to hurt someone."
For make-up artist Pinky Liew Mee Han, 20, blog comments about her boyfriend hurt the most.
"In the beginning, it was really sad. There were a lot of people commenting about my poor English and my boyfriend," says Pinky.
"Since I don't get to read much about what was posted on the blogs, I only hear about it from my friends and family during the 10-minute calls we are allowed.
"It's quite sad to hear about what they have blogged. Some people can be quite bad and say things that don't mean anything to them."
Former Miss Malaysia contestant Dawn Lee Yeen Sze, 23, believes there is no such thing as bad publicity.
"Everyone has his or her own opinion and I don't bother. I always believe that there is no such thing as good or bad publicity, any publicity is good," says the economics graduate.
"Someone once said, 'Say what you feel, say what you like because those who mind don't matter and those who matter don't mind'. I live by those words.
"People will always criticise but if you listen to everyone then you won't be happy. As long as you know what you are doing is right."
Dawn says the funniest thing about the whole experience was when some of the girls bought a roti man's handphone.
"We were wondering why the girls were always waiting for the bread vendor and some of them didn't buy anything from him.
"Then we found the girls locked in the master bedroom after the bread vendor had left. They had borrowed his phone.
"After borrowing it a few times, they convinced him to sell his phone. The rest of us felt betrayed, because we trusted each other."
Malaysian Dreamgirls producer Jerad Solomon says the introduction of the blogs this season has seen a lot of drama.
"People think it's all glitz and glamour but it's far from it. It is difficult to be talked about and not being able to defend yourself but it's a lesson about being in the spotlight.
"There is a lot of misunderstanding, the girls are very confrontational.
"But the main aim of the show is about making them feel comfortable, to be themselves.
"We haven't shown anything that's not there. We don't create unnecessary drama. But we do want the show to be action packed.
"We don't interfere too much in the way they live. We don't take sides and try to get them to solve their problems by themselves.
"But the blogs will be here to stay, especially for the girls to experience the responsibility that comes with being a celebrity."
PICK YOUR 'DREAMGIRL'
TO vote for your favourite model send DREAM (model’s code) and send it to 33001. Log on to www.malaysiandreamgirl.tv for more information.
Voting closes at 12am on Thursday. The winner will receive a Chevrolet Aveo, RM10,000, a HP Pavilion notebook and RM6,500 worth of beauty products.
She will also be featured in InTrend magazine and awarded an exclusive portfolio by Andrews Models.
Malaysian Dreamgirl is jointly presented by HP and Intel, and is supported by Chevrolet.
- 29 May 09
Dreams do come true
- 25 May 09
Looking for beauty on the Internet
- 18 May 09
- 10 May 09
Living with the reality and pain of spiteful blogs
- 8 May 09
- 30 Mar 09
Dreamgirls live it up
- 20 Mar 09
Your dream girls
- 20 Mar 09
Not your regular girls
- 20 Mar 09
Malaysian Dreamgirl Season 2
- 18 Mar 09
Are you the next Malaysian Dreamgirl?
- 27 Feb 09
Malaysian Dreamgirl is back
- 23 Feb 09
Chevrolet Aveo taruhan Malaysia Dreamgirl 2
- 12 Feb 09
- 10 Feb 09
A chance to be a Malaysian Dreamgirl
- 7 Jan 09
- 1 Dec 08
Monday With Tey Cindy
- 12 Sep 08
The 20 Under 40: Jared Solomon
- 1 Jun 08
Fillin' In The Blanks: Cindy MDG
- 07 May 08
Impian menjadi realiti
- 06 May 08
Do you have what it takes?
- 01 May 08
Tey Cindy wins Dreamgirl reality show
- 20 Apr 08
Chasing their catwalk dreams
- 10 Apr 08
The Breakfast Show
- 09 Apr 08
Beyond the runways
- 24 Mar 08
Quest for that girl who clicks
- 02 Mar 08
Entertaining show spices up event
- 25 Feb 08
Who is your Dreamgirl?
- 19 Feb 08
Cari model melalui internet
- 18 Feb 08
Pencarian Malaysian Dreamgirl kini bermula..
- 05 Feb 08
Malaysian Dreamgirl cari bakat peragawati!
- 31 Jan 08
RANCANGAN REALITI DI INTERNET PULA
- 28 Jan 08
Search for top models to be shown on Net
- 27 Jan 08
Company launches web-based talent search reality show