Saturday, 28 December 2013

All this fuss about Ashley Madison

Update 18 Nov 2014: Singapore petitions against US 'Pick-up artist' Julien Blanc
A controversial ‘seduction artist’ accused of encouraging violence against women now faces a ban from entering the UK, it emerged last night

Julien Blanc runs a ‘pick up’ company for men which critics say uses sexually abusive methods to attract women and encourages his clients to treat women badly. He was expected to come to Britain next week to run a two day seminar, but campaigners have demanded he is blocked from entering.

'Pick-up artist' Julien Blanc has been criticised over his sexually abusive and racist methods
Home Secretary Theresa May – who has a long record of refusing those whose views and behaviour she considers unacceptable, is expected to intervene in the case. Last week a minister in her department, Liberal Democrat Lynne Featherstone, said she was lobbying Mrs May to refuse Mr Blanc a visa.

Video footage shows the 25-year-old Mr Blanc using racist language and apparently grabbing women by the throat. His other proposed methods include threatening to commit suicide and isolating women from their friends.
"One comment posted on his Twitter feed stated: ‘Dear girls, could you please save me the effort and roofie (spike) your own drink? #JustKidding’"
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All this fuss about Ashley Madison

It’s just what the doctor ordered for Ashley Madison founder Noel Biderman. He’s a peddler of forbidden fruit so the collective rage of a country is sweet music to his publicity machine.

MDA has said it is blocking access to the Ashley Madison website due to the “flagrant disregard of family values and public morality”. It is a rare instance of public morality being cited in a policy or regulatory decision in Singapore. Up to now, public policy in Singapore is seldom – if at all – framed to reflect moral judgment.

The point is that public morality differs from society to society, from age to age. A Gallup poll, for instance, shows that there are more Americans today who find same-sex marriage acceptable than not. Abortion, however, is still largely morally unacceptable. I suspect the reverse could be the case for Singapore.

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Life is short in Singapore for dating website Ashley Madison

The Canada-based dating website Ashley Madison - whose slogan is "Life is short, have an affair" - has been banned in Singapore a few days before it was due to be launched there.

Since prostitution is legal in Singapore, this has led to criticism that the outlawing of the site underlines the corporate nature of the state - that adulterous relations are acceptable only if they are also commercially transacted.

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Adultery website 'not welcome' in Singapore: Chan Chun Sing

Ashley Madison, a dating website targeting married spouses, is not welcome in Singapore, said Minister for Social and Family Development Chan Chun Sing

Here is Mr Chan's full Facebook post: Saw media reports on Ashley Madison, a dating website targeting married spouses, which has plans to launch in Singapore next year.

I do not welcome such a website into Singapore. I'm against any company or website that harms marriage. Promoting infidelity undermines trust and commitment between a husband and wife, which are core to marriage. Our marriage vows make it clear that marriage is a lifelong commitment between a man and a woman. This includes staying faithful to one another.

I'm heartened by the responses of many Singaporeans who also spoke up against such website. This reflects the significance we all place in commitment and fidelity in marriage

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Even after the MDA banned adultery website Ashley Madison, it appears that there are still many Singaporeans using the website.

Although traffic to dropped 75%, since the ban, it still enjoys about 25% of the traffic it previously received.

The CEO complained that the government’s ban of the website is “anti-competitive” and is a failed attempt at social engineering.

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Ashley Madison unlikely to take up ads in S'pore: Yaacob Ibrahim

Communications and Information Minister Dr Yaacob Ibrahim said this in a written parliamentary reply to a question by MP for Marine Parade GRC Seah Kian Peng.

Advertising in Singapore is largely self-regulated by the industry through the Advertising Standards Authority of Singapore (ASAS), an advisory council to the Consumers Association of Singapore (CASE)

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MDA bans extra-marital dating website Ashley Madison
The Media Development Authority of Singapore (MDA) has banned extra-marital dating website Ashley Madison, deeming its content objectionable

In a media statement, a spokesman said that while the Government adopts a pragmatic and light-touch approach to regulating Internet content, the MDA blocks "a limited number of sites as a symbolic statement of the types of content which the community is opposed to".

My Paper carried a report from The Straits Times today that the extramarital dating website was set to launch a Singapore edition this month despite widespread objections.

Earlier media reports had said that the website was planning a Singapore launch early next year.


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Ashley Madison Sued

No harm cheating on your spouse, says the Ashley Madison adultery website. Now a former employee is suing it for ….cheating, says the Canadian Press news agency

In her legal suit, Dorian Silva claims she was given three weeks to create 1,000 fake female profiles meant to tempt men into using the site. She is asking for C$20million (S$23.8 million)

Silva, a Brazilian immigrant to Canada, says in her claim: “The purpose of these profiles is to entice paying heterosexual male members to join and spend money on the website. They do not belong to any genuine members of Ashley Madison — or any real human beings at all.”

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Ashley Madison to Mugabe – PAP song and dance about public morality

“It is against the public interest to allow Ashley Madison to promote its website in flagrant disregard of our family values and public morality. We will, therefore, not allow Ashley Madison to operate in Singapore and have worked with the Internet Service Providers to block access to the site.” – Media Development Authority (MDA), 09 November 2013.

A week later, on 17 November, this piece of news appeared in the Sunday Times:
Here were what Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong and then-Minister Mentor Lee Kuan Yew said, when commenting on the government’s anti-homosexual law, section 377a

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Govt faciliates spying and tax avoidance, but bans Ashley Madison: Uniquely PAP

Looks like the owl that visited PM was a harbinger of bad news for PM.

Seriously, the “usual suspects” could reasonably argue, if they tot about it, that the “chickens are coming to roost”.and that while moralising on adultery, the PAP govt helps the ang mohs spy on our neighbours, while helping ang moh and other Asian cos avoid tax

And PritamS wants the WP to be in coalition with the PAP?

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Cheat site 'won't let members down'

Dating website Ashley Madison aims to speak to the authorities here to review the ban slapped on it last week.

In an e-mail interview with My Paper, its chief executive, Mr Noel Biderman, said that he is "committed to persevering in Singapore" and "will not let those potential members down".

"There was no formal communication with regard to the nature of our service before a decision...was undertaken," said the 42-year-old, who noted that the website did not face any ban in other countries.


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Why blocking extra-marital affair site Ashley Madison in Singapore makes sense
Ashley Madison

Singaporeans are agitated by the fact that Ashley Madison, a site for married folks to hook-up, has intentions to “launch” in Singapore — whatever that means. A controversy magnet, the Canadian company has met objections when it opened in Hong Kong as part of an Asian expansion that also saw it enter Japan and India

On one hand, the opposition in Singapore has grown vociferous, with a Facebook group attracting over 20,000 likes for a petition that calls on the government to block the website because it could undermine marriages, promote social disharmony, and ultimately “corrupt” Singapore.

On the other hand, certain individuals say that the government should not play nanny. It should trust individuals to make informed choices about their personal lives.

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Block Ashley Madison - Singapore

As many of you have heard and notified us over the last couple of hours, that MDA has acted and banned from being accessed from Singapore.

The ban will block access from within Singapore, accessible only to those whom have installed VPNs to bypass the firewall or access it from overseas. For the minority who will go the extra mile to access them, it has never been our intention nor are we qualified to judge and stop them.

Therefore, we believe this outcome has served our purpose as our aim is to protect the majority of Singapore who are vulnerable to the temptations but have the conscience to refrain from such atrocities. 

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Adultery website prompts FB protest

Canada-based Ashley Madison - which facilitates hook-ups between married individuals - has already set foot in Hong Kong - to loud protests - as well as in Japan

Ashley Madison's impending fling with Singapore has come under fire - hours after My Paper reported that the infamous extramarital dating website would be launching in Singapore next year.

A Facebook page called "Block Ashley Madison - Singapore" was set up on Wednesday morning by a 34-year-old Singaporean businessman, who wanted to be known only as Mr Tan.

By 7pm yesterday, it had garnered over 5,000 likes.

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In the business of shattering marriages

Its foray into Hong Kong, where divorce cases hit a record high of 21,125 last year, was met with controversy as religious and family-planning groups criticised the website

If your spouse starts behaving suspiciously next year, Ashley Madison could be to blame.

The dating website that facilitates extramarital affairs between married individuals plans for a launch in Singapore next year, My Paper understands.

The Canada-based website has over 21 million users worldwide. Its slogan: "Life is short. Have an affair."

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Ashley Madison: Ban 'unjustifiable'

The people behind adultery website Ashley Madison are consulting legal advice about challenging the Singapore Government's decision to block it.

Calling it "unjustifiable", a statement from the Canadian-based site said that "suppression of freedoms, especially around interpersonal connections, can never succeed".

It noted that infidelity is not a crime in Singapore and other adult-network sites that facilitate sexual encounters operate legally in Singapore.

Majority consensus or not, Ashley Madison ban justified

The possibility that Ashley Madison would challenge the Media Development Authority’s (MDA) decision to block the site was reported in “Extramarital dating website Ashley Madison ‘disappointed’ by MDA ban” (Nov 9, online).

The company suggested that the ban was unjustified because it was based on the objections of “a small percentage” of Singaporeans, contrary to Singapore’s “open-minded nature”.

This was presumably a reference to the Facebook petition to block Ashley Madison, which has garnered more than 27,200 likes

Extramarital dating website Ashley Madison ‘disappointed’ by MDA ban

My Point of View: Ashley Madison Singapore Ban

I was astonished to find out that the Singapore government has banned adultery website Ashley Madison. But should I be shocked? While Singapore has always claimed to be a modern country, she comes across as a conservative and impractical state at times. One can forgive some folks for remarking that we have a communist run government.

Yes Ashley Madison is a website that promotes adultery. But if someone truly wants to commit adultery, there are many other options for them. There is Facebook and countless dating websites they can use. This website shows you  various steps you can take so you won't get caught on Facebook! Well there are even dating apps for smart phones that show "willing participants" that are within your vicinity! All one really needs to do is start a conversation with a simple "hello". I should know because I installed one such app on my friend's phone. And yes, he ended up banging a few chicks. Lucky him!

You can take my soon to be ex wife as a prime example. Her affair with this guy started on a a location-based social networking website for mobile devices app called Foursquare. This carried on to a messaging app called Whatsapp which soon progressed with her being a whore at a 'screw me for an hour' budget hotel.

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On State Nannying

You know about the whole Ashley Madison thing, right? You probably do if you’ve been in Singapore the past couple of weeks. Short summary: Website that enables married people to find other people to cheat with says they want to set up shop in Singapore, conservatives get outraged, set up Facebook group petitioning against it (as you do), and finally the Government decides to block the website, calling it “objectionable”. Cue much rejoicing from said conservatives.

It really would be amusing if it weren’t so sad.

Now let me state that I find Ashley Madison’s business model to be terrible in terms of morals. This is where I bring to mind the famous quote on freedom of speech:

Singapore Bans Adultery Web Site Ashley Madison

If you want to cheat on your spouse in Singapore, you're not going to get any help from popular adultery web site Ashley Madison. Singapore's Media Development Authority has blocked access to Ashley Madison because it is in "flagrant disregard of our family values and public morality." Some citizens, however, disagreed with the ban. 

Singapore's government has blocked access to the popular adultery Web site Ashley Madison amid a public outcry ahead of the company's planned launch of a portal for the city-state. The Media Development Authority, which regulates the Internet, said in a statement late Friday that it has blocked access to the Canada-based Web site because it is in "flagrant disregard of our family values and public morality."

"We will therefore not allow Ashley Madison to operate in Singapore and have worked with Internet service providers to block access to the site," the statement said

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Singapore Ignites Passions With Ban of Infidelity Website

A clash between extramarital dating website Ashley Madison and Singapore’s Internet regulator has ignited plenty of passion in the city-state and invigorated anew the debate over freedom of expression.

Ashley Madison – which operates a dating website with the tagline “Life is short. Have an affair” – had planned a November launch in Singapore that was de-railed last week after the country’s Media Development Authority, or MDA, blocked the website for being “against the public interest.”

The MDA acknowledged in a statement that it couldn’t ever block all “undesirable content,” on the Internet but would target Ashley Madison because of its “flagrant disregard of our family values.”

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Extramarital dating website Asley Madison 'disappointed'by MDA ban
Extramarital dating website Ashley Madison ‘disappointed’ by MDA ban
Company says it ‘does not promote extra-marital affairs’; ban based on moral objections of ‘small percentage’ of population runs counter to ‘open-minded’ nature of Singapore

Extramarital dating website today (Nov 9) said it is disappointed by the decision of the Media Development Authority (MDA) to block the website here.

In a statement by Noel Biderman, CEO and Founder,, the company said that it “does not aggressively promote extra-marital affairs,” and is merely a platoform that “cannibalises” an already existing behaviour pattern.

The company also said that the MDA’s decision to ban the site based on the moral objections of a “small percentage of Singapore’s population, runs counter to the accepting and open-minded nature of Singapore and its diverse citizens.”

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Don't ban cheat site, bring it on, say some

Experts noted that the ban may go against a "mature" society where citizens are trusted to make their own decisions

While the Government's move to block extramarital dating website Ashley Madison has been cheered by many, it may have opened up a Pandora's box.

Ever since My Paper first reported on Oct 23 that Ashley Madison was planning a presence in Singapore, there has been a backlash against the Canada-based website. But some now see the ban as pointless and say it gives the website even more publicity.

The Media Development Authority said that it has worked with Internet service providers to block access to the site, which was reportedly launching here this month.

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Cheats flock to Ashley Madison clone

More than 400 people from Singapore have signed up for another adultery website that launched here recently

Ashley Madison banned? No problem.

More than 400 people from Singapore have signed up for another adultery website that launched here on Wednesday. has a Singapore option in its dropdown bar, and options even for different estates like Toa Payoh and Bishan.


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Adulterous affairs website 'to launch soon in S'pore'

The Canada-based website, which promotes adulterous affairs on the basis that "life is short", has set up a local portal for people to register with it

Extra-marital dating website Ashley Madison is set to launch a Singapore edition this month despite widespread objections.

The Canada-based website, which promotes adulterous affairs on the basis that "life is short", has set up a local portal for people to register with it.

The Singapore website states that Ashley Madison is "coming in November", and The Straits Times understands that the earliest launch date is in the week of Nov 17.

related: Just who is Ashley Madison?

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